The Skincare Addict Reading List: 14 of our favorite online skincare resources
In an era where chok chok beauty dominates social media and glass skin has become the golden standard, more and more people are joining the skincare craze. As much as we want to try out every product that catches our eye though, we all know that building a skincare routine can really burn a hole in our pockets! Though there’s not much we can do about the product prices (except maybe pray for sales), there are other ways in making sure we make informed investments!
I’m Khae, your resident PV intern and a budding skincare addict. Admittedly, I used to prioritize building the perfect makeup kit over finding the best routine for me, but as one of Den’s latest converts, I too, have been sucked into the black hole of skincare. The more research I did, the more it made sense to devote more time, effort, and moolah into finding the best products for my skin troubles. And as someone with oily, sensitive skin with a penchant for redness, I realized that acing my base would be easier to do if I had a good base to work with.
Building the best skincare routine and finding the right products really boils down to figuring out what your skin ACTUALLY needs. The best routines are usually the result of meticulous research and paying close attention to how your skin reacts to certain ingredients and techniques. It never hurts to read up on what exactly you’re putting on your face. Here at Project Vanity, we’ve had our fair share of in-depth skincare articles, like Den’s crash course on acids or Becca’s piece on centella, but even your PV writers have their favorite sources when it comes to skincare wisdom! Luckily, there’s a TON of free information available online, and I’ve compiled a short list of our favorite sources for your convenience!
For AB enthusiasts, the KLogis a great source for skincare insight! Much like PV, they publish articles and build a community with their readers. Though you’ll find that most of their content is grounded on SoKo and AB beauty, they also engage in community posts, often offering helpful tips to their readers like this one on keeping skin flawless in a polluted city.
Hosting both her personal blog and an online store, Caroline's page boasts of an excellent user interface, with skincare and beauty tabs separated into helpful submenus that you can browse based on specific product types and skin issues. The UI makes it easy to navigate her insightful skin care cheat sheets and genuine posts about her reviews and personal life.
The Lab Muffin
The Lab Muffin strikes the perfect balance between science and beauty! Michelle, the brains behind the page, does an amazing job of combining her love for skincare and chemistry by using it to review and discuss products in great detail by breaking down the ingredients and chemical composition. Her scientific approach to skincare actually stems from her PhD in Chemistry! One of her most popular posts is actually an easy DIY Vitamin C serum you can whip up at home as needed, since vitamin C products tend to have short shelf lives.
Simple Skincare Science
Though he’s never revealed his real name to readers, “f.c” has earned the trust of his readers through his blog because of his heartfelt and raw perspective on skin care due to how it’s helped him on his journey to self-positivity. His openness about his insecurities due to his past skin troubles is a refreshing lens to see skincare as something more than just a means to pamper the self but also as an act of bettering the self! F.C’s content is varied, rich and honest - ranging from medical experiences, diet management, skincare tutorials, ingredient guides, and more! One of the most interesting reads I’ve come across is actually his post on the Acne Diet, since it talks about how even healthy food can sometimes trigger breakouts because of how they affect our hormones.
A fan favorite among the Reddit skin care community, Stephen is a cosmetic chemist and skincare expert that also happens to run his own blog! Unlike the Lab Muffin, who writes her own reviews, Stephen curates them from across the web on one of his blog segments called the #BeautyRecap. His own blog posts are actually more like thought pieces and abstracts on the science behind skin care, complete with charts, case studies, and diagrams that can sometimes end with his product recommendations based on his findings. His recent piece on sunscreen is right on time for summer, and will definitely have you reaching for your own spf, if you haven’t already.
Paula’s Choice is a one-stop shop, stocking their own quality skincare and helping skincare addicts familiarize themselves with their specialized tips for specific skin issues. But for me, the best part of the site is its extensive ingredient dictionary; citing detailed definitions and quality rankings so that every reader can ensure they get the most bang for their buck when trying to address specific skin concerns.
Another site with a large database is CosDNA! It’s got a great search engine for researching ingredients and products by name. Product entries are also submitted with their ingredient list, ratings and remarks for fields like irritants, safety and functions. CosDNA is a quick way to check the contents, effects and harshness of a product before purchase!
Reddit plays host to loads of skincare threads! Though it takes some poking around, online community threads can be a great source of information. This one tends to be a bit trickier, since not all threads are credible, and communities themselves can vary a lot in terms of their content and member profile. However, they can be very interactive, and provide a good avenue for getting feedback and connecting with fellow skincare addicts! One of our favorite subreddits is Asian Beauty, which has an AMAZINGLY comprehensive masterlist of AB cleansers and their corresponding pH levels! The community is active and organized, with structured post filters and efficient moderators. It’s a great place to check out the pH levels of products (which can MAKE OR BREAK REGIMENS) before committing to purchase.
Another great subreddit, Skincare Addiction is a thread with lovely members and proactive, approachable mods. Though not as streamlined as Asian Beauty, the community is thriving with activity! From hilarious skincare memes to earnest product reviews, it’s not hard to find something you resonate with. As a member of #TeamOilySkin, their thread for Oily Skin HGs has been one of my personal faves since I started browsing SCA.
Now here’s a thread closer to home - the BeautyTalkPH subreddit was created for Filipino skincare and beauty addicts to talk about their common passion! Not only is the community more familiar, but it’s a lot easier to talk about both foreign AND local brands, especially when you take into account factors like our own currency, weather, and even product availability. Their Beauty Rehab Support Group has a lot of potential for helping out fellow beauty addicts as they try to break their spending spree and their Rants & Raves thread is great if you just want a quick gauge as to how a product has performed for other users.
Skin Care Talk
Unlike the previous three entries, Skin Care Talk is a dedicated, standalone website solely for skincare community threads and discussion. What sets SCT apart is that it includes medical categories for skincare concerns, such as rosacea, melasma, and eczema. It also pegs skincare as a holistic lifestyle change, including content like DIY recipes, exercise and food. Skin Care Talk has a simple layout, but since the threads are grouped systematically, site navigation is easy and quick.
Renee, a self-professed “skin-thusiast”, has been dabbling in skincare for nearly ten years. Armed with experience on product purchase and development, she generates beautifully crafted, practical content like seasonal faves, skincare on a budget and tutorials specialized for specific skin concerns for her Youtube followers. Her Instagram feed is the stuff of #feedgoal dreams, with her gorgeous product shots and flatlays accompanied by honest reviews - punctuated every now and then with food porn. On a side note, the editing on her videos can be a really satisfying, ASMR-inducing experience, like this one.
Before she started out as an influencer, Liah Yoo worked at one of Korea’s top cosmetics companies. Now based in the US, she is living her dream as a full-time content creator and businesswoman dedicated to self-care and skincare! Liah considers skincare as a holistic process that’s meant to give you the best version of your skin rather than the impossible task of attaining a perfect, poreless face. This includes watching your diet, getting enough sleep, and of course, using the best products for your skin’s needs. Her tutorials are always fun to watch because of her quick explanations for why specific steps are done and cute step-by-step editing. Her most requested video is actually one of the best (and simplest!) glass skin tutorials I’ve seen.
The Beauty Breakdown
As a long-time subscriber to her channel, one thing I love about Morgan is her honesty and great sense of humor when it comes to talking about her skin care tips and troubles! Her channel is actually a great starting point for skincare beginners who aren’t too familiar with the technical terms, brands, and tools just yet. Morgan has a huge variety of content, with skincare hacks from everyday essentials to quick tips on how to keep from breaking out! Her skincare shorts are especially helpful for people starting out since they break down the basics of terms and regimens like layering products and proper acid use.
These entries are by no means the master list for acing your skincare routine, since that really depends on what you decide to do with it, but hopefully these resources help you get an idea of what it is you CAN do to bring out the best version of your skin! There’s loads of other resources online for you to explore, and of course, always accompany your research with medical advice from a dermatologist! Remember that your skin care journey isn’t a race to a better face, but rather a constant cycle of finding out what works best for what it currently needs.
Have any favorite skincare resources of your own? Leave them in the comments!