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As 2020 comes to a close, we’re looking back at some of the top skincare products of the year. Aside from standout products and Shopping reader favorites, 2020 saw various notable moments for skin care, too. Expanding beyond Fenty Beauty’s makeup, Rihanna launched Fenty Skin, featuring cleansers, toners and sunscreens. And speaking of sunscreen, just because we spent a lot of time indoors this year doesn't mean we forgot about it. In fact, dermatologists recommended we wear sunscreen indoors to protect ourselves from skin-damaging light that might come through windows. We saw increased interest in elevated skincare routines — perhaps a result of people using devices like Foreo Luna face brushes as well as under eye patches and products with ingredients like azelaic acid and retinol. Below, we dive into the most purchased skin care products Shopping readers chose this year.
While you may have thought the days of teen acne were behind you, dermatologists say acne is becoming increasingly more common in adults. Differin Gel is one of the best products for those of any age with acne-prone skin as it’s an over-the-counter retinoid. For oily skin, readers also liked La Roche-Posay Effaclar Purifying Foaming Gel Cleanser, as well as Neutrogena Rapid Clear Stubborn Acne Spot Treatment Gel, which contains Benzoyl Peroxide. If you don’t have time to wait for retinol creams and serums to work their magic, pore strips provide a quick fix for removing pesky blackheads.
The combination of cold weather and heating systems pumping out hot air leaves many people with a dry scalp in the winter. LivSo Moisturizing Shampoo is one preferred solution. The product’s formula contains xylitol, which fights yeast, as well as salicylic acid, glycolic acid and willow bark extract, which exfoliate and soothe. Additionally, Neutrogena T/Gel Extra Strength Therapeutic Shampoo is made with 1 percent coal tar, an ingredient that can ease flaking and scalp irritation.
Dermatologists say a lack of sleep, dehydration, drinking too much alcohol and not eating a well-balanced diet are all lifestyle factors that can contribute to the appearance of dark circles, but genetics and aging may be to blame, too. If you’re looking to get rid of dark circles, Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair Anti-Wrinkle Retinol Under Eye Cream helps do the trick, and it’s easily accessible at drug stores. Other dermatologist favorites this year include L'Oreal Paris Anti-Aging Eye Cream and RoC Retinol Correxion Anti-Aging Eye Cream Treatment. Under eye patches can also help reduce dark circles, puffiness and lines.
Like the scalp, heels also fall victim to winter’s chill and lack of humidity. Dry, cracked heels are painful, and dermatologists say they can even get infected. Eucerin Roughness Relief Spot Treatment’s formula contains a high percentage of urea and exfoliating alpha hydroxy acid, which removes dead skin cells so the moisturizing components of the formula, like sunflower oil rich in vitamins A and E, can seep into skin. Experts also recommend CeraVe SA Cream, which contains niacinamide, a B vitamin that helps prevent moisture loss.
We named the Philips Norelco MG7750/49 Multigroom Series 7000 the best all-in-one trimmer this year since it comes with 23 attachments to cover all of your trimming needs between your head, body and face. The trimmer is cordless, has a battery life of five hours and its self-sharpening blades last for up to five years. You can also add beard and grooming products to your shaving routine, like beard oil, conditioning beard wash and body wash.
Children have extra delicate skin, so when shopping for sunscreen, dermatologists recommend looking for ones that have a mineral rather than chemical formula, as well as SPF 30 at minimum. Aveeno Kids Continuous Protection Zinc Oxide Mineral Sunscreen Lotion hits all these markers, and it has an hypoallergenic formula that won’t cause irritation or stinging. We also rounded up the best sunscreens for acne-prone skin — featuring products from brands like Neutrogena and Supergoop — and the best skin care solutions for those with oily skin.
The CDC advises you use alcohol-based hand sanitizers with at least 60 percent ethyl or 70 percent isopropyl alcohol as they’re effective in killing bacteria and viruses. Hand sanitizer has become highly sought after during the coronavirus pandemic, especially brands like Germ-X, which has 63 percent ethyl alcohol. Doctors say Germ-X Hand Sanitizer will fight off germs and Covid-19, although they prefer traditional water and soap handwashing overall.