The Ordinary Review: Why This Affordable Skincare Brand Needs to Be Top of Your List

Towards the end of 2016 I’d been wanting to start the process of stripping back my skincare routine and have a more relaxed approach to my beauty regimen and I feel like the guys at Deciem heard me. The Ordinary launched last year and though it took me a little while to get around to picking out and trying a few things (trust me there’s quite the selection), I’m so glad I did. I’ve been trying out a few products from The Ordinary for a few months now, and it’s really changed how I approach my skin everyday. The brand has a simple, stripped back approach in terms of style, application and it’s contents, and that’s exactly the ethos I’d been looking for. The one thing I would say is knowing what you are looking for can be tricky and those with little knowledge of skincare ingredients will need to read up, which The Ordinary have actually made super easy with a regimen guide which shows application and when to apply and even gives a couple of example routines. I would highly recommend checking out their website as there is a fair amount of information there that could be helpful if the range looks a little daunting on the get go.

That aside, I wanted to show you what I’d been using and my thoughts as I think this is a brand you’ll be seeing me mention a lot more in the future! Now, it all started off with the Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 which I thought would be a pretty safe starter as my skin can often be dehydrated and I’ve used seemingly similar products in the past. I use this after cleansing/toning and before any heavier/thicker products like oils or creams. I don’t go too product heavy over top of this, mainly just applying a moisturiser quickly after to allow it to work most effectively with the hyaluronic acid. It’s pretty similar to Hydraluron – that old blogger fave – in concept, so I treat it as such. I generally use this morning and night unless I’m using something else (generally only switch my routine on the odd night – AM stays the same), and tend to keep it to serum and moisturiser. Nice and simple.

A more recent purchase from them which has quickly become a huge love of mine is the Salicylic Acid 2% Solution. It’s an exfoliating acid which is often used to fight blemishes. You may remember I’m a big fan of toners that use Salicylic Acid, and I do use these on occasion, however in my experience I’ve found that persistent, regular use can be a bit too much for my skin, so I do tend to use this at the first signs of blemishes and during my transformation in to spot-zilla, but not when my skin is completely clear. So far this has been working wonders for me and I’ve actually found my recent breakouts haven’t scarred so much. *BREAKS IN TO CELEBRATORY DANCE* One little reminder is that as with any exfoliant, you’re going to want to go in hard on the SPF after using this for at least a week – even if it’s cloudy. I wear it every day that I leave the house so it’s second nature to me, but for those that don’t it’s worth keeping that in mind. Same goes for the next product…

Then we have the Lactic Acid 10% + HA 2%, this is one that I’m currently using in very small amounts a couple of times a week (PM) alongside the Hyaluronic Acid as I’m still building up my skins tolerance levels to it. Even just using a small amount leaves my skin feeling so soft and smooth the next morning so I’m excited to continue using this long term and see how it works with my skin.

Then we have “Buffet” which is described as a “multi technology peptide serum”, and if I’m honest this is the one I’m still a little unsure of so far. I question weather my skin is still a little too young for this as it’s build to target signs of ageing, amongst other concerns. I haven’t given this one too much of a road test as my skin recently broke out and I’m waiting for it to chill before I introduce it in to the rotation on a longer term basis. But I have friends who love and swear by this and it seems to be a popular choice in the range if you want something that does a little bit of everything.

All in all, my experience with the brand so far has been really positive. The product quality and performance for the price range has really impressed me. With so many acids in the range (which require SPF for at least a week after use) the one thing I do feel is missing from the selection is a kick ass SPF (correct me if I’m wrong but I can’t see a dedicated SPF anywhere). It would be great if they could be a one stop shop for all skincare needs but I’m excited to try more and I think The Ordinary also works as a great stepping stone in to other Deciem brands. They’re also Vegan and Cruelty Free as they don’t retail in China AND they retail on ASOS, so if you have your VIP membership you can get a few bits and bobs from them delivered to you the next day (worth doing if everything you want is on ASOS, otherwise delivery from their website can take a few more days). 

TLDR: Effective, affordable, vegan and cruelty free – reasons why this brand is worth a look in a nut shell. Now we know where I stand, I’d love to know your thoughts? Are you interested? Or does it all seem a little bit too science-y for your tastes? 


*This is not a sponsored post, however some links may be affiliate links.


  1. Chloe Marie Stuart-Monteith
    30 Apr 2017 / 5:59 pm

    Thank you for your review! i'll will have a look and have a try!

  2. Linda Libra Loca
    30 Apr 2017 / 7:17 pm

    I am more than excited to try them soon, the BHA and the Buffet are high up on my list of things to try. Absolutely not too sciency, I love the laboratory feeling of adding things like this into my skincare.

    Linda, Libra, Loca: Beauty, Baby and Backpacking

  3. Liz
    30 Apr 2017 / 7:19 pm

    I have been loving this brand lately!

    xo, Liz

  4. Savannah Hopkinson
    30 Apr 2017 / 7:42 pm

    I started using a few of their products last month and have loved the results so far! Finally feeling a little more confident in my own skin enough to go without makeup a few times a week!

  5. Kristy
    30 Apr 2017 / 7:52 pm

    The Ordinary is a brand I have wanted to try for a while now, and I have finally ordered myself a few bits from their website which I am patiently waiting for. I am so glad I picked up the Hyaluronic acid, and I think I may have to pick up the Salicylic acid next time round.

    Kristy |

  6. Jessica Blu
    30 Apr 2017 / 9:20 pm

    I've just picked up some of their products but I'm yet to trial them out!

  7. Khanh Nguyen
    30 Apr 2017 / 10:54 pm

    Great affordable skincare product? Sign me up please <3

  8. Jenni
    01 May 2017 / 7:09 am

    I've been so interested in giving this brand a go and hoping that somebody would do a review on it. Thanks Suzie! xx

  9. ella ryder
    01 May 2017 / 7:23 am

    I'm obsessed with The Ordinary products! Just filmed a video with them in 🙂

    Ella xx

  10. Laila R.
    01 May 2017 / 4:15 pm

    Omg! Thank you for sharing! I will have to purchase your recommendations ^_^

    Laila from Townhouse Palette

  11. Julia
    01 May 2017 / 6:52 pm

    This post is super useful! Ever since I've heard about the brand I've wanted to get some of their products. The quality seems amazing for the price, plus it feels really professional! Now I just need to see which products to pick, and posts like yours really do help with that 🙂

    Julia x
    Last Post: Spring in Warwick, England |

  12. Beth Apps
    01 May 2017 / 8:34 pm

    I've heard such good things about this brand and for someone like me who doesn't want to spend tones on skincare it sounds perfect!

  13. Kiri Yanchenko
    01 May 2017 / 10:36 pm

    Well after reading this review (and I am so glad you added that you needed SPF BTW) – I might need to try these.
    I tried a vit c serum from Abnormal and it was really oily.
    However this is a different line – so I might give these a go!
    Set to Glow

  14. Stacey Fernande
    02 May 2017 / 4:21 am

    I tried essential oils from Basilica Botanica and I love them! I'm an avid user but once I found these oils I have not swictched brands ever since. Do yourself a favor and try them. You can find them on Amazon and they qualify for amazon prime, whoo hoo!

  15. Tatian Coelho
    02 May 2017 / 12:39 pm

    This is such a good skincare range.
    Been using it for a couple of weeks now and I love it! The fact that is effective to an affordable price is a dream come true ! x

  16. The Bookish Reader
    02 May 2017 / 12:44 pm

    Love this brand. I like their Niacinamide for spots and their retinol 2% is so cheap.

  17. FlareAForte
    02 May 2017 / 1:08 pm

    Saw Fleur talking about this brand, seems great!

  18. Promo Voucherwing
    03 May 2017 / 11:06 am

    I think this is the best care product. I love this brand.

  19. Lisa Autumn
    03 May 2017 / 2:24 pm

    I so need to try their products.. and the price OMG!

    xx Lisa |

  20. Vicki Reckless
    04 May 2017 / 5:12 pm

    Really helpful review, might check their products out! I love your blog Suzie!xo

    Vicki |

  21. Megan Wesley
    04 May 2017 / 6:39 pm

    Really want to try this brand! Thanks for the review xx

  22. Nikki
    08 Jan 2020 / 9:55 pm

    I still think that the new skin care devices are much more effective than the ordinary products.
    There are anti aging machines and even ultrasonic cleansers.
    I’ve got mine at
    Anyway, I would love if you could review it, so I will be sure it’s ok to use it.