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Put your Best Face Forward

Sarah Buzaglo

Don’t fall for the dazzling promises or impressive-sounding ingredients touted on expensive skin care products. Here’s the lowdown on what you really need to feel comfortable in your own skin.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Beauty marks have always been the bane of my existence. As a child, I’d play connect-the-dots with the various spots on my face; as a teen, I gazed anxiously in the mirror each morning searching for the latest one. This explains why a few weeks ago, when I passed the skin care aisle in the local pharmacy and saw the shiny blue-and-orange bottle, I reached for it. “Removes blemishes from the skin,” it boasted in curlicue white script, along with an impressive array of difficult-to-pronounce ingredients. For an affordable $6.95, all my spots would vanish in the space of two weeks, the bottle promised. I headed home with my purchase. Two weeks later, despite vigorous scrubbing twice daily, the small brown dots remained in the same exact position on my face. I felt duped. Something about that bottle had compelled me — a rational person who tends to overthink purchases — to buy a product that could never deliver on its promise. What made me abandon logic and buy the cream? What is it that convinces women to purchase the skin care products that they do?

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