How many times have you relied on the Internet for more information about the products you are slathering on your skin? Most of us turn to search engines (hopefully you’re familiar with ours) for more details about the ingredients in our lotions and potions. After all, us consumers are savvier than ever when it comes to personal care. But have you ever wondered what everyone else is searching for online? A recent Google Beauty Trends Report identified and compared skin care trends from the past few years. By compiling top queries from September 2014 to September 2016, the company’s trendspotters were able to render a strong representation of the population related to the beauty category and gain insight into their intentions. What they found was interesting, though not surprising. Learn what skin care ingredients and products are being searched for most below (in no particular order), plus how they benefit your skin.
Clay was the top ingredient search for detoxification and healing. It has been shown to draw toxins (such as chemicals and heavy metals) from the skin and degunk pores of the dirt, bacteria and excess oil that lead to blackheads and blemishes. Clay works by first pulling toxins toward it like a magnet, then binding them through electrical charges and sweeping them away once rinsed.
Find it in: Dr. Dennis Gross Clarifying Colloidal Sulfur Mask ($42 in the shop)
While its benefits are well known, aloe vera still topped the list. Aloe vera is a succulent plant that stores water and roughly 200 nutrients needed for optimal skin health in its leaves. Be it a skin irritation or sun damage, it makes sense that aloe vera was searched in relation to healing and scarring, but it has also been shown to fight signs of aging, like fine lines and sun spots.
Find it in: Sciote Super Moist Hyaluronic Serum ($75 in the shop)
Similar to clay, activated charcoal draws out dirt, oil and other pollutants from clogged pores. It has been shown to adsorb over 100 times its weight in harmful substances, making it a popular ingredient in detoxifying facial masks, cleansers and beauty elixirs. However, many derms say more solid data is needed to determine its efficacy on the skin.
Gold-infused products are pretty, sure, but are these gilded creams and serums worth it? Turns out, gold has been used to treat the skin of the elite since the early times, thanks to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Research suggests that gold may be beneficial for wound healing, reducing redness and treating inflammation, which leads to accelerated signs of aging.
Cocoa butter comes from the bean that grows on the cacao tree. When roasted and pressed, a vegetable fat is released from the beans and that is what we know as the butter. Cocoa butter is high in fatty acids, and you will find it products used to treat dry skin, scars, stretch marks and skin irritations.
Find it in: Dawn Lorraine Pomegranate Lift Crème ($59 in the shop)
Tea tree oil
The oil, which is obtained through steam distillation of leaves from native Australian coastal tree Melaleuca alternifolia (M. alternifolia), is known for its antimicrobial, antifungal and antibacterial properties. It is used in a wide variety of medical applications and in topical skin care for the treatment of skin infections and acne. It is often better tolerated than other acne treatments, such as benzoyl peroxide.
Find it in: Dawn Lorraine Lemongrass Enzyme Crème ($54 in the shop)
Do a quick search and you’ll find countless articles suggesting you trade in your favorite cleanser for micellar water. It’s basically a no-rinse, soap-free, non-irritating cleanser that contains microscopic micelle molecules which lift off makeup, oil and other impurities from the skin without stripping its natural moisture or disrupting its barrier. Personally, I’m a fan, but I use it in combination with traditional face wash. My favorite is Bioderma Sensibio H2O.
This is a vague search, as there are many essential oils that benefit the skin. Formulators love them for their hardworking healing powers, but these weightless wonders have lovely aromatherapy properties as well. Not sure where to start? Check these out.
It’s packed with good-for-your-skin antioxidants, vitamin E and essential fatty acids. Argan oil is unique in the fact that it provides intense hydration while also helping to control the production of oil, making it ideal for all skin types.
Find it in: Sweetsation Orchidee Vitae Age Defying Facial Oil ($34 in the shop)
Turmeric has been getting a lot of buzz in the beauty world lately, but its benefits have been under our noses all along. In fact, the spice is ritually applied to the bride from head-to-toe before Indian weddings to increase radiance. It is an antioxidant, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory and can be used to treat everything from dark spots and wrinkles to rosacea.
Find it in: LIFTLAB Purify + Clarify: Daily Cleanser & Detox Mask ($65 in the shop)
I must admit this one caught me off guard. Egg in skin care? Ick. Turns out, egg whites are used in over-the-counter masks and at upscale spas for frothy facials. Egg whites contain two vital skin care ingredients: collagen and protein. When applied topically, they are thought (key word) to be effective at tightening and softening the skin. However, more studies are needed to know if the protein and collagen can actually penetrate deep into the skin where they are needed to work.
Rose hip oil
Derived from the rosa moschata, rose hip oil is chock-full of essential fatty acids, vitamin E, vitamin C and B-carotene, a form of vitamin A. The oil also has small molecules and therefore can penetrate deeper into the layers of skin. Applied topically, it has been shown to increase skin’s moisture levels, stimulate collagen production, decrease fine lines and wrinkles and improve skin tone. Plus, its antioxidant properties help combat UV damage.
Find it in: Sevani Advanced Omega Night Repair Serum ($75 in the shop)
This is the trend that’s taking over YouTube tutorials. Bubble clay is similar to basic clay, but it contains carbonated bubbles that provide gentle massaging properties said to help open up the pores and dissolve gunk. The clay, as you now know, then draws out dirt and impurities. Milky Piggy Carbonated Bubble Clay Mask is the name of the popular Korean treatment, which is not for purists.
The products that were searched most alongside these top trending ingredients include masks, soaps, lotion, oils and scrubs. “Think of these as the products for which ingredients seem to matter most to consumers,” the report states. “In the US, masks are the top product with ingredient-related searches.” It is likely that searchers are looking for immediate gratification, as the top concerns associated with these ingredients were healing, scars and detox.