Photo: ThinkstockBy Jenny Bailly
Don't Need It: A Cleanser That Claims to Do More Than Clean
"Cleanser stays on your face for about six seconds--no anti-aging ingredient can affect your skin in six seconds," says Boston dermatologist Ranella Hirsch, MD. Almost every skin doctor we know washes her face with a basic drugstore cleanser--they're simple, cheap and do what a cleanser should: clean your skin. Save your money for skincare products that you don't immediately wash down the drain. (Hirsch's current favorite cleanser: Basis Cleaner Clean Face Wash, $6; drugstores.)
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Don't Need It: A Cream That Comes with a Tiny Spoon
Moisturizers with triple-digit price tags and fancy trappings--layers of elegant wrapping, glass jars that weigh more than a newborn, Lilliputian gold spoons--do the same job as the basic drugstore versions. "The purpose of any moisturizer is to seal in moisture, keeping your skin supple and smooth," says San Diego dermatologist Jeffrey Benabio, MD. "Whether the moisturizer costs $200 or $20, it uses the same basic ingredients to do that."
Don't Need It: A Neck Cream
The cream you use on your face at night is likely rich enough to soften and smooth the skin on your neck. There's no need to invest in a separate product. However, there is one exception: If you have oily skin and use a very lightweight moisturizer (or none at all), you should get a separate cream for your neck (which has fewer oil glands and needs more hydration than your face).
You don't need to buy a pricey cream marketed as a neck product, though, says New York City dermatologist Jessica Krant, MD, who recommends La Roche-Posay Toleriane Riche ($28, drugstores), which has a high concentration of skin-softening shea butter.
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