The Ordinary just launched a fragrance-free barrier support serum! And to much of Cassandra’s surprise, the ingredients were super complex! This is interesting because most of The Ordinary’s products are normally single-ingredient actives. Cassandra wasn’t expecting them to launch a product with multiple ingredients, but it’s a complete blend! The Ordinary doesn’t have any barrier support serums. So, it’s fascinating to it being brought to market, and it’s fascinating to see how The Ordinary has revolutionized and elevated its simplistic take on skincare.
Water and propanediol
The first ingredients are water and propanediol. Of course, water is a hydrator, and propanediol is a humectant. This is great because humectants pull water deep into the skin. Hydration is like the foundation of barrier repair. Moreover, propanediol is slippery which makes the product slippery.
There is also a large amount of niacinamide in the formula. Niacinamide is a powder, and likewise, it’s very hard to formulate into skincare products. But, The Ordinary did it very well, and the formula is not chalky at all. In addition to redness, niacinamide soothes inflammation which can damage the skin barrier. Niacinamide also controls oil production, and it promotes the production of ceramides. Ceramides are one of the most important components of skin barrier repair.
This product contains two polar lipids called sphingolipids and phospholipids. Polar lipids are essential to building the cell’s membrane. The cell membrane (also known as the plasma membrane) separates the inner contents of a cell from its exterior environment. This cell membrane provides a protective barrier around the cell and regulates which materials can pass in or out (NIH, 2023).
Specifically,phospholipidsprovide a barrier for the skin while hydrating and helping it to repair. On the other hand, sphingolipids are enriched in the central nervous system (CNS), and they participate in tissue development and the protection of cells (NIH, 2023).
This serum also contains phenoxyethanol, and it adds a sensorial experience to the product. It can make your skin flush, or it can make it feel “fresh” in a similar way to menthol although there is no minty smell. Phenoxyethanol is an aromatic alcohol and preservative. If you’re sensitive, you can let it air out in your hand. Then, you can put it on your face. If you apply it directly to your face, it probably will flush your skin.
The barrier repair also contains ginger extract which Cassandra found strange because it contains gingerol which can be very irritating. The serum also contains phytic acid and acetic acid. These acids aren’t exfoliating. They function as soothing antioxidants that protect the skin from environmental damage. There’s also grape seed oil which is filled with anti-inflammatory and skin-supportive omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
EGCG(epigallocatechin gallate) is also included. EGCG can be found in green and black tea. In this formula, EGCG is being used as an antioxidant and for moisture retention. Next, we have xylitol glucoside. Xylitol glucoside is a plant sugar that grabs moisture and holds it in the skin (humectant).
Why is The Ordinary’s Barrier Repair serum pink?
There’s another plant extract called cyanocobalamin which is also known as B12. B12 can help with redness and inflammation, and it also gives the serum its pink color. So, this formula is a naturally bright pink color. It’s fragrance-free, dye-free, and it rubs on clear. Although it would probably pill a little under makeup, it doesn’t stain or feel sticky. And for $17, you’re getting a ton of ingredients, not just the pink color. A little bit definitely goes a long way.
Does The Ordinary’s Barrier Repair Serum work? Who is it for?
Cassandra tried this product for about 2 weeks. It seems to be a light moisturizer for oily skin or a nice barrier serum for combo to dry skin. If you have dry patches of irritation, you might need something different. if you simply have dry skin, you’ll want to use this, and then, put moisturize over the top.
Is it for sensitive skin?
This is probably for non-sensitive skin types, meaning it’s for people who don’t have very reactive skin. When it says “barrier support,” this means it’s for damaged skin or someone who needs support and moisturization. For instance, Cassandra feels like it help her barrier repair, especially since she’s been stressed and skin-picking hasn’t been following her skincare regimen as closely.
What can you use it with?
During her skincare regimen, Cassandra uses this with tretinoin, snail mucin, and aWishful Sleepmask.
Coverphoto cred: Deciem/ The Ordinary