The Rise of Bespoke Beauty: A Guide to Personalised Skincare

The Rise of Bespoke Beauty: A Guide to Personalised Skincare

Function of Beauty

To say that personalised beauty is a new phenomenon would be a lie. It’ always been there, but it was expensive; reserved for the elitist, and offered with a hefty price tag.

Yet to truly understand the rise of bespoke beauty, one has to look at its counter part – fashion – and how the want for a customised experience in your wardrobe made its way from what you wear, to what you put on your skin.

Brands like The Daily Edited – the customisable accessories label – bought personalisation to new heights Down Under when it launched in 2014: the idea surrounded around the ability to grab any piece of leather in store or online and switch from cursive gold lettering to bold black initials. It was obsessive, a must-have for any of your girlfriends’ birthday gifts, and proved that the consumer’s love for unique goods was a goldmine.

The movement exploded: supermodels started wearing their names across their jackets, Burberry and Hermes created bespoke blankets for your home and Prada gave you the option to create a pair of brogues from scratch – and as such the trickle down effect was in full force.

This step away from the one-size-fits-all approach was seen by the beauty industry – but rather than a focus on how the products looked, it focused on what the product offered – something led by the industry’s move towards embracing diversity: the realisation that not everyone has the same hair and skin colour and type, and that everybody needs to be catered to, was afoot.

“Beauty is inherently very personal and tied to identity; in this context, product personalisation allows individuals to celebrate their own unique beauty rather than encouraging them to conform to a set of ideals,” says Samantha Mang, SVP of Brand and Innovation at Function of Beauty. “We will continue to see new concepts, formats, and innovations within customisation, and we anticipate those new innovations will be more broadly available in mass channels too — collectively, through all of those efforts, we’re setting new standards for beauty.”

“People are more and more into the idea of customisation. Having something personalised to you, instead of choosing from a small group of pre-made options, is so much more meaningful and valuable,” adds Courtney Goebel, client education manager at eSalon. “There’s also a paradigm shift away from how beauty used to be represented, where people are interested in celebrating individuality and what makes us all unique.”

The writing’s on the wall: Personalised skin care is just getting started.

Here, everything you need to know.

So, what is personalised skincare?

Most brands who offer personalised skincare will first ask for a skin analysis. Today, methods for fine-tuning formulas range from intuitive mobile apps, fun online quizzes, and one-on-one IRL consultations, but they all have the same purpose: to understand what your skin needs.

After receiving your skin analysis, a team of experts—such as dermatologists, scientists or pharmacists will look at your skin, or your answers, so that they can create a specific batch that caters to (and hopefully improves) your complexion crisis.

How do they know what’s best for my skin?

Using your skin analysis, dermatologists will check your answers for any potential red flags, before the lab starts to whip up a special blend that uses ingredients that specifically work to help your problem areas.

Do the ingredients differ from but-produced skincare?

This really depends on the brand. Some brands will offer stronger ingredients to those over-the-counter (especially those tailored to you by the dermatologist or skincare expert).

Other brands will just select from a pool of ingredients, meaning that the products chosen for you are to both maximise efficiency in tackling your skin concerns, and also to minimise any unpleasant side effects based on how your skin is likely to react to the active ingredients,- rather than necessarily being “stronger”.

As with all skincare, it’s still important to do a patch test, or opt for using certain products every other day or twice a week, rather than daily, depending on your skin’s sensitivity.

6 personalised skincare options to try


Function of Beauty

The brand’s newest launch, For Your Skin Only (FYSO), is a completely-personalised and bespoke range featuring 6 skincare products that lean on Function of Beauty’s algorithm technology and customisation expertise to create completely bespoke formulations based on your “skin goals.” The algorithm calibrates a one-in-three-billion formula to offer custom products – all base off a skin quiz which informs your custom products.

The brand have also expanded the range to cater for your hair and body, letting you chose everything from the smell to the formula’s colour – as well as giving you a bunch of cute stickers to customise your packaging.

Skinstitut myDNA

This version of personalised skincare is a fun one. In order to supply your experts with all the info they need, Skinstitut has paired up with genetic testing experts, myDNA, where customers are asked to take a simple genetic test, so they can understand exactly how your skin is likely to age.

One received, Skinstitut will provide a customised prescription for the right preventive skincare products and professional treatments to help you press pause on premature ageing.

The test allows you to discover how your genes can influence wrinkles, skin texture, age spots and sun damage.

Qr8 MediSkin

Australian brand Qr8 MediSkin, require imagery of your skin post-skincare, along with a detailed form on your concerns and requests, in order to prescribe the correct ingredients. They are also available for one-on-one support after you’ve tried out the products, giving you the opportunity to discuss what did and didn’t work for you.

SkinCeuticals Custom D.O.S.E.

SkinCeuticals’s bespoke branch, Custom D.O.S.E. (which stands for Diagnostic Optimization Serum Experience), offers a participating dermatologist to mix up a personalised formula determined by a series of 85,000 (!) algorithms, with 48 possible serum combinations with tried-and-true ingredients like glycolic acid, retinol, and niacinamide at your provider’s disposal.

Clinique iD

Clinique’s custom service is based on a two-step process: first you pick your base (the iconic Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion, Oil-Control Gel, or Hydrating Jelly), then you pick your Active Cartridge Concentrate™ (each focuses on different skin issues like enlarged pores or dull skin),

Kiehl’s Apothecary Preparations

Kiehl’s Apothecary Preparations offers a virtual consultation where the customer can, at this stage, create their own custom serum. Created the brand’s skincare experts, the diagnostic tool helps formulate a skincare concentrate just for your unique concerns with an online quiz.

Each customer’s personalised facial concentrate is comprised of three distinctive parts: the base Skin Strengthening Concentrate plus two individually selected Targeted Complexes.

By Nikolina Ilic

Nikolina is the web-obsessed Digital Editor at Men's and Women's Health, responsible for all things social media and .com. A lover of boxing, she spends most of the time in the gym or with her husband and daughter. She was previously a Digital Editor at GQ and Vogue magazine.

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