The Ordinary Skincare Haul

If you’re anything like us and you spend a lot of your time devouring beauty content from bloggers, YouTubers and magazines then you’ve probably already heard of The Ordinary Skincare; DECIEM‘s latest functional beauty range. DECIEM also make the Hylamide Low Molecular HA Booster, my favourite hydrating serum, as well as the NIOD range, known for their sophisticated, next-generation face serums and formulations. The Ordinary has been getting a lot of attention recently because of its heritage (the DECIEM team are highly respected for the effectiveness of their products) and the price point – everything in the range costs under £15, in fact most of the products hover around the £5 mark. Camilla and I were both very keen to give the range a try so we bought some goodies from ASOS – here’s the haul:

The Ordinary Skincare Haul | All Dolled Up

Brand overview

The Ordinary positions itself as being all about integrity, essentially turning the industry standard of selling “breakthrough” and “revolutionary” technology at high prices on its head: “Commonplace technologies are referred to as groundbreaking and insensible pricing strategies confuse the audience, disguising commodity technologies as advanced.” It’s a highly refreshing approach and one that I think will earn them a large and loyal following with women who are sick of being marketed to by ruthless mega-brands who clearly have no intention of offering consumers any real value. As with all of DECIEM’s brands, The Ordinary Skincare is cruelty-free and does not contain parabens, sulphates, mineral oil, methylchloroisothiazolinone, methylisothiazolinone, animal oils, benzalkonium chloride, coal tar dyes, formaldehyde, mercury and oxybenzone.

The Ordinary Skincare Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 | All Dolled Up

Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5

They had me at “Hyaluronic Acid”! I could quite literally bath in the stuff. Unlike Hylamide, which is a low molecule HA serum (so it penetrates deep into the skin), The Ordinary’s formula combines low-, medium- and high-molecular weight HA to treat the skin on multiple levels. The addition of Vitamin B5 helps to enhance surface hydration (like hyaluronic acid, it’s also a natural humectant) and plump up the surface layer of the skin. Like most other hydrating serums, this is best layered under a moisturiser and can be used day or night, as well as in conjunction with other serums.

Price: £6

The Ordinary Skincare Lactic Acid 5% + HA 2% | All Dolled Up

Lactic Acid 5% + HA 2%

The Ordinary Skincare range contains a bunch of different AHA and BHA exfoliators in various strengths but I’ve always wanted to try Lactic Acid because of its hydrating properties (are you sensing a theme here?). This 5% formulation is very mild (there is a strong 10% version available too) and is supported with a “purified Tasmanian pepperberry” (whatever will they think of next!) which is designed to sooth any related inflammation and sensitivity. I am busy having a series of professional peels so it might not have much of an exfoliating effect on my skin but I think it’ll be a good way to maintain my skin smoothness between treatments.

Price: £5.50

The Ordinary Skincare Buffet | All Dolled Up


This product is a multi-tasking peptide serum designed to tackle various signs of ageing at once. Peptides combine to create proteins (like collagen), which are the “building blocks of the skin” i.e. they contribute to firmness, suppleness and general skin health. This particular blend contains peptides that will boost collagen production and reduce the look of static and dynamic wrinkles, plus good old hyaluronic acid because… hyaluronic acid.

Price: £13

The Ordinary Skincare Advanced Retinoid 2% | All Dolled Up

Advanced Retinoid 2%

I love a good retinol and have been using the Exuviance Super Retinol Concentrate for a while, which is a 1% concentration that I haven’t had any adverse effects from. I initially thought that The Ordinary Advanced Retinoid 2% was just a stronger concentration, but it turns out that they can’t actually be compared because it uses a different form of the ingredient*. This product contains two forms of “retinoid actives”; one to tackle sagging and lack of firmness and the other, “a sustained-delivery form of pure retinol in a protective capsule system.” Both forms of retinoid used avoid irritation while delivering better visible results against signs of ageing.

*The Ordinary’s Retinol 1% product is comparable to my Exuviance one as they use the same form of pure retinol in the formulation. Advanced Retinoid 2% achieves better visible anti-ageing results than Retinol 1% with less irritation but Retinol 1% is suitable if you are looking specifically for a pure Retinol formula. If you want to know more about retinol/retinoids, read this.

Price: £8

The Ordinary Skincare Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% | All Dolled Up

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%

Pigmentation is one of my bigger skincare concerns these days (along with wrinkles, skin tone, elasticity and dehydration – yay!) and niacinamide is known as a wonder ingredient for treating sun damage. It also happens to be able to visibly improve the appearance of enlarged pores, uneven skin tone, fine lines, dullness, and a weakened skin surface. This formulation is specifically designed to “reduce the appearance of skin blemishes and congestion” while the zinc in the ingredients list helps to manage oil production. Sounds like a win-win for my T-zone!

Price: £5

You can buy The Ordinary Skincare from the following websites that ship to SA:
Look Fantastic

UPDATE: Apparently you can also order directly from the brand’s website or locally from Samika.

Also check out the brand’s website to see the full range, FAQs and a regime guide.

31 comments on The Ordinary Skincare Haul

  • Minnie

    Samika also sells The Ordinary products in SA.
    Nice site and the service is excellent!

    • Jules (author)

      Awesome, thanks – I’ve updated the post with that info 🙂

  • Tarryn B

    I ordered some Ordinary stuff from their official website (rather than ASOS, etc) and all good! I’ve been using the Niacinamide since January and I truly believe it is working wonders for my skin. I think I have maybe a month left and will definitely be repurchasing!

    • Jules (author)

      Awesome, thanks – I’ve updated the post with that info 🙂

      • Sara McDougall

        Just a warning- I ordered some items directly from their website at the end of Feb, and they only just arrived mid April. So if you are looking to try the products, don’t wait until your current products are low to order, as you will be without for a while!

        • Rebecca Wakabayashi

          what about customs? did they charge you extra for that?

          • Jules (author)

            We had the products delivered to a UK address and a family member brought them home for us, so luckily we didn’t have to worry about customs.

  • Jessica

    Can’t wait to hear how they work out!!

  • Kim

    I have a friend hauling the Azelaic Acid, Vit C Suspension and Niacinamide back from the States for me. Did you pay any customs ordering these through Asos?

    • Camilla

      We had the products delivered to a UK address and a family member brought them home for us, so luckily we didn’t have to worry about customs.

  • Ayesha

    Soo exciting. Affordable active skincare products! I’ve heard that their Vitamin C and Retinol products are not in airtight and sunproof bottles. Unfortunate. Could you possibly share your chemical peels experience?

    • Ruweida

      Hi Ayesha. The Vitamin C products are not in airtight containers but in a formulation that keeps the Vitamin C fairly stable. The newer formulations are quite high – 23 % Vitamin C – and don’t feel gritty and grainy like their previous ones.
      Their peels are fairly strong but very effective. Be a bit careful if you’re not used to peels or if you are using Retinols/Retin A.

  • aneke

    Please do a follow up review after using these products for a while?

  • Ruweida

    Ordered Buffet, HA /B5 and Rosehip Oil directly from Deciem website. Kept order under R500 – paid R53 in VAT. Arrived on 3 weeks.
    Placed order at Bay One – SA website – they include customs at checkout. Prices around R20-50 cheaper than Deciem website.

    • Wafieka

      Hi Ruweida

      How long does Bay One take to deliver?

      • Ayesha

        One week

      • Ruweida

        Not long unless products need to be ordered by them. I ordered again a few weeks ago and received it within 5 days.

  • Sam

    Hi there,
    Thanks for the amazing post and to Minnie for mentioning our store. We are the official Stockist of Deciem’s range and do get our new shipments every three weeks. So you will def be able to grab your favourite Ordinary product in quick time.
    You can find us at:

  • Lauren

    Thank you for the post lovely ladies. Have you continued using the products? If so what were they like? Particularly insterested in how you found the Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% for pigmentation. Thank you x

  • Liz

    Hi ladies, love your blog. I ordered the ordinary skincare products from Zestbeauty on the 29th April. Zestbeauty says the order has been completed but I’m still waiting. Is there a problem when ordering liquid products from overseas and coming in via customs. I check my mailbox daily with great anticipation of these products arriving.

    • Jules (author)

      I’m not aware of any issues with shipping liquids, only aerosols.

  • Kate

    hi guys, I just ordered the niacinamide and zinc and started using it yesterday.i noticed that my skin looks VERY GLOWY- and its usually dry. Can you do an updated post on your experience with these products after using for awhile.
    I used the 30% AHA peel last night for only 4 minutes and my skin feels incredible!

  • Annebelle Kotze

    Where can you buy ordinary serum in south africa?

      • Ruweida

        Please give BayOne a try. They have an excellent range of all Deciem products including NIOD and Hyalamide. Prices very reasonable and customer service is superb.

    • Ayesha

      Bayone is another site you can try. Very affordable

      • Rumaanah

        Are the products legit? The prices seem a little too good to be true…particularly in comparison to other SA retailers.

        • Jules (author)

          That’s kind of the point – it’s a very affordable brand because they’re trying to make these ingredients more accessible to the “average” consumer

  • Attricifamose

    Thanks for finally talking about >The Ordinary
    Skincare Haul – All Dolled Up <Loved it!

  • Taherah

    Hi, thanks for this article, quite helpful. Wanted to know when purchasing from ASOS, whats the customs like? Samika as well as a few other SA stores seem to always be out of stock of the AHA + BHA as well as the Niacinimide + Zinc. Getting a bit frustrated.

    • Jules (author)

      We don’t ship orders to SA – we personally feel it’s too high risk considering how inconsistent the application of customs charges tends to be. Having said that, if it’s a very small/inexpensive order then it shouldn’t attract customs fees although of course we can’t guarantee that – that’s up to the post office!

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