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Medical-Grade Skincare vs. Drugstore Brands

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Medical-Grade Skincare vs. Drugstore Brands

The world of skincare can be pretty overwhelming for many people due to the plethora of products that promise a wide range of benefits. Often, they have to go through a time-consuming trial-and-error method to find “the one” that’ll work for their specific skincare needs. They contemplate between investing in a medical-grade skincare brand or settling for popular drugstore products, which seem to work for most people they know, except for them.

If this is a major beauty dilemma for you, we’re here to help. In this article, we put drugstore and medical-grade skincare brands in a face-off to see which ones will give you the best bang for your buck.

Let’s delve right in.

What’s the Difference Between Medical-Grade Skincare and OTC Skincare?

First and foremost, medical-grade skincare isn’t necessarily prescription medication. Although they are exclusively sold in clinics or medical aesthetician’s offices, you do not need a doctor’s prescription to buy them. The same is true for drugstore brands. However, these are mainstream products that are widely available in beauty and retail stores.

Now, here’s what sets them apart from each other.

1. Formulation

Also known as cosmeceuticals, medical-grade skincare products are formulated to treat individuals with specific skin types and medical conditions. They have potent, stable, and premium-quality active ingredients in exceptionally higher concentrations. 

On the contrary, OTC skincare or drugstore products are designed for the general population with normal skin health. They may be advertised to contain similar ingredients as those found in medical-grade skincare but usually only have trace amounts that are less optimal in quality and less stable. 

2. FDA Regulation

Drugstore skincare brands are strictly regulated by the FDA and are not allowed to make medical claims.  

In contrast, medical-grade skincare products have medicinal and cosmetic properties. Dermatologists and medical aesthetic doctors often use them to professionally address their patients’ skincare conditions, including acne, rosacea, melasma, or psoriasis. The FDA does not cover them. Ultimately, if you are dealing with acne and other serious skin issues, investing in medical-grade skincare products would be a more practical approach.

3. Absorption

Aside from the potency and quality of ingredients, medical-grade skincare also has more advanced mechanisms to ensure optimum absorption and delivery in the deepest layers of the skin. This guarantees that you’ll get your desired results as promised and in a shorter amount of time. 

On the other hand, most mainstream brands are usually packed with synthetic additives and cannot penetrate beyond the topmost layer of the skin. This means that your daily skincare regimen using drugstore brands may be in vain and only flushing your hard-earned money down the drain.

 Dark-skinned woman applying skincare on arms.

4. Proof of Efficacy

Medical-grade skincare products are scientifically proven to be effective at providing their intended effects. They are typically always backed by a series of clinical trials and peer-reviewed studies. They are highly recommended by doctors who have carefully reviewed the compelling clinical evidence about medical-grade skincare brands first before promoting them to their patients.  

5. User Experience

Medical grade skincare brands offer a more high-end user experience, for example, consistency and scent. A small amount is often enough to cover a large area. The skin doesn’t feel sticky after application. More importantly, it usually has a subtle, pleasant scent, unlike OTC brands that come with harsh chemical artificial fragrances, minimizing risks for skin irritation.  

APT Brings You The Best Medical-Grade Skincare Brands

Whether you’re shopping for sun protection, anti-aging, or acne treatment, we’ve got you covered! APT Medical Aesthetics is pleased to offer some of the most advanced and respected skincare companies today:

Not sure which one’s for you? We can help. 

Book a consultation with our team of dermatologists and cosmetic experts today. We’ll create personalized cosmetic and skincare treatments that deliver the results you’ve long been looking for. Our holistic and hassle-free clinical approach to beauty and skin health eliminates the guesswork and risks of using medical-grade skincare.
For more information about medical-grade skincare or to schedule a free consultation, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. A member of our team will be happy to assist you. Contact APT today.

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