The Skincare Hoax – How You’re Being Tricked into Buying Lotions, Potions 

Since then, its author, the American dermatologist Fayne L. Frey, has become a reference in skin care, which all the English media are raving about. While waiting for a French translation of a book which debunks many preconceived ideas and myths regarding so-called essential and especially anti-aging products, we contacted her at her offices in New York.

The dermatologist, trained in medicine after a detour through chemistry, has asked herself the question daily for 30 years, seeing women (“but sometimes men too!”) come into her office disappointed and discouraged by all these little things. bought at a high price and raising high hopes. This is also what prompted her to write her book, a 150-page bible written with frankness and deadpan humor, supported by a critical and scientific perspective.

“I don’t sell anything and I don’t work for any company,” she says. Its goal: to confront the claims of industry products with what science says. Meticulous ingredient analysis and care testing included.

This is what allows him to assert with withering certainty that eye cream is often just a “moisturizer in a tiny tube with an inflated price,” a night cream is “nonsense” (“ do you think the ingredients tell the time?”), the useless exfoliant (the skin naturally replaces itself “by itself”), and this imperative to remove makeup in the evening a myth with no scientific basis.

“Our faces are comfortable with makeup all day long […] and we’re supposed to accept this idea that if we go to bed with the lights off in a quiet house, that same makeup would suddenly transform into some sort of of threat? “, she quips in the book. The only real danger is probably the state of your pillowcase when you wake up. “But no scientific study has shown that not removing makeup in the evening will cause wrinkles, premature aging of the skin or the outbreak of pimples. »

Because no, the skin does not “breathe” (“it’s the lungs that do that”) and we don’t “nourish” it further. “Skin cells in contact with moisturizer die. You don’t feed a dead cell! […] It means nothing. »

Surprise: no, its publication did not lead to a series of lawsuits. “Because what I say is true! says Fayne L. Frey, who does not demonize anyone in the text or our interview. “The response has been very positive. I don’t say what not to use, but I advise what to use. […] I even had very positive reactions from certain chemists who formulate certain products! »

A vitamin C serum here, a hyaluronic acid concentrate there, without forgetting a hint of retinol, here or there, it is indeed enough to lose one’s Latin. And earlier and earlier. “I see younger and younger clients coming through my office,” laments the dermatologist. Social media marketing is cutthroat and young people feel inadequate! »

Inadequate, because we are all being hammered with messages (and as many needs) by a multi-billion dollar “illusion industry”, to boot. The author devotes an entire chapter to the subject.

An example ? The famous “anti-aging” products make “no sense”, when we know that “nowhere on the planet have we found a single ingredient capable of reversing aging”, insists Fayne L. Frey at end of the line. Let it be said, the miracle ingredient does not exist: “I have never seen anyone get rid of a wrinkle with retinol. […] No more than with any other good moisturizer. » Certainly, some products will “temporarily reduce the appearance of wrinkles,” as the bottles carefully state. “Just like any other good moisturizer! » At a fraction of the price.

Let’s be clear: if you love your anti-aging cream, bought at a high price and probably praised by a celebrity, because it smells good and leaves you with a pleasant feeling on your skin, then you’ll be well served. “But you should know that it will have no more or less effect than the cheap $8 cream at the pharmacy,” says the author. If there was an anti-aging product, everyone would use it. »

All this to say that if you have normal skin (people suffering from acne, eczema or rosacea should obviously consult a professional for advice), your bathroom does not need to be overwhelmed with bottles .

What products are necessary for healthy skin, then? Moisturizer, of course. Fayne L. Frey talks about it all the time (to provide the skin’s water evaporation barrier, one of its reasons for being, after all), but also about sunscreen. “To date, the only cream whose power to prevent the appearance of wrinkles and spots on the skin has been demonstrated, study after study. »

That’s all. “So love yourself for who you are,” concludes the dermatologist philosophically. Because yes, over time, your skin will have more and more imperfections […] and we will all end up aging…”