11 Best Products from The Ordinary

As one of the biggest “it” beauty brands right now, The Ordinary definitely doesn’t make ordinary products. Unlike other skin care product lines, The Ordinary’s offerings contain simple, science-backed formulations that speak for themselves.

Combining research with no-frills packaging, high active ingredient concentrations, and low price points, The Ordinary certainly stands out. All of the brand’s products are even free of fillers, parabens, sulfates, mineral oil, formaldehyde (a gas used in household products like plywood and glue), and mercury (a harmful ingredient linked to tremors, depression, and memory issues), plus they don’t test on animals. There’s also a 365-day return policy if you try out a product and it doesn’t work for your skin.

We took a deep dive into this unique brand to discover its best-loved products. Here’s what you need to know about the 11 best offerings from The Ordinary.

In choosing our top picks from The Ordinary, we evaluated the brand’s best-selling products with the most positive user reviews and editorial distinction and recognition from leading beauty magazines.

Pricing guide:

  • $ = under $5
  • $$ = $5–$15
  • $$$ = over $15

Best cleanser

Squalane Cleanser

  • Price: $$
  • Best for: all skin types
  • Key ingredients: squalane (a molecule that can help skin feel more hydrated, vibrant, and healthier)

This no-soap cleanser removes makeup and dirt without irritating or stripping your skin, reviewers say. While it goes on like a balm or a thick moisturizer, it becomes an oil-like serum as you rub it on your face, meaning it won’t leave your skin feeling dry after you rinse it off. Its main active ingredient is squalane, a super hydrating additive that, when applied topically, can fight skin damage and boost collagen production.

Best toner

Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution

  • Price: $$
  • Best for: all skin types, except sensitive skin
  • Key ingredients: glycolic acid, amino acids, aloe vera

This product uses alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) in the form of glycolic acid, an ingredient that breaks down bonds between the outer and next layer of the skin, providing smoother and more even skin. Glycolic acid is the smallest AHA, meaning it penetrates the skin easily and allows you to see its smoothing effects faster than other AHAs.

Using active ingredients glycolic acid and aloe vera, the toner gently exfoliates the skin to improve texture and brightness. Most reviewers love how it works to clear up acne and bumpiness, however, some mentioned that it actually made their skin break out, so it’s always good to do a patch test before applying it all over your face.

Best primer

High-Adherence Silicone Primer

  • Price: $
  • Best for: all skin types except oily skin
  • Key ingredients: adaptive silicones

This primer is beloved for its blurring effect, specifically because of its ability to mask large pores and imperfections, setting the stage for flawless makeup application. Many reviewers rave about the texture of this product but they stressed that it’s important to let it dry completely before putting makeup over it so the primer doesn’t pill or flake off. Other reviewers said it made their oily skin even oilier, so it may not be ideal for those with that skin type.

Best moisturizer

Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA

  • Price: $$
  • Best for: oily or acne-prone skin
  • Key ingredients: hyaluronic acid and amino acids

This moisturizer uses ingredients that are naturally found in your skin (like hyaluronic acid) to boost hydration and surface smoothness. While this product can be used on all skin types, it’s best for oily or acne-prone skin because it’s a lighter moisturizer — you’ll reap the moisturizing benefits without stripping your skin and the formula itself won’t make your skin appear even more oily. Some reviewers said they use a heavier night cream or boost the product with a hyaluronic acid serum in the daytime to provide extra hydration.

Best mask

Salicylic Acid 2% Masque

  • Price: $$$
  • Best for: oily or acne-prone skin
  • Key ingredients: salicylic acid, charcoal, clay, squalane

This 10-minute mask effectively works to clear up acne when used once or twice a week — a small commitment for some big benefits. Reviewers say that they noticed reduced pore size and fewer blemishes after using this mask. As a bonus, a little product goes a long way, meaning that you don’t have to use much to get the desired skin-smoothing effects.

Best chemical exfoliator

AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution

  • Price: $$
  • Best for: all skin types, except sensitive skin
  • Key ingredients: alpha hydroxy acids, salicylic acid, hyaluronic acid, vitamin B5

Summary: This exfoliant is the most popular product from The Ordinary — it had an 85,000-person waiting list in 2020 after it went viral on TikTok and Kim Kardashian mentioned it was part of her beauty routine. While at-home peels aren’t for everyone, particularly those with sensitive skin or cystic acne, this one helps clear congested pores, smooth surface texture, and brighten the skin. Reviewers say it leaves skin feeling slightly dry temporarily, but doesn’t cause peeling or irritation.

Best redness reducer

Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%

  • Price: $$$
  • Best for: all skin types
  • Key ingredients: azelaic acid

This cream brightens skin and reduces redness with azelaic acid, a type of yeast that lives on the skin and can treat rosacea and acne. While some reviewers say they don’t like the formulation’s thick texture or pilling consistency, it’s supposed to be used at night — and not under makeup — since it’s a direct acid product. (Don’t let the word “acid” scare you: over-the-counter (OTC) acids, or chemical exfoliants, simply help get rid of dead skin cells and are weaker than treatments you would receive from a facialist or dermatologist.)

Best for mature skin


  • Price: $$$
  • Best for: all skin types
  • Key ingredients: peptides, amino acids, hyaluronic acid

This serum is targeted for mature skin because it improves texture and reduces imperfections using peptides. However, according to the brand, it can take up to 4 months of use to start seeing results, so consistency is key with this product.

Reviewers noticed that their skin looked clearer and brighter as a result. It’s important to note that since this product contains peptides (amino acids that, when absorbed into the skin, can improve the skin’s moisture barrier, help clear breakouts, and more), it shouldn’t be used with direct acids or ascorbic acids, like the Azelaic Acid Suspension 10% on our list.

Best acne-fighter

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%

  • Price: $$
  • Best for: acne-prone skin
  • Key ingredients: niacinamide (vitamin B3)

Using a 10 percent concentration of niacinamide (a form of vitamin B3 that can help your skin build a stronger moisture barrier and minimize redness, blotchiness, and pore size) this blemish-fighting cream soothes trouble spots and evens skin texture. Reviewers like how easily the product absorbs into the skin and the way it helps eliminate blackheads. Note that, because niacinamide can affect the strength of vitamin C, it’s important not to use vitamin C products in the same routine.

Best face oil

100% Organic Cold-Pressed Rose Hip Seed Oil

  • Price: $$$
  • Best for: all skin types
  • Key ingredients: rosehip seed oil

This 100% cold-pressed rosehip seed oil lets your skin reap the benefits of the ingredient’s skin-smoothing nutrients, including linoleic acid (which helps strengthen the skin barrier to keep moisture in) and pro-vitamin A. While those with oily skin may be reluctant to use an oil on their skin, reviewers say that this product provides moisture and improves texture for all skin types, and doesn’t cause breakouts.

Best regimen

The No Brainer Set

  • Price: $$$
  • Best for: all skin types
  • Key ingredients: varies for each product in the set

This three-product set includes The Ordinary’s Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA, Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion, and “Buffet.” It’s the brand’s best-selling skin regimen since the included products target dark spots and aim to improve skin texture.

It supports all skin types and provides an overall glow with consistent use. Reviewers suggest using this set as a nighttime routine because of the pilling nature of the “Buffet” cream.

Now that you know more about The Ordinary brand, you can decide if these products might be a good fit for you. These products are not only affordable but their ingredients are backed by science, which can’t be said for all of the many beauty products on the market these days.

However, if you’re unsure if any of the ingredients in these products will work well for your skin, you should see a dermatologist before starting a new regimen. That way, you can better understand your skin needs from a professional perspective.

DO NOT EDIT THIS BLOCK DIRECTLY! It is a very tricky block, and is VERY easy to break. If you have never seen the instructions, before editing you MUST WATCH THIS 90-second VIDEO.

Replace the placeholder image on the left with a 200×200 pixel photo of the author.


About Dian Sastro

Check Also

Laser Hair Elimination With the Alexandrite Laser Discovered

Alexandrite Laser Body Hair Removal is just 1 way to get rid of Overall body …