One could argue that 2014 was the year of coconut oil. We used it for everything from cleaning our mouths out (well, I didn’t —yuck) to slathering it on our faces. But many more decidedly high-tech skin products launched in 2014. From a truly cool under-eye bag treatment to a now-popular Korean import, here are the five most newsworthy skin care moments from the past year:
Non-surgical under-eye bag fix:
Living Proof, the hair care company partially owned by Jennifer Aniston, is best known for its innovative hair products developed by MIT scientists. But it was only a matter of time before the company started dabbling in skincare, and its first launch was a doozy. CalledNeotensil, it offers a temporary fix for under-eye bags. Basically, you prep your skin and then brush on a liquid substance that dries into a film which firms up any under-eye baggage you’re carrying around. It lasts for a day, is completely undetectable, and is easily removed. You have to purchase it at a dermatologist’s office and get trained there on how to apply it the first time, but it provides miraculous, albeit temporary, results.
Everything coming up roses:
The uber-trendy skin care additive this year can likely be found in your grandma’s back yard. Yep, rose was the hottest ingredient of 2014. The floral showed up in everything from high-end creams likeChantecaille’s Rose de Mai Cream to the now-ubiquitous rosewater sprays like the one offered in the newly-launched Glossier line. Rose by-products have been touted as being anti-inflammatory, moisturizing having anti-oxidant capability—as if the relaxing aroma isn’t enough. Would a rose by any other name would smell as sweet? Not in your skin care anyway.
A more flexible filler:
Facial fillers have been around for years, but dermatologists were really excited when Juvederm Voluma XC launched. The filler technically gained FDA approval at the end of 2013, but has been making the rounds in a big way and gaining kudos from dermatologists this year. The filler is hyaluronic acid-based like many older fillers, but this one can last up to two years, nearly twice as long as its predecessors. Additionally, because of the physical qualities of Voluma, dermatologists can use it for sculpting and lifting because it’s so malleable and easy to work with.
Sometimes an oily face is good:
Who ever thought that we would be paying money to smear oil on our faces? There isn’t a major skin care brand out there that doesn’t offer a face oil option now. Oils can protect skin from free radicals, moisturize, and even theoretically help whatever skin care product you apply after the oil to absorb better. L’Oreal Paris released its Age Perfect Glow Renewal Facial Oil this year, the first mass market brand to do so, thus cementing facial oil’s slippery hold on the skin care market.
Wear a mask:
According to the NPD Group, which closely tracks sales trends in the cosmetics market, face mask sales were up 60% this year, and they’re not talking about Halloween. Sheet masks are made out of paper, cloth, hydrogel, and even sea kelp, and then infused with oils and serums. They have been hugely popular in Japan and more recently, Korea. Interest in the Korean skin care regimen has really picked up here in the U.S. over the last year, and sheet masks are an accessible way to try out the trend. You open the package, unfold it, put it on, and then basically lie on your couch and luxuriate in it for 20 minutes. A word of warning, though: These masks can make you look like Jason from the Friday the 13th movies. Use with caution around small children and pets.