Call them capsules, ampoules, or just plain balls—there's no denying that skin care is looking a little more compact these days. Perfected by scientists, new options are rolling into the beauty scene as brands such as Korea's J. One and timeless favorite Estée Lauder are prioritizing cleaner, convenient, and less wasteful products.
We asked New York-based dermatologist Dr. Janet Prystowsky to be our guide through the new world of capsule beauty. Get her tips for proper capsule use and then stock up on the products you'll need to revolutionize your beauty routine.
What Are These Things, Exactly?
"Capsules are like the individually wrapped candies of skin care," Prystowsky says. "They're single-serving, potent formulas that are kept airtight to maximize freshness." Capsules are produced as dissolvable spheres.
Why Are They Trending?
In a time when convenience and efficiency are a priority, it's no wonder capsule products are cropping up more and more frequently. "I see some big pluses to capsules, like always knowing exactly how much product is in a dose," Prystowsky says. Since capsules are prepackaged, they already have the amount of product that you need. That means it's easier to avoid overmoisturizing or drying out your skin by using too much of a product, and you're less likely to waste an expensive formula.
"Compared to mainstream pumps and jars, capsules are certainly going to be more hygienic." —Dr. Janet Prystowsky
Capsules also keep products more hygienic for every individual use. "Bacteria, mold, and other nasty things are constantly floating around in the air around us," Prystowsky says. "When we dip our hands into jars, we're introducing those nasties to a big jar of product we will then put on our skin. Capsules are more resistant to bacteria and mold."
How Do They Affect Skin?
"Capsules and ampoules are just different delivery systems for serums," she says. "But they're going to have more potent ingredients than your typical moisturizer." These tightly packed items all hold a powerful dose to ensure they deliver better results. So use these products sparingly, as applying too many layers of a powerful formula over time can cause irritation.
"The potent serum market is blooming right now, so I think it would make sense to see more capsules and ampoules showing up on store shelves." —Dr. Janet Prystowsky
Capsuled products make it easy to address all of your skin concerns. So if you notice skin looking tired, integrate some anti-aging capsules into your regimen a couple times a week until your natural radiance has been reinstated. Or if you're suffering from dry patches, try some hydrating beads for a week until the dead skin goes away. As always, talk to your dermatologist about your options!
What Does Their Future Hold?
Capsules aren't likely to be a flash in the pan. "The potent serum market is blooming right now, so I think we'll see more capsules and ampoules showing up on store shelves," Prystowsky says.
We have to wonder if that means skin care is going to get even smaller!