Is Bespoke Skincare Worth Its Hype?
A Magazine Singapore|December 2021 - The Dream Issue
We are all unique individuals – so if we can buy customised cars, clothes, jewellery and shoes, why should our skincare be “one-size-fits-all”? We take a deeper look at bespoke skincare to find out how and why it is gaining undercurrents of popularity.
Syed Zulfadhli
When it comes to skincare, buying products over the counter has been our modus operandi for decades, until the advent of online shopping. Meanwhile, 2021 alone has seen numerous launches, re-launches, and new brands sprouting up and targeting a global audience. The idea of purchasing mass-produced formulas doesn’t seem like such an unreasonable option – if it works for people with a similar skin type, it should work for me too, right?

It doesn’t matter if you’re forking out $10 for a simple cleanser at the drugstore or splurging over $1,000 for exotic serums at luxury brands – buying over the counter is all about convenience. The brands you know well have spent thousands of dollars on research and development, paid for the right advertising avenues, nurtured influencers who can speak about their products knowledgeably, and made sure consumers can easily get their hands on their products from stores or through online shopping platforms. In short, they’ve tried to make their skincare as right for you as possible.

However, due to genetics, lifestyle choices, hormonal changes and ageing, our skin is ever evolving. No two skin types are ever the same, and even the condition of our skin today will not be as it was yesterday. Because of these factors, there is a risk that these generic skincare formulas may not always work for us, especially when the state of our skin is constantly fluctuating. This is one of the main reasons why bespoke skincare has emerged as a friendlier option to our skin woes.

Why Bespoke Beauty?

The concept of bespoke skincare has existed for decades, but only in recent years did the trend spike. One brand that hits close to home is MTM Skincare.

MTM Skincare was launched in Japan in 1991 and introduced to Singapore in 2003 when Dr Susan Teng bought over the company and introduced the brand’s concept of customisation to Singaporeans. The brand took offand gained success and recognition thanks to its novel concept. The brand was renamed mtm labo in June 2021 and is now run by Kelly Keak, managing director of the company and Dr Susan Teng’s daughter.

In 2008, Singaporean entrepreneur Sabrina Tan founded Skin Inc, hoping to introduce straightforward products that are “one size fits me” rather than “one size fits all”. While mtm labo’s products claim to tap into the powers of nature and botany in its custom blended formulations, Skin Inc’s formulations are led by science, innovation, and technology.

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