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Drunk Elephant, is it Worth it as a Teen?

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Drunk Elephant, is it Worth it as a Teen?

Skin care is something everyone should know about. Having a good skincare routine is crucial if you want to build up your skin barrier and get rid of all the disgusting things that grow on your face. I’ve had a lot of friends tell me about the products they’ve been using on their skin and how good it was. But what happens when the skincare does more bad than good? 


As the growing popularity of different trends on social media apps, there comes a price. Currently people have been raving about the skincare brand Drunk Elephant. Drunk Elephant is an extremely viral skin care brand found in Sephora. Pre-teens and teenagers are buying, and using this brand because it is a trend right now, but sadly most are not researching the ingredients in these products properly. The only products that would be useful for 10 year olds in Drunk Elephant would be their Jelly Cleanser, Sunscreen, and Lip Balm. Without realizing, these young teenagers are putting products like Ferulic Acid on their skin. If you’ve never heard of this before that’s completely normal, as I too hadn’t heard of this before. Ferulic Acid is an organic acid found in serum for skin and the purpose of it is to prevent the appearance of red blood vessels under the skin. 


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First off, why are 10 to 15 year olds concerned about the appearance of red blood vessels? Well most of them aren’t. Yes, there are a bunch of people that bought the product because of the benefits in the ingredients, But majorities are buying this skincare specifically because of the brand name or “aesthetic”. Yet, people still are convinced that giving Drunk Elephant, or any skincare with these ingredients for that matter, to teenagers isn’t that big of a deal. While I’m not a professional skincare expert, my dermatologists are. I’ve been to three dermatologists in my life in which all of them have strictly told me along the same lines of “Nobody under the age of 14 should be putting any sort of acid on their face for skin care, let alone an excessive amount of acid on their face”. The reality of the product is that in total there’s over 12 different acids used in total in their ingredients. 


But acids aren’t even the most damaging part of these ingredients. One of the main ingredients in drunk elephant products is nicotinamide. Nicotinamide is a chemical that goes into a lot of skin care. It is used to help reduce wrinkles, clean out pores, and provide anti aging. There’s also Cetostearyl oil. This is an oil that can soften the skin, and probably most important they have retinol in it. Retinol is used for anti aging, and is a very powerful ingredient. On surface level none of these are bad for your skin. Which is true for the most part, but children using this is a huge problem. As usual if you want to have healthy skin and still use retinol, it is highly recommended to use it around mid to late 20s and early 30s. While you still can use retinol at a young age for certain skin types it most of the time is not advised. The reason being that kids may irritate their skin as they may not know their skin type. Another problem with all of the anti aging helping products is simple. Kids have little to no wrinkles to get rid of. Children that are 10 years old are practically wasting their time and money on something they just don’t need. 


While on the topic of money, I need to talk about the pricing of Drunk Elephant. Since Drunk Elephant is a popular brand it’s no surprise that it would be a little expensive. As of right now the cheapest item to buy at drunk elephant is a 60ml Jelly Cleanser costing 16 dollars. On the other hand the most expensive product costs 134 dollars and is a 50ml glycolic serum. Now if we compare the Drunk Elephant Jelly Cleanser to a different Sephora skin care product, which is the Glossier Jelly Cleanser. The Glossier Jelly Cleanser coats around 20 dollars and has 177ml of the product. There is an obvious difference in price and amount of product. Even though you are paying around 4 dollars more, if Drunk Elephant had made their cleanser cost 20 and have 75 ml there would still be a 102ml difference. Now looking at Drunk Elephants Glycolic serum compared to popular skin care brand The Ordinary. On The Ordinary’s website you can get a glycolic serum for around 10 dollars for 240ml of the product. Which is a crazy difference as getting The Ordinary’s serum you save 124 dollars and get 190ml more of the product. While yes, not everything in the ingredients will be the same. But the price and amount is still such a huge difference especially because Drunk Elephant don’t really have anything special ingredient wise. 


But even for the price difference and quantity difference, these kids are probably not going to buy any of these. The main reason is because most children buy this brand solely because it’s “aesthetic”, it’s trending, and it’s something to put on their face. Most of these children are buying these products because of the brand name and the looks. And with Drunk Elephant being so expensive it makes people wonder where they are getting money to buy things like this. And not only is Drunk Elephant popular but it’s also pushed as a cruelty free brand which adds extra reasons why people love it so much. 


While on the surface level Drunk Elephant being a cruelty free brand is a great thing. And yes Drunk Elephant being cruelty free is amazing. But Drunk Elephant is owned by a company called Shiseido. And Shiseido Company is one of the biggest animal testing companies in the world. And buying Drunk Elephant because it is cruelty free isn’t doing much as Shiseido will get some of the money and completely counteracts the purpose of buying it for cruelty free. 


Looking more into the Drunk Elephant trend, you also will see the trend of mixing their products to make a “skin care smoothie”. While it can be nice to mix the product this idea is bad for a few reasons. One of the reasons being that not all of the ingredients in the products work together, in the sense that the products can become gloopie and separated. The next reason is that most of the products from Drunk Elephant have penetration enhancing ingredients which, to put it in simple words, helps decrease barrier resistance. And with products that include the penetration it’s bad to water it down. And lastly, making this smoothie can irritate your skin. Not only mixing these with your hands and having it just stay there can promote the growth of bacteria. But most of the products that go in these smoothies counteract each other and depending on these products, can cause breakouts, redness, and irritation. 


While I do understand that this article probably won’t make a difference to children or parents, I think it’s important to really do research and understand what’s going on in your face and what it can do to you. If children really want to continue buying Drunk Elephant, it doesn’t really affect me. But it’s still important to understand everything and think about the future. 

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About the Contributor
Abbie Landers
Abbie Landers, Writer and Editor
Meet Abbie, a Freshman who loves drawing, taking pictures, and  She is passionate about the arts. She loves spending time with her friends and family. She has two dogs Milo and Odie. She's learning four languages which are French, ASL, Korean, and German. But she's best at Korean and French. She dreams of  traveling the world and at some point learns Russian. She's in Culinary, Drama Club, and YAB. In her free time she makes storyboards and designs. She hopes that her stories will inspire people to write.
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