In this article, we will be answering one question: what is the difference between cosmetic-grade and pharmaceutical-grade skin care products? other than the pricey tag!

The main difference between the two is in the ingredients. Take a closer look at your product ingredients, are they cosmetic or pharmaceutical grade? and does it really matter?

The short answer is YES and here’s why: 

Cosmetic-Grade Ingredients

Cosmetic-grade products, commonly purchased at your local drugstore are not held to the same standard as pharmaceutical-grade products.
Cosmetic-grade products may be made with non-pure ingredients that contain numerous filler ingredients which in turn offer a minimal effect.

Pharmaceutical-Grade Ingredients

Pharmaceutical-grade products are regulated as drugs, their ingredients must be 99.9% pure and undiluted. It must lack impurities and conform to what it claims to do.
Majority of medical-grade companies use highly stabilized ingredients that last longer and take longer to degrade. 
Another great advantage to these pharmaceutical-grade products is the strong clinical evidence. 

Only 5% of the entire skin care industry can meet such high standards to be considered Pharmaceutical-Grade. iS Clinical is one of those skin care lines- all of their products are formulated with L-Ascorbic Acid, pharmaceutical grade, Vitamin C.
Generally, brands that are sold in drugstores contain lower amounts of active ingredients, such as, Retinol and Vitamin C, in order to be irritation-free for a broad consumer base. Health Canada also has legal restrictions on the amount of active ingredients in products sold at mass retailers. For an example, 10% is the highest concentration of glycolic acid allowed in skincare products sold outside of dermatologists’ offices and clinics. With such potent products, an expert must prepare the patient for possible side effects, such as irritation and sun sensitivity. The decision to sell a skincare line through a clinic’s office can also simply be that the manufacturer may believe that the product is best served with a skin expert that can explain it’s proper use!

iS Clinical and ZO Skin Health products only contain the highest quality of Pharmaceutical-Grade ingredients. 
Not only that… but the ingredients are derived come from the best part of the plant, which contains the highest quality and concentration of that specific ingredient!

Giving you a bang for your buck! 


Your local skin experts

Beauty in every skin colour
Become a VIP member | Stay up to date on sales, events & news!