Skin was in for 2020. It seems everyone buffed, exfoliated, moisturized, and slathered their way through an unforgettable year — and that's putting it lightly. With a surplus of time spent at home, beauty fans have scrolled their way through the plethora of new products that arrived this year, reading up on brand-new, vitamin-rich ingredients or completely novel approaches to the industry. So, when it was time to look back and decide which new launches were the best skin care products from 2020, what better metric to use than popularity?
To decide, TZR took a look at which stories were read the most this year, pulling together a list of 2020 product launches that were the most popular with readers. You can find the top 20 products of the year, ahead. As you'll be able to see, there's no defining trend when it comes to brands, preferences, or routines; while the Laura Mercier's Skin Essentials Collection took the very first spot, Elaluz’s All Day Beauty Water was right behind it, showcasing how prestige beauty and new brands alike are defining what's in with consumers.
Without further ado, the top 20 products from 2020, according to TZR readers.
We only include products that have been independently selected by The Zoe Report's editorial team. However, we may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.
1. Laura Mercier Skin Essentials Collection
Rounding home base, Laura Mercier's entire Skin Essentials Collection is the top pick from 2020, proving that this mega-popular brand's foray into skin care was a clever addition.
2. Elaluz All Day Beauty Water
A simple spritz is all you need from this well-loved facial mist, which boasts moisturizing oils, antioxidant-rich guarana extract, and exfoliating papaya extract.
3. Bare Hands Dry Gloss Manicure Kit
Technically a nail product, we're counting the Bare Hands’ Dry Gloss Manicure Kit since it stars Instagram's favorite cuticle oil.
4. Wishful Chin Lift Sculpting Sheet Mask
The Wishful Chin Lift Sculpting Sheet Mask combined two trends: sheet masking target areas, and anything inspired by Korean skin care.
5. Starface Space Wash Cleanser
Up-and-coming skin brand Starface slowly but surely expanded throughout 2020 and the Space Wash Cleanser, launched in May, was its very first face wash.
6. Billie Super Salve
TZR readers were very intrigued by the Billie beauty collection that arrived in March; it included the below lip balm, plus dry shampoo and skin care wipes.
7. Flamingo Ingrown Spot Treatment
Not to be outdone, equally Instagram-famous shaving brand Flamingo launched an Ingrown Spot Treatment this year, right in time for all the at-home hair-removal woes.
8. New Beauty Brand MELĒ
Another collection-wide story, the launch of the skin care brand MELĒ garnered attention — it debuted with four products formulated for melanin-rich skin.
9. Laneige Glowy Makeup Serum
The Laneige Glowy Makeup Serum was a cult hit right out the gate, with tons of attention paid to the skin-makeup hybrid since day one. Which makes sense, seeing as this oil-minimizing serum can be used as a makeup primer, too.
10. Honest Beauty Prime + Perfect Mask
Are you a morning masker? Then the Honest Beauty Prime + Perfect Mask will be your new best friend. It only needs to be left on 30 minutes tops, and packs in shea butter along with vitamin E.
11. Herbivore Botanicals Pink Cloud Cleanser
Spoiler alert: Finding a truly gentle facial cleanser is difficult. Fans rejoiced when Herbivore Botanicals launched this ultra-soft Pink Cloud Cleanser — it's as gentle and non-stripping as, well, a cloud.
12. Elemis Superfood Cica Calm Hydration Juice
Cica, short for Centella asiatica, is a fan favorite amongst skin care fans battling irritation or redness. This fast-absorbing launch from Elemis offers the ingredient in a calming gel texture.
13. Kinship Mint Mud Mask
The basic clay mask got a makeover this May with the Kinship Mint Mud mask. As you can probably guess, peppermint oil plays a role — but so do lactic acid, a lactobacillus ferment, and aloe juice.
14. Sephora Collection Skincare Fridge
Skin care fridges continued to be a covetable addition to any routine this year, and when Sephora's in-house brand debuted one for $60, it was worthy of celebration.
15. Caudalie Vinoperfect Instant Brightening Moisturizer
Unveiled in April, the Vinoperfect Instant Brightening Moisturizer really does live up to its name: the niacinamide will brighten skin in the long term, while mica perks up your glow as soon as you apply it.
16. New Beauty Brand Khalm Skincare
Harnessing the skin-soothing power of the oud essential oil, the new brand Khalm Skincare debuted earlier this year with three products — cleanser, a mattifying moisturizer, and this luxe oil.
17. New Beauty Brand Resoré
Resoré had a very strong start this October. For one, its towels boast antibacterial material that's great for skin. Two, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley is its ambassador.
18. Peach & Lily Pure Peach Retinoic Eye Cream
Similarly, Peach & Lily's first-ever eye cream was a hit for two reasons — the brand is well known for its ability to transform skin, and retinol alternatives were all the rage for 2020.
19. Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin Body Lotion
Number 19 on this list is Dr. Jart+'s Ceramidin collection expansion, a new body product that showed, once and for all, ceramides can be used all over.
20. Hand Creams... Like, All Of Them
We don't need to tell you why hand cream trended this year — hand washing plus dry weather equals lots and lots of lotion. For the last spot on this list, we felt it right to nod to this highly read round-up of the very best hand creams.