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Scarlett Johansson has been walking red carpets since she was 12 years old, wearing Y2K outfits current TikTok girlies would kill for. That means, she’s been wearing makeup and getting her photo taken for 25 years. It’s safe to say, she’s been taking pretty great care of her skin and picking up some pro tips along the way — especially as the face of brands such as L’Oréal Paris and Dolce & Gabbana. Now, Johansson has a brand to call her own. The Outset is finally here and I tried the entire first drop.
In a Zoom with Johansson, she looked fresh-faced and makeup-free, with the kind of glowy, healthy skin everyone dreams of. She told us about her skin changing over the years and wanting to focus on more “clean” products now that she’s a mom. The tagline for her brand is “clean and effective skincare to elevate your every day” because she wanted to create an uncomplicated routine that you don’t need to be a pro to understand.
It was also important to Johansson to create products with “clean” formulations (there is no FDA standard for clean skincare), nixing things like sulfates, gluten, fragrances and other ingredients folks might be sensitive to. It’s also vegan, cruelty-free and as eco-friendly as possible.
The initial Outset drop is to get you started with the basics. The signature ingredient is Hyaluroset Complex, a hydrating blend that’s a botanical alternative to hyaluronic acid. It’s in the Gentle Micellar Antioxidant Cleanser, Firming Vegan Collagen Prep Serum, Nourishing Squalane Daily Moisturizer, Restorative Niacinamide Night Cream and Smoothing Vitamin C Eye + Expression Lines Cream.
To test Johansson’s line, I decided to put aside all my products with strong resurfacing actives (I love a glycolic acid) and have a simple routine for once. I have to admit, I thought my skin was going to feel dull and well, kind of sad. But it actually made me learn something about my skin.
Of course, The Outset contains actives to improve your skin. The eye cream has ascorbyl glucoside (a stable form of vitamin C), while the niacinamide-infused night cream helps to brighten and improve skin texture. So, it’s not like I was using nothing all week. Still, The Outset routine is more laid-back than my usual one.
I started getting hormonal breakouts in my 30s so I often use products for acne-prone skin out of fear of a pimple. After a few days, I realized this line wasn’t going to break me out. Score one for The Outset. While using this routine, I didn’t get the burning, tingling, instant gratification I get from other products and that can feel a little boring. But by the end of the week, I have to admit that my skin felt less sensitive and way more hydrated. In fact, The Outset made me realize my skin was in desperate need of hydration.
I’ll still use retinol and an at-home peel — and some anti-acne products, of course — but The Outset gave me the reset my skin needed and I’ll definitely be incorporating these products into my routine. I especially liked the hydrating, sulfate-free cleanser that removed my makeup but didn’t strip my skin. I’m looking forward to more from the brand, maybe even some products that are a little less simple. Hey, I can’t help who I am.