I’ll admit, I wasn’t looking for a new vitamin. But as I unpacked an OLLY sample bottle, the promise of “undeniable beauty” granted just by popping two pink gummies a day was too alluring to refuse. Who doesn’t want healthy hair, dewy skin and strong nails amiright?
This is my first foray into the world of trendy vitamins. I’ve seen them on Instagram, and touted by beauty editors in magazines at the hair salon. But I always brushed them off as excessive. Why take a vitamin when you can eat nutrient-rich foods that serve the same purpose?
The problem with this idea though, is that we don’t always get enough of whatever vitamin it is that we need in food in order to address a specific issue. Take sleep, for instance. Sure there are foods like tart cherries, mustard seeds and fenugreek that contain naturally occuring melatonin. But how often are you snacking on fenugreek before bed?
Same goes for borage oil, which contains high levels of fatty acid gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), a strong anti-inflammatory. The plant-derived oil has been used to treat skin disorders, but isn’t common in the human diet so it often has to be supplemented.
Now’s a good time to remind you that we’re not doctors. We’re writers, which is basically the opposite profession and we don’t pretend otherwise. You should always consult your doctor and do your own research before starting a new supplement.
But if you’ve been wondering whether or not you should give one of these newish vitamin brands a try, I can tell you about my experience. Upon finishing the bottle of OLLY’s Undeniable Beauty vitamins, I decided to purchase my own because I was really digging them after a month.
OLLY Gummy Vitamins: The Pros
A bit of context: skin is not a mega issue for me. Do I have the greatest skin? No. I get hormonal breakouts around my period and it could be brighter, but in general it’s not too bad. I drink lots of water, eat healthy fats on the reg, and I’ve been using natural skincare and makeup for years now. But I was curious if maybe it could be even better, and if using a beauty supplement was the ticket. Enter: OLLY. Here’s what I liked about these fun little gummies.
Clarity Around Specific Benefits
People are really freaking confused about what supplements to take, what dosage, and how often. This is where speaking with your doctor can be helpful. Getting bloodwork done to determine any deficiencies can point you in the right direction based on your individual body’s needs.
This is what I like most about OLLY: if you can get past the ardent appeal to millennials in the marketing and branding, you’ll see that they address specific concerns millennials care about. “Goodbye Stress” or “Restful Sleep” are not just catchy names to smack on a brightly colored product label. Placing the emphasis on the benefits rather than the ingredients is more than brilliant business – it’s providing a solution for confused people who are looking to address specific problems. Instead of L-Theanine, they’re selling stress relief. Instead of melatonin, they’re selling sleep.
Convenience of Use
Back to the whole getting nutrients from food thing for a sec. Obviously, that’s the ideal route. And in many cases it’s possible to do so, but you need to be aware of which foods help which issues. That’s not easy, and it’s definitely not convenient. I know vitamin C is great for skin, but on days when I don’t have the right foods on hand it can be easier to supplement. Instead of trying to eat a million different types of foods for various reasons, popping a couple vitamins seems like a simple alternative.
As their website boasts:
OLLY formulas’ delicious flavors and vibrant colors come from all natural sources. Plus, our powerful bioactives like phytonutrients and antioxidant extract always come from nature’s hardest working ingredients.
It’s nice to see a vitamin that incorporates powerful whole food sources such as dandelion root and goji berries. They also taste great, which may help increase the likelihood of taking them.
The Cons of Supplementing with Gummy Vitamins
Added Sugar Content
That point about them tasting great? Yeah, there’s a reason. All of the OLLY vitamins I’ve looked at contain 2 grams of sugar, in the form of glucose syrup and/or beet sugar. While that’s not providing any nutritional value, very small amounts of glucose won’t be too destructive. I kinda wish they would just make these tasteless, so as to not include the added sugar, but you’re going to run into this with any tasty gummy.
Replacement for Dietary Nutrients
Not so much a con of this specific brand, more a general thought: supplements can’t replace a shitty diet. If you’re regularly eating a ton of processed foods or refined sugar, popping a vitamin won’t get you too far. There are also issues when it comes to skin like hormone imbalances, that probably won’t get sorted with a supplement. That’s when it’s best to speak with a dermatologist about your specific skin type. Maybe you’ll learn some of these supplements could be helpful, but it could be a crapshoot until you find out.
Adding to Your Routine
While I didn’t have a ton of issues to begin with, I’ve seen an improvement since incorporating Undeniable Beauty in the past couple of months. My skin’s clear, my nails strong, and my hair’s healthy. I haven’t tried some of the other skin-related options like Flawless Complexion or Vibrant Skin but I may throw those into the mix next time around. I’ve also started using Restful Sleep for nights when I can’t shut my brain off.
Combined with a great new skin care brand and the use of essential oils (more on that coming soon), I’m feeling pretty good in the beauty department. The price point, at $13.99 a bottle for 50 gummies, doesn’t hurt either.
Supplements aren’t a panacea for health or beauty concerns, but what I like about these new brands is the concept they’re peddling. If it’s general improvement you’re going for, maybe it’s time to start browsing the vitamin aisle at Target, as opposed to picking up a new concealer in the makeup section.
Have you tried OLLY or another vitamin brand? I’d love to hear your thoughts!
Featured image via Byrdie