How Does Virtual Dermatology Work? I Tried the Skincare App Curology to Find Out​

POPSUGAR Photography / Eric Helgas

In the age of Amazon and Instacart, there’s not much we can’t get at the click of a button – or while stuck inside our homes. From clothes to makeup to home decor, “I want it, I got it” is more or less our motto in 2020. But when things get medical – from primary care to dermatology and beyond – you enter a major grey area.

As life becomes increasingly more digital (especially in the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak), it’s no surprise that online healthcare offerings are expanding. There’s Capsule, essentially the Uber of pharmacies, and Care/Of, personalized vitamin plans in aesthetically pleasing packaging. Even your primary provider is embracing the shift with digital test results, online message portals, and various forms of telemedicine. But the big question remains: how much can be done without actually seeing a patient in person?

On the beauty front, dermatology might be one of the only professional services we can access online. Unlike a trip to the hair, nail, or wax salon, technically it doesn’t require person-to-person contact; words and photos might be enough to diagnose and treat a breakout or skin concern. And I’m determined to find out just how accurate that can be using a digital derm service that’s been on my radar for months: Curology.

Not only does the app promise to cure your skin concerns with its curated regimen, but it does so on a personalized basis, thanks to its in-house providers. It all starts with a quiz and three photos. Curious to see how it works? I’m walking you through the process ahead.

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