The skin is the largest organ of our body and plays a vital role in protecting us from environmental damage. It also provides insulation for delicate organs like the brain, lungs, heart and intestines. Skin care products are designed to improve your outer layer by cleaning it or hydrating it to prevent signs of aging as well as protect you from sunburns, blemishes and other problems that may develop over time.
The “skincare steps” is a blog post that outlines the correct order of skin care products. The blog post includes tips on how to use each product and when to use them.
We asked dermatologists the same question we ask ourselves every time we purchase a new skin care product or add a step to our routine: What order should I apply my skin care products in, and does it matter? It turns out that it does!
Continue reading for more information, or go to the summary infographic at the bottom: Your Skin Care Products in the Best Order
Why Does the Order in Which You Perform Your Skin Care Routine Matter?
Applying your skin care products in the correct sequence, according to Dr. Heather Rogers, a board-certified dermatologist and dermatologic surgeon, ensures that your skin gets the maximum advantages of each product.
“The sequence in which you apply your medications is critical,” Dr. Rogers explains. “The skin’s role is to keep things out, yet many of the skin care products we use include substances we don’t want in there.” Even when correctly made and administered, just a little quantity of these important chemicals can permeate the skin. You won’t get the finest effects from your skin care program if you don’t use items in the right sequence.”
Any Skin Care Routine’s Basics
Aside from the sequence in which you apply your products, some experts feel it’s also crucial to think about how long it takes your skin to absorb them. Dr. Rogers recognizes that this isn’t always achievable since most of us are in a hurry to go someplace (or get to bed). What is her recommendation? Maintain a modest skin-care regimen.
“Many products state that you should wait five to 30 minutes before proceeding to the following step to guarantee optimum absorption, but who has time for that? “If you make it too difficult, you won’t do it,” Dr. Rogers explains. “If you’re doing a lot of processes, take a minute to let each product react with the skin. For example, after washing my face and applying my serum or evening treatment at night, I just wrap up my day and go to my bed. I keep my moisturizer on my nightstand and apply it immediately before bed to allow these often costly specialist treatments a little more time to infiltrate the skin before sealing them in with my cream.”
Is there anything more I can say? Pay attention to your skin. Keep in mind that your skin is unique and that no one else has it. Whatever the professionals advise, it’s crucial to identify what works for you and to always treat your skin gently.
How to Layer Skin Care Products and Why Order Is Important
So, you’re wondering which product goes on top of which. Apply your skin care products from thinnest to thickest consistency, or from liquid to cream, as a simple rule of thumb. “Think thin-to-thick,” adds Dr. Rogers, “but you also want to start with the products that have the most vital components to permeate the skin (like antioxidants in serums) and conclude with the products that need to sit on top of the skin (like emollients and humectants in moisturizers).”
A Step-by-Step Guide for your Day-time Skin Care Routine:
According to Dr. Rogers, the morning regimen is all about protecting yourself from the sun, pollution, and the elements, so save your peel pads and therapy products like retinol for the evening.
Step 1. CLEANSING
Start your day by sprinkling warm water on your face or, if necessary, washing with a mild face cleanser tailored for your skin type.
Learn more: What Are the Different Types of Face Cleansers?
STEP 2. USE A TONER
The majority of individuals avoid toners, partially due to the misconception that toners are harsh and irritate the skin. Fortunately, that is no longer the case. While the latest generation of toners do not literally “shrink” pores, they may work as a delivery mechanism for antioxidants, vitamin-B derivatives, and even toning acids. Furthermore, since each kind of toner is designed to address a certain skin condition, it’s critical to use the correct one for your problem.
Dr. Rogers, on the other hand, believes there’s no need to start using a toner if you’ve never used one before and your skin is healthy. Dr. Rogers notes, “Toners were intended to help reset the skin’s pH when it become too basic from harsh cleansers.” “Toners are no longer necessary for me since face cleansers are so well balanced.” However, if you have a favorite toner, there’s no harm in sticking with it.
For additional information, see The Best Toners for Oily and Combination Skin.
Step 3. ANTI-OXIDANT SERUM
Because serums are highly concentrated, nutrient-dense treatments that target particular issues, it’s best to apply them as near to the skin as possible. There are a variety of serums on the market today, but Dr. Rogers suggests antioxidant serums for daytime use. Antioxidant serums provide a number of advantages, including reducing inflammation and neutralizing damage caused by UV radiation and environmental contaminants.
Step 4. EYE CREAM
Starting in your 20s, Dr. Annie Chiu, a board-certified dermatologist, recommends using an eye cream at least once a night, if not twice a day. “It’s all about keeping the eyelid skin healthy and thick. Improving the quality of the skin in this region early on guarantees that the eyelid skin retains its suppleness and smooth look later.”
Consistency is essential for the greatest outcomes. “Over time, regular usage of eye cream will maintain the eyelid skin elastic and may help to repair or prevent fine wrinkles and collagen loss.” Remember, there is no such thing as magic. “It doesn’t happen overnight,” Dr. Chiu continues. “You may protect the sensitive skin around your eyes even more by using an SPF eye cream or wearing sunscreen every day.” Dr. Chiu also recommends that individuals remember to wear sunglasses when they go outdoors to protect themselves against UV damage and lines that may form around the corners of their eyes as a result of squinting.
Step 5. SPOT TREATMENT
Prescription drugs and acne spot treatments, according to Dr. Diane De Fiori, a dermatologist at Rosacea Treatment Clinic, should be placed as near to the skin as possible to enhance their effectiveness.
Because active components in acne spot treatments vary, check the package or visit your doctor for the optimum application method. According to esthetician and acne expert Ashley Wiley, prescription-strength benzoyl peroxide, a typical acne spot-treatment component, has a one-to-three-hour working period. “Any cream that comes into touch with it before it’s finished functioning will most likely prevent the active component from doing its job correctly.”
Remember that acne spot treatments might cause your skin to dry up, so only use them on the areas where you need them.
Learn more: The Fastest Way to Get Rid of Pimples
Step 6. MOISTURIZER
Even if you have oily skin, you should use a moisturizer. “Even though your body has its own natural lubricating system comprised of glands that create oil (or sebum) to maintain a protective covering against harsh outside conditions and infections,” says Dr. Sandra Kopp, a board-certified dermatologist.
The optimal time to apply a moisturizer is when the skin is still wet, according to most experts, so the sooner you finish applying your serum and treatment, the sooner you can seal in much-needed moisture with your moisturizer.
If you’re using an acne spot treatment, avoid those areas while applying your moisturizer to ensure that the compounds in it don’t interfere with the active chemicals in your spot treatment.
Step 7. SUNSCREEN
If you’re using a physical or mineral sunscreen that works by physically blocking UV rays, it should be the final step in your daily skin care regimen. When applying a chemical sunscreen, this procedure becomes more difficult.
“Chemical sunscreens must be absorbed into the skin to be effective,” Dr. Rogers continues, “therefore applying after your moisturizer will delay and inhibit that.” However, since the skin is covered with chemical sunscreen, if you apply your chemical sunscreen before your moisturizer, your moisturizer will not perform as effectively.”
Dr. Rogers suggests using a physical sunscreen with zinc and applying it after your moisturizer to avoid this. “Zinc is safe, effective, and gives the broadest UVA and UVB protection.”
Those who like chemical sunscreens should seek for a product that also has moisturizing properties, so they can obtain their daily hydration while still protecting their skin.
More information: Face Sunscreens You’ll Want to Wear Every Day
A Step-by-Step Guide for your Night-time Skin Care Routine:
According to Dr. Rogers, since your skin naturally heals itself at night, your nightly regimen should focus on therapy and providing your skin with what it needs. “Exfoliate if your skin is looking dull. Hydrate and protect it if it’s inflamed.” Here’s how to use skin care products in the optimal sequence to get the most out of them:
STEP 1: CLEANSER (DOUBLE is Better)
Some experts advocate removing your makeup first using a specialised makeup remover before washing your face with a mild cleanser to get rid of the day’s filth, dirt, oil, and makeup. Better better, consider double cleaning, which entails first dissolving your makeup with a cleansing oil and then rinsing your face with your normal cleanser.
STEP 2: ESSENCES, BOOSTERS, AND TONERS
If you’re using a toner, use it the same way you would in the morning.
Some individuals prefer to layer different sorts of skin care boosters at night, such as mists, essences, beauty waters, or hydrating (hyaluronic acid) serums, which you’ll see as mists, essences, beauty waters, or hydrating (hyaluronic acid) serums. These are loaded with a variety of active substances, but the primary goal is to hydrate and nourish the skin.
Because they are light, almost water-like compositions, use them as a toner after washing your face. “If you’re using both, use toner first, then essence,” Dr. Rogers advises. “Toner is used to clean the skin, while essence is used to administer a therapy.” The same instructions apply if you’re using numerous boosters: start with the thinnest and work your way up.
STEP 3: EYE CREAM
Eye creams help protect your sensitive eye region from other skin care products in addition to treating crow’s feet and dark circles.
According to Dr. Rogers, “generally, you’d want to use your eye cream before your treatments to protect your eye region from powerful substances that might possibly create discomfort.”
STEP 4: TREATMENTS, SERUMS
Sleep is where our skin, like the rest of our bodies, accomplishes the majority of its mending, restoring, and rejuvenating. Most targeted skin care treatments, such as prescription medications (tretinoin, acne, and rosacea creams), retinol creams, exfoliating treatments (peel pads and masks), and anti-aging serums (loaded with peptides, growth factors, and other biologically active substances), are best used at night. Rather than stacking all of your treatment serums and creams, Dr. Rogers recommends selecting your nightly treatment based on your skin’s current requirements.
“Too many processes raise the danger of discomfort and diminish the probability of achieving the intended effect,” Dr. Rogers explains. “Choose your nightly treatment depending on what your skin need that evening, not on what you have in your medical cabinet. Some nights, all you have to do is shower, moisturize, and go to bed. There’s always tomorrow to lavish extra attention on your skin.”
Here are some more things to think about:
- Exfoliative treatments (such as AHA/BHA pads, peels, or detoxifying masks) or prescription medications (for acne or rosacea) are also options. “You dramatically increase your chance of irritating your skin if you use both on the same night,” Dr. Rogers says.
- Retinol creams (over-the-counter or prescription) should not be used on the same night as exfoliative treatments.
- Exfoliating treatments should be used only once or twice a week.
STEP 5: NIGHT CREAM OR RICH MOISTURIZER
Some individuals use the same moisturizer at night and throughout the day. Night moisturizers or night creams, on the other hand, are often thicker and heavier, and are intended to be absorbed over many hours.
“Moisturizer creates a protective covering on the skin to reduce water evaporation while you sleep,” explains Dr. Rogers. “Keeping the skin hydrated is essential for healing and keeping good skin.” It should be your final step if you’re using the appropriate moisturizer since nothing will get through it.” If your skin is really dry, use a face oil before applying your night cream.
Do you need a fast reference for your skin care routine? Check out our ultimate cheat sheet, which you can find below.
Watch This Video-
The “skin care 101 for beginners” is a blog that offers detailed information about skin care. This blog will also help you to understand the correct order of skin care products.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the correct order of skin care products?
A: We recommend that you use a serum, followed by an eye cream and then moisturizer. If your skin care is developed for your specific skin issues, such as dark circles or wrinkles, then the order would be reversed.
What are the 7 skin care steps?
A: The 7 skin care steps are as follows. Retinoids, antioxidants, vitamin C serums and creams, exfoliation with fruit acids or physical scrubs (depending on skin type), moisturizers of varying types depending on the purpose they serve like oil-based for dryness or hydrating lotions for oily patches.
What are the 5 skin care steps?
A: There are many skin care steps, but heres a list of some basic ones that you can follow to keep your skincare routine simple.
1. Cleanse- This removes dirt and debris from the surface of the face.
2. Tone- This helps lighten pigmentation, tighten pores, and hydrate all over the body for softer, smoother skin
3. Exfoliate -This is used to remove dead cells on top layers of your skin as well as improve circulation in order to make way for new healthier cells underneath
4. Serum/Oil – Apply this right after cleansing under eyes or any other facial area where dryness may occur with an application using cotton pads or gentle fingertips in circular motions until absorbed by the tissue 5.Moisturize will help seal moisture into each layer of your epidermis
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