Keeping your skin supple, healthy and radiant-looking is important to you. So, you have invested in a few quality skincare products and you’re all set to start your new anti-aging, skin-preserving routine. But, in what order should you apply your skincare products?
As it so happens, the sequence in which you apply skincare products is important for getting the optimal benefits of each one. As a rule of thumb, apply products with the thinnest consistency first, such as your cleanser, toner and serum. Finish with those that have a thicker consistency, such as your moisturiser, emollient or sunscreen.
Here’s the best way to layer your skincare products for the best results.
Step One: Cleanse
The first step in any good skincare routine is cleansing. In the morning, depending on your skin type, you can get away with splashing your face with warm water and patting it dry with a towel. In the evening, use a gentle cleanser made for your skin type. Generally, water-based cleansers are suited to those with oily skin, and oil-based cleansers are best for dry skin types. Don’t choose harsh cleansers in a pursuit to deep clean your skin. This can strip your skin’s natural, protective barrier.
Step Two: Tone
Although a toner is an optional step, it is recommended. If you have bought yourself a cleanser, apply it after your have washed your face. In addition to removing lingering dirt and grime from your pores, a good toner will feed your skin with antioxidants, nutrients and toning acids. If you have used a deep-cleaning face wash, your toner will help to restore your skin’s pH balance. Once again, pick a toner suited to your skin type. If you have dry or sensitive skin, choose a hydrating toner.
Step Three: Feed
Feeding skin with serums is widely recommended by experts. Serums are highly-concentrated with antioxidants and nutrients like vitamin C to protect your skin against ultraviolent radiation (UV) damage and pollutants. Most serums are designed to address specific skin concerns so choose one that meets your needs. If you don’t have a particular skin concern, a vitamin C serum is an all-round, excellent choice. Apply your serum straight after your toner to give your skin the maximum benefit. Eye creams should also be applied at this stage!
Step Four: Treat
If you have problematic skin that is prone to pimples or other conditions such as eczema, this is the stage when you should apply your special ointments, creams or prescription treatments. These need to be applied as close to the skin as possible in order to be absorbed optimally and do their work. Acne treatments should only be applied on affected areas so as not to dry-out healthy skin. Read the package insert or ask your dermatologist if you are worried about your other skincare products interacting with your prescription ointments for acne or eczema.
Step Five: Moisturise
Even if you have oily skin, you still need to moisturise it. Give your skin a healthy dose of hydration and lock-in all of the goodness of your serum, as well as the active ingredients of your treatment products, with a layer of moisturiser. This step should follow closely after the previous steps in your routine, while your skin is still damp and receptive to the hydrating ingredients in your moisturiser. Use a lighter moisturiser in the day and a thicker, creamier version at night.
Step 6: Protect
Protecting your skin against the damaging effects of the sun’s rays is incredibly important. So, applying a sunscreen should form part of your daily skincare routine. Nowadays, many foundations and moisturisers are produced with a sun protection factor. If your moisturiser or foundation doesn’t contain a sun protection factor, you will need to apply sunscreen. Importantly, if you are going to be spending a lot of time in the sun, a minimum sun protection factor of 30 is a must. Apply your sunscreen straight after moisturising. You could also opt for a quality, moisturising sunscreen in place of your moisturiser in the morning!