As a beauty blogger, I consistently get asked “How should I layer my skin care products?”. I understand my skin. But, I don’t have much understanding of anyone else’s skin because we are all uniquely different. So, it’s a little difficult for me to give a definitive answer for this question. To provide some insight into how layering could look, I’m sharing what I typically do and the types of products I use in the morning and at night:
The first half of my routine is to always cleanse my skin. Cleansing helps to rid skin of product, sweat and dirt. It also preps the skin for the rest of my skin care routine:
- My skin is dry/sensitive so I put most of my focus on using products that don’t irritate my skin. So, I have different cleansing routines for day and night.
- Morning: I personally use a micellar water most days instead of a traditional cleanser. It has made the biggest difference in my dry skin to skip cleansing in the morning. If you are oily/acne-prone I would not recommend skipping a morning cleanse.
- Night: I always double cleanse, starting with a cleansing oil/balm and ending with a gentle gel/milk/cream cleanser. Double cleansing helps to remove any remaining dirt and residue and to ensure my pores are properly being purged of anything left behind.
- A facial mask is optional for me. When I use one, it’s always the step after cleansing. Because masks are rinse-off, I feel like for this step to come anywhere else in the process is a waste. I am not particularly a fan of leave-on masks. So even if the product instructions say to leave it on or tissue off excess, I rinse it off.
- Next, I use a toner or mist to my freshly cleansed skin. Toner helps to balance skin’s pH and replenish its moisture. I use a cotton round to apply thinner toners and my fingers for thicker toners, gently pressing it into my skin to ensure maximum absorption.
- Morning: I use a light mist or canned facial water.
- Night: I use an (exfoliating) toner followed by a light mist or canned facial water.
- Lastly, I’ll apply a vitamin c and/or hyaluronic acid serums. Sometimes I’ll use just the Vitamin C (it’s a staple for me) because it promotes repair and growth of the skin tissue and protects the skin against free radicals. When using more than one product, I layer them by applying the thinnest serum first and working my way through them by applying the thickest serum last.
The second half of my routine consists of hydrating and moisturizing the various sections my skin. A lot of people feel that the product order should be: moisturizer, oil and/or eye cream. Others have argued that eye cream should come first. Really, there are many combinations and there has yet to be a firm declaration on what’s right. For me, it really does depend on how I am feeling.
- For me, eye cream is the first product that I use after cleansing. I feel like since the skin around the eyes is so delicate it does demand its own dedicated product. This is completely up to you. If you are using a nourishing face serum/moisturizer then that is fine to skip an eye cream. But, keep in mind that fine lines and wrinkles can appear on the eye area early on due to the skin there being thinner.
- Once the eye cream has time to sink in I will use a non-SPF moisturizer. Since I do have dry skin I typically use a cream moisturizer during the day. I like to let it naturally sink in for a bit before applying the next product, if I have the time. I think giving products time to absorb into skin is the key to successfully layering.
- The next products that I apply depend upon whether or not it’s day or night-time.
- Morning: I apply an SPF and make sure to let it absorb for at least 20 minutes prior to going outside. I also make sure to apply a lip balm with SPF.
- Night: I apply my facial oil as my final step. I used to apply my facial oil after my serum. But I found out (by doing research) that anything you put on top of oil will not penetrate past it. So I typically end my nighttime routines with an oil.
This is my personal routine and it may not work best for you. I feel strongly that you should do what works best for your own skin. There are many people who think that you have to be very strict and apply products in a certain order. But, nobody knows your skin better than you do.
Also, it’s okay if you’re still trying to find products and a routine that works for your skin. Be open to educating yourself and maybe playing around with different products and their placements in your routine. to see if perhaps doing things a different way could improve your skin.
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