We are in the 21st Century, with thousands of sources of information at our fingertips, and yet this one topic is not clear for most women — the correct order to apply skincare products. Some women ask around, others turn to their estheticians. Some women find Instagram a little helpful, while a large chunk of them remain blissful in their ignorance. That’s why it became pertinent to write this blog and help with something as simple as — ‘Does moisturiser go first or serum?’
The Rule of Thumb
Remember this simple rule of thumb when applying your skincare products — the lightest always goes first, ascending to the heaviest skincare product. This ensures that the lighter products have penetrated the skin’s layers before the heavier ones cover the skin. Keeping this rule in mind, let us look at the correct order to apply your skincare products.
Apply your cleanser to the skin first so that your skin can be thoroughly cleaned. In case this is a night-time routine and you were wearing makeup, start with a makeup remover. Once you have wiped all makeup, then rinse with a cleanser for a blank canvas for other skincare products. The mild action of the cleanser not only removes dirt, dust and grime but also any excess oil and bacteria sitting deep inside your pores.
Toner is a product that many women ignore. It may not be an essential, but if you are using it, then apply it at this stage of your skincare routine. A toner will calm the skin, balance its pH after being cleansed, and ready it to absorb other products well. It is very runny in consistency, almost like water. Since it is the lightest and functions as a base, it goes first.
The serum is the next in line when it comes to consistency. It is runny but not as runny as water, usually applied by night. But some serums are also preferred in the day. In addition to its consistency, a serum is also applied early on in the skincare routine because it is a very potent product. Its molecules penetrate the skin’s pores and cells, making it work quickly and more effectively than an equivalent cream. So after your toner has settled a minute, apply your serum. Give it 2-3 minutes to get completely absorbed into the skin.
4. Eye Cream
While the serum is being sponged in by the skin, you can apply your eye cream. Youngsters may not be familiar with eye creams because their under eyes are generally quite bright and firm. But mature or aging skin needs its fair share of under-eye hydration. Hence you must gently dab the eye cream under your eyes.
Once the serum is fully absorbed by the skin, it is time for the most important product of the skincare routine — the moisturiser. Be it day or night, you cannot skip moisturiser. It helps hydrate the skin and keep it soft, supple, taut and healthy. You may belong to any age group and live in any kind of climate, but never give up on moisturiser. It is usually creamy or gel consistency, and hence heavier than serums. Therefore we apply it only once the serum has settled.
6. Spot Cream
Once the moisturiser has completely penetrated the skin, spot cream is the next step. Spot cream or treatment is not used by all. It’s usually specific to women who have problems like acne, pimples, blemishes or scars. Spot creams are applied only to the affected areas. They are not rubbed. They are dotted lightly and left alone for the most part.
7. Face Oil/ Retinol
Another couple of optional products — face oils and retinol. These are all applied at the very end of your basic skincare routine. While face oil is usually for hydration or other specific skin problem, retinol is for anti-aging (applied mostly at night).
If it is daytime, then your skincare routine is not complete without a sunscreen. Wherever you live, whatever you do, whatever your skin type is — it needs sun protection as the last and final layer. Do not skip it. Layer your skin with a mineral sunscreen high in SPF and only then go about your day. It will protect you from the harmful UVA and UVB rays of the sun that may cause sun tanning, burns, dark spots, aging, pigmentation etc.
Simple and effective, that’s the correct order to apply skincare products. You need to apply a bit of logic, be a little informed, and the world is your oyster. Add any more products to this routine, and based on the rule of thumb revealed above, you will be able to find a niche for that product in your routine. So all the best, and keep reading for more from Savarnas Beauty Spa!