How to Layer Skin Care Products in Their Correct Order

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Are you layering your skincare products properly? Read this to find out.

Many of us have a complicated routine for our skincare products, mainly as we use different types of products to achieve flawless skin.

However, there might be abundant questions that may arise about the order in which you should use these products, especially if you have a full skincare routine.

Should you go from the thinnest consistency to the thickest consistency from start to finish? Is the order based on time and not product? Does pH need to be taken into account when ordering your products?

This post will explain how to layer skin care products correctly to get the most out of your routine and not make any mistakes.

How to Layer Skin Care Products in Their Correct Order

Everyone keeps telling you how important it is to use your beauty products in the right order. Did you ever wonder why? That’s because the different textures and uses of your skincare products can make or break the health of your skin.

Let’s look at some of the benefits of layering skincare products correctly.

Benefits of Layering Skincare Correctly

Proper layering of skincare products ensures that each ingredient reaches its full potential. The active ingredients will be able to penetrate the skin and work more effectively.

how to layer skincare products

Layering your skincare in the right order can also reduce the risk of redness and irritation, due to not mixing incompatible ingredients together.

Here are some tips for properly layering your skincare products:

  • If you have a long list of skincare products to use, don’t be tempted to use them all at once.
  • Never mix different active ingredients together, such as retinol or vitamin C, or you may experience stinging or redness
  • Depending on the texture and consistency of your skincare products, you should layer them.

Thumb Rule for Correctly Layering Skincare Products

To layer your skincare products, you should always start with the lightest and work toward the heaviest.

  • The lightest products should always be used first and applied to clean skin for better absorption. Once they have absorbed into the skin, apply serums and heavier creams until you reach your heaviest product.
layering skincare
  • Water-based vs. oil-based: Water-based products should be applied before oil-based ones; this ensures that all of the ingredients are being absorbed by the skin in the correct order and not simply sitting on top of it.

Let us now look at the correct order of how to layer skin care products

Step 1: Cleanser

Whether you’re new to the world of skincare or experienced, using a cleanser is essential. It’s the first step in your routine: the foundation on which the rest of your skin-care products are applied.

face wash 1

 Using a cleanser means that any other skin-care products will have a better chance of working correctly—and properly aligning with your skin’s needs. While different people have different skin types and requirements, the best way to choose a cleanser is first by asking yourself the following questions:

Do I have any visible breakouts? Do I have whiteheads or blackheads? Am I prone to acne? Do I have sensitive skin? Does my face feel tight after cleansing? It will help you pick the correct cleanser.

ceraVe cleanser
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All you have to do is massage your face in a circular motion for a few minutes to make sure it’s clean, and then wash it off with lukewarm water.

Step 2: Toner

After cleansing the next step to use is a toner! You may have used toners in the past, but never knew what they were or why you should use them.

Toners are typically applied after cleansing your skin and help to restore your skin’s pH. They also remove any leftover dirt or oil that is missed by the cleanser, and they tighten pores to give your skin a more healthy look. 

how to properly layer skincare products

Toners can come in different types from hydrating to exfoliating or treatment-based. hey have a watery consistency and thus get quickly absorbed. It is advised to use the type of toner that is suited for your skin type. 

If you have oily skin and large pores, use a toner with BHA or AHA (AHA). If you have dry skin, look for toners with hyaluronic acid and rose water and avoid using avoid alcohol-based toners. For sensitive skin, it is best to use moisturizing toners containing hyaluronic acid and glycerin.

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Toners help prepare the canvas of your face so that other ingredients later down the line absorb better into your pores; essentially priming it for what’s next!

Step 3: Serum

Serums are a skincare step that should be incorporated into your morning and evening routines, after cleansing and toning the skin. They are usually formulated with active ingredients that can help treat a variety of skin concerns

top layer skincare product

Serums are lightweight skincare products that are often made with water or an oil base, which means they sink deep into the skin without leaving any greasy residue on top of the skin.

Since serums are concentrated forms of skincare products with active ingredients like vitamin C or retinol (vitamin A), it’s important to consider what you want out of them before choosing one based on price or brand name alone.

loreal hyaluranoic serum
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 For instance: If you’re suffering from large pores, try using niacinamide (vitamin B3) because it might shrink their appearance over time; if you’re worried about dark spots or pigmentation from acne scars, go with vitamin C.

If you’re concerned about uneven texture, choose lactic acid and if you want extra hydration throughout the day, use hyaluronic acid serums, which help lock moisture in the skin for a plumper and smoother appearance.

Step 4. Eye Cream

After Serum, next, apply your eye cream of choice. When you’re looking for an eye cream, you should ask yourself the same questions about what you’re trying to achieve that we mentioned in step one!

skincare routine

A lightweight cream like CeraVe Eye Repair Cream is a great option if you have eyes that are prone to puffiness. For those with dark circles, a hydrating eye cream like Cetaphil Deep Hydration Refreshing Eye Cream with Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamin E & B5 should do the trick.

When applying your eye cream, simply dab it on in half-moons under each eye and gently pat it into the skin until it’s fully absorbed! As far as how much product to use—a small amount is all you need since this area is so delicate.

cerave eye cream
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That said, using an eye cream at least every night—if not twice a day—is vital for keeping this area healthy and hydrated. Why? Because it’s thinner than the rest of our faces and contains less moisture-retaining fatty tissue!

Step 6: Spot Treatment

Once, you have applied the eye cream, the next thing you should apply is the spot treatment if you are facing any skin problems. Let us see this skincare step in detail.

spot treatment

What is it: A spot treatment serves as a targeted solution to specific skin concerns, such as acne or dark spots.

How to use: Lightly dab onto the affected area and blend gently until absorbed. Do not apply all over the face, focus only on the specific skin concerns.

When to use: It is best to apply spot treatment before moisturizer so that the solution can penetrate the skin better than if there were an extra layer of cream on top of it. (The same goes for any other heavy products, like sleeping masks.)

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While this step isn’t necessary for your routine, depending on your current skin situation and/or goals, it can be very helpful in addressing your main skincare concerns.

Step 7: Moisturizer

After you put on the spot treatment, wait a few minutes before you apply the moisturizer. 

Moisturizer is an important step in taking care of your skin. It doesn’t matter if your skin is oily, prone to acne, or has sensitivity because it’s the only thing that will hold your skin barrier, which is what gives your face a healthy glow.

moisturizer for sensitive skin

When it comes time for moisturizer, you should take the time to apply it in the correct order. The first step is choosing the moisturizer that is best suited for your skin type and needs.

You want something that will give your skin enough moisture without causing irritation or clogging pores. This means finding something that won’t aggravate your facial area while penetrating deep within it enough to give it everything it needs. 

neutrogena moisturizer
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If you have dry, mixed, or normal skin, go for a cream-based moisturizer. Whereas, if you have oily skin, choose lightweight water- or gel-based moisturizers.

To use it right, you should pat in as much of the moisturizer as possible to let it sink into your skin completely. You don’t want any excess layer left on top

Step 8: Face Oil

Now that you have a clean, toned, hydrated, and moisturized face, it’s time to bring in the big guns: Face oil.

Oil is essential for maintaining healthy skin because it regulates oil production. Not using enough oil may cause your skin to overcompensate by producing too much oil. Hence why people with oily skin often find themselves in a vicious cycle of cleansing and drying out their skin.

face oil

To use your face oil correctly, apply 2–3 drops to the palm of your hand and rub them together before rubbing them into your face. This will help warm up the oils so they can effectively penetrate the outer layer of your skin. 

If you have an oily complexion, opt for lightweight oils such as jojoba or tea tree (an added bonus if you’re prone to breakouts!).

rosehip face oil
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Alternatively, if you have dry or mature skin, heavier oils like rosehip seed work well at locking in moisture while reducing redness and fine lines.

Step 9: Sunscreen (if it’s daytime)

Sunscreen is the last and the top layer skincare product before you start applying your makeup. You want to apply your sunscreen on top of your moisturizer because if you don’t, the sun will damage it and make it less effective.

sunscreen in summer

If you’re using a moisturizer that has SPF in it, you still need to apply sunscreen on top of it (at least SPF 30). Sunscreen should be applied 15-20 minutes before going outside and then reapplied at least every 2 hours.

It is recommended to select a broad-spectrum sunscreen that protects against both UVA and UVB rays since both contribute to skin cancer.

EltaMD UV Clear Facial Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 46
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The higher the SPF, the better—just make sure you’re applying enough of it for it to be effective (about a nickel size for your face alone). And don’t forget to apply it to your neck too

Wrapping Up: 9-Step Guide To Layer Skincare Products

That’s pretty much it! We hope this guide has been helpful and gets you closer to mastering how to layer skin care products in their correct order!

Indeed, skincare products come with a wide variety of claims, from improving your complexion to restoring elasticity. While many of these promises might seem like they’re too good to be true, there are certainly some that can work wonders for your skin

All you have to do is find the right product for you and make the right steps while layering them. Also, when you’re using a new product, always do a patch test before applying it all over your face. This is important for the best results and to avoid any adverse reactions.

Let us know in the comments if you follow the same steps when layering skincare products.

What is the correct way to layer skincare products?

When layering skincare products, you should always start with the one that is thinnest and work your way up to the one that is thicker. This will allow each skincare product to penetrate deeper into the skin for effective results.

What to apply first serum or toner?

Toners should always be used first because they are the thinnest. You should use a toner right after you wash your face since this helps your skin get ready to absorb other products better.

What are the basic steps of a skincare routine?

No matter what skin type you have, there are five basic steps you should always do when taking care of your skin, even if you are just starting out.

They are cleaning your face, keeping it hydrated with toners, Using Serums, and actives, Applying a moisturizer, and Putting on sunscreen to prevent sun damage.

How do I choose a moisturizer?

When looking for a moisturizer, choose the one that works best for your skin type and what it needs. You can use a cream-based moisturizer if your skin is dry, mixed, or normal. If you have oily, stick to lightweight water- or gel-based moisturizers.

Can you skip sunscreen at home?

Sunscreen is the most important part of a skin care routine, and even if you stay indoors, you shouldn’t skip this step. It is best to choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher that blocks both UVA and UVB rays.

When you don’t wear sunscreen, you can damage the collagen and connective tissue in your skin. This can cause your skin to lose its elasticity, which can give you wrinkles.

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Swaliha Baza, born and raised in Mumbai, India writes fashion-related blogs focusing on modest fashion. She provides readers with a wide selection of modest clothing ideas, outfit inspiration, and styling guides in order to assist them in finding the right modest style for themselves.

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