Serum, moisturizer, toner, facial oil – there are so many beneficial ingredients to incorporate into a skin care regimen, but as you look at the assortment of products in front of you, there might be one pressing question on your mind: What’s the best order for my skin care routine?
Maybe you purchased a new product and don’t know where it fits into your current routine – especially if it’s something you’ve never tried before like a facial oil or an essence. Perhaps you’re building a skin care routine from scratch and struggling to organize multiple products in a logical way. It’s time to set your apprehension aside: Here’s our comprehensive guide to ordering your skin care routine, the best way.
Layering products in the correct order determines how effectively they absorb into the skin.
Because of different purposes and formulations of products, applying ingredients in a certain order is recommended. Alicia Hawthorne, Eminence Organics Product Support Team Lead, advises: “Layering products in the correct order determines how effectively they absorb into the skin.” When investing in skin care products, you definitely want to make the most of the ingredients and not have them go to waste!
Why It Matters To Apply Skin Care Products In The Right Order
The skin’s natural response is to act as a barrier, protecting your body from the external world and only allowing a small percentage of ingredients through. When it comes to skin care, though, we want beneficial ingredients to penetrate various layers of skin. Using products in the correct order allows this penetration to occur.
Rules To Follow For Your Skin Care Steps
While it might seem complicated to figure out, layering skin care products in the right order is a lot easier than you might think, especially when you consider the different formulas in a routine. “As a general rule, the order in which you apply your skin care products should begin with the lightest to the richest consistency,” Alicia explains.
Besides the consistency rule, consider the function of each product. Certain skin care products prep the skin for a routine, helping subsequent steps absorb better and balance out the skin for a glowing, healthy complexion. You’ll want to follow with potent ingredients – like those found in serums – to penetrate the skin so they have more time to absorb and go to work repairing cells. Finish with products that seal in all those actives - after all, applying barrier products too early in the routine makes it difficult for ingredients to penetrate the skin.
How To Layer Your Skin Care Products In The Right Order
Here’s the recommended order to incorporate into your daily routine:
One of the most commonly skipped steps, toner should be featured in every skin care routine! Often packed full of antioxidants and hydration, a toner, hydrating mist or tonique follows cleansing and conditions the skin. Boldijarre Koronczay, president of Eminence Organic Skin Care, says it best. “Toners are essential to reveal fresh, revitalized looking skin all year long, set mineral makeup, balance the pH level of the skin after cleansing or to calm the skin after an invigorating workout.”
Moisten a cotton round with your favorite Eminence Organics toner and gently swipe it over the face and neck area.
Applying an essence is a must to add hydration and prepare the skin for the next steps in your routine. A lightweight formula that boosts the skin’s ability to retain moisture, an essence enhances ingredient absorption – perfect when you want to get the most benefit out of your routine.
“As a rule of thumb, apply an essence after you cleanse and tone and before your serum. I recommend using it morning and night as part of your daily skin care routine, and you could even splash it on throughout the day to freshen up,“ recommends Natalie Pergar, Eminence Organics Lead Skin Care Trainer.
After toning, shake a few drops of essence into the palms of your hands, warm the product in your hands and gently press into your skin.
3. Serum, Concentrate, Facial Oil
After prepping your skin with your toner and essence, apply potent and nutrient-dense serums or concentrates. Serums are often rich in antioxidants so it makes sense that you want them to be absorbed fully. Also, if you need to target or address specific skin concerns, applying a concentrate or serum at this point of the routine is recommended for best results.
Apply your serum or concentrate into the palms of your hands and then pat gently into your face and neck. You could also follow up with a facial oil to seal in those active ingredients and boost hydration before moving on in your skin care routine. Here’s an important tip from Boldijarre when using a facial oil: “Place three to four drops of the oil in your palm and gently rub hands together to warm the oil without ‘bruising’ it. Then, press the oil into the skin with an open palm.”
Even if your skin is oily, a hydrating moisturizer is essential to lock in moisture and protect it against the barrage of conditions it experiences day and night! Moisturizers help support the natural skin barrier and will keep your complexion strong and healthy.
For best results, you can apply your favorite moisturizer after serums or facial oil while the skin is still damp. This helps lock in moisture and those nutrient-rich ingredients you just applied to the skin.
5. Eye Cream
This delicate area is often left behind in a skin care routine – but it’s the area of your face where signs of aging show up first! Apply a hydrating eye cream over your moisturizer and pat it gently into the area around the eye socket, targeting fine lines or crow’s feet, as well as the undereye area.
6. SPF (daytime)
For a daytime skin care routine, sunscreen should be the last step (don’t forget it!). Physical and mineral sunscreens block harmful UV rays from penetrating the skin and causing age-accelerating damage. For daytime use, it’s a good idea to find a moisturizer that contains sunscreen.
7. Night Cream (evening)
If you’re not ending your day with a overnight face mask, a rich and hydrating cream is the perfect last step for a nighttime skin care routine. What’s the difference between a moisturizer and night cream? These specially-formulated products are thicker and heavier than everyday moisturizer, allowing them to really go to work sealing in serums and protecting the skin during sleeping hours to prevent moisture loss. Skin works its hardest at night while we sleep, rejuvenating and repairing cells, which is why using a night cream packed with botanical oils and extracts is highly recommended.
Watch this video to find out more from Natalie about how to layer your skin care products in the right order:
Applying products in the right skin care order is important, but knowing when to apply them is just as essential. While many like to complete their skin care routine and head straight to bed, we recommend waiting about 20 to 30 minutes. A short period before bedtime allows the products to penetrate, so you don’t end up with more night cream on your sheets than your face!
Want to build a skin care routine or need help fitting the right skin care products into your routine? Get in touch with your favorite Eminence Organics spa partner to learn more about the different types of skin care products available.