Skincare took on a heightened importance for many over the last year. With more time to contemplate such things and pesky masks to contend with, those who may have previously gotten by with washing their faces every once in a while are now considering the value of a proper skincare regimen.
When it comes to establishing an effective skincare routine, most beauty magazines and websites tend to focus their guidance on the products when in fact the order in which those products are applied is just as important as the products themselves, if not even a little more important.
Layering products without giving much thought to their order can impede penetration and inactivate their ingredients. In other words, for all that you might be investing in high-quality skincare products, you may be undermining their ability to do what they’re supposed to be doing.
There are a few basic rules to abide by when planning your skincare regimen. I’ll discuss them here. And in my next post, I’ll offer step-by-step outlines of what your morning and nighttime skincare routines should look like.
For starters, topical medications always take priority. If you’ve been prescribed one, apply it first because it needs to go directly onto clean skin.
Beyond that, approach your skincare routine kind of like you’d get dressed, applying the lightest products first and then layering on the thicker ones. It makes no sense to wear a tank top over your parka, right? The skincare equivalent would be applying eye cream on top of moisturizer.
It may sound harmless until you consider what you’re spending on eye cream.
It’s rare that any of us has a wealth of time early in the morning or late at night, even without a commute or the usual onslaught of extracurricular activities to worry about. Still, if you can carve out a little more time for your skincare regimen, you’re likely to see an appreciable improvement in your appearance. That’s because skincare products are generally their most effective when they have a few minutes to be absorbed by your skin.
So, when you’re layering them on, try to wait five minutes before applying the next one. If that’s asking too much, do the best that you can – with the understanding that every second counts.
Finally, and this may help with the above, less is more. Rather than applying a bunch of different products, each with a different active ingredient, try to use one or two superstar products that combine multiple ingredients. That way, you’ll get the best possible results while posing the least risk of irritating your skin.