Why The Order Of Your Skincare Routine Matters

Woman taking a face mask off.

Skincare routine order isn’t exactly easy; it’s a game-changer! If you’re a skincare lover (just like me), then the chances are that you’re constantly bombarded with new skincare products. “This anti-aging serum will make you look ten years younger!” Try this new toner” “Is your skincare routine at least twelve steps?” “Add these essential oils to your basic skincare routine”

As time goes on, you begin to accumulate products, and you’re smart enough to know the function of each product and understand the basics of skincare. But applying them in a systematic, logical order is a kind of a guessing game – one that’s often filled with too much misinformation. According to Dr. Alicia Zalka, an East Coast-based dermatologist,” the order in which you apply skincare products to your skin is critical” So, if you’ve been dealing with seemingly ineffective formulas and irritation or you’re simply hoping for the best result while slathering on products, ensure that you’re not following any of these myths by accident.

1.       MYTH: You Need A 10-Step Skin Care Routine

No, you don’t need a 10- step or 12-step skin care routine. All you need is sunscreen, a moisturizer, and a gentle cleanser. In fact, the longer your skin care routine order, the higher the possibility of getting your skin irritated. According to Dr. Mona Gohara, a board-certified dermatologist, “many of my patients come in with an acne-eczema hybrid known as perioral dermatitis” The reason?”Using a lot of new skincare products all at once, which could lead to an inflammatory response in the skin.” So, keep your skin care routine order simple and, preferably, derm-approved.

2.       MYTH: You Should Use Retinol On Clean, Dry Skin

Of course, you can. But if you want to reduce the irritation and tightness that usually accompany a retinoid skin care routine, then you should apply it 20 minutes after layering on your moisturizer. Dr. Gohara says that “the cream will act as a buffer that also dilutes the retinoid potency, so your skin can tolerate it better.”

3.       MYTH: To Start, Your Skin Does Not Have To Be Clean

The number 1 mistake in a skin care routine order is literally not cleansing properly. Before you use any other skincare products, you need to wash your face first. In the summer and spring, rid your pores of oil and dirt with a light cleanser like a micellar water cleanser or gel.

Splashing water on your face before you layer on your products is not enough.”There are natural oils on your skin that have to be removed with a face wash and/or an oil cleanser” Dr. Gohara says (two picks: HoliFrog Superior Omega Nutritive Gel Wash and DHC Deep Cleansing Oil).

Remember that for your skincare products to really penetrate your skin, you need to get rid of the grime and oil on your skin –  and that applies to makeup wipes too, which tend to leave an oily residue behind.

4.       MYTH: You Should Apply Spot Treatments First

The moment you add another product to your face, the spot treatment will slip and slide around your face, leaving your pimple bare while potentially irritating the rest of your skin. Instead, use a damp cotton swab to gently wipe off your zits after finishing your skin care routine, then use a clean finger to apply your spot treatment.

5.       MYTH: Face Oils And Moisturizers Are Interchangeable.

If you think that face oils are just extra-hydrating moisturizers, then you’re not alone. Actually, it’s best to use oils on top of face cream –instead of using it interchangeably- to improve its moisturizing effects. According to Dr. Gohara, “oils are occlusive, which means that they trap in hydration, instead of adding a lot of hydration to your skin.” “Ideally, oils should go last in your skincare routine order to seal in the moisture below the” unless your preferred face oil specifies otherwise.

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