How to Layer Your Skincare Products Like A Pro

How to Layer Your Skincare Products

No matter how amazing the skincare products are, if you apply the skin care products in the wrong order, you could be wasting your time and money without getting the results you want.

3 Reasons Why The Order of Skincare Products Matter

  1. Prevent Penetration

It is important to work from the lightest to the heaviest substances. If you apply a thicker and richer formula first, it could prevent thinner ones from penetrating your skin properly.

  1. Less Effective

If you don’t follow the correct order to apply your skincare products and all the good ingredient don’t get to penetrate your skin properly, you obviously won’t get the full benefits. Also, if you combine skincare ingredients that are meant to be applied away from each other, you can deactivate them or even create new unwanted skin irritations.

  1. Could Harm Your Skin

If you use the products out of order, it can create new skin issues. For example, applying serums on top of oils could leave your skin dry and dehydrated, since not enough hydration is reaching your skin. Also, if you layer serums, creams, and oils on top of your sunscreen, it prevents other ingredients from penetrating and diluting the sun protection. This could lead to premature aging or worse.

The 4 Rules of Product Layering

  1. Thinnest To Thickest Texture

Start by putting the thinnest, fastest-absorbing product on your face first such as toners, serums, essences, and layer the next heaviest over it like lotions, creams, and oils, so that the thickest formula ends up on top. Sunscreen always goes last, and the only thing that you should layer on top is the foundation, concealer, or powder.

  1. Water-Based Before Oil-Based

Since oil and water don’t mix, oil can block water from penetrating the skin. This means you must apply water-based products first and let them absorb into your skin then apply oil-based products on top.

  1. Lowest To Highest pH

If you’re using active ingredients, go from lowest to highest pH levels. Acidic products (pH 3.0 to 4.0) should always come first before more neutral ones (pH 5.0 to 7.0).

  1. Take Your Time

Take some time between your applications to allow each product to settle into your skin. If you apply everything all on in seconds, you run the risk of piling. You can increase penetration by letting each step absorb for a minute before moving on to the next.

Recommended Order of Skincare Products


  1.   Cleanser
  2.   Toner
  3.   Serum
  4.   Eye Cream
  5.   Spot Treatments
  6.   Moisturizer
  7.   Face Oil
  8.   Sunscreen
  9.   Makeup


  1.   Makeup Remover
  2.   Cleanser
  3.   Exfoliator * One to two times per week
  4.   Toner
  5.   Serum
  6.   Eye Cream
  7.   Spot Treatments
  8.   Moisturizer
  9.   Face Oil