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So you just splurged at the Sephora sale, or you picked up some new products during quarantine because it was a great time to up your skincare routine. Now, you have all these things and don’t know if it’s better to use them morning or night. In what order do these all go on anyway? I’m here to help!
Layering your skincare is so important because layering them incorrectly could negatively impact certain ingredients acting with each other or cause them to not work altogether! You invested good money into your skincare – so get your money’s worth of what it’s made to do!
How to Layer
The biggest thing you’ll want to remember when layering, is thinnest to thickest. You’ll want to apply all your products in order of thinnest (think the consistency of a toner, water based) to thickest (think moisturizer). Remembering that rule will set you up for success no matter how many or few products you are using!
Deciding Morning or Night
One of the biggest things you’ll want to consider when deciding how to layer your skincare products is choosing what products to use in the morning versus at night. You’ll want to maximize what products you use at certain times of the day to make your products work better for you.
I’m the type of person who only washes my face with a cleanser once a day, I don’t think it really gets that dirty overnight so I opt to wash only at night. You might opt to wash in the morning or both! Decide what works best for you!
Deciding on what products you’re going to use twice a day or only once a day can be broken down using the above example. Everyone is going to be different depending on the skin type (and even the day!) Don’t feel like your routine has to be so set in stone that you can’t break the rules and use a product twice a day every once in a while if your skin needs it! Listen to your skin, it always knows you best.
A few things that I’ve noticed that really help me is breaking up my serums into morning and night. I like to use my vitamin C serum in the morning because I love the citrusy smell of it and it wakes me up!
At night, I opt to use my AHA/BHA serum (I alternate between these three here, here, and here) because I like to really let that soak in overnight! Some people opt to use an AHA in the morning so decide what works best for you! You might switch the order of the vitamin C and the AHA.
I really like to use these two products at different times of the day, but if you prefer to use them both at once, that’s ok too! I would use the AHA first followed by the vitamin C if you decide to use them at the same time to make sure that AHA is penetrating the deepest.
Using Products in Order
I am going to show you an example of how your skincare routine might look! This is an extreme example and if your skincare routine has less (or more!) of these steps that are completely fine and normal. Do what works for you!! This order is merely a suggestion by following the thinnest to thickest model.
I like to start my morning off by using this toner to get any leftover oils off my face from the night before and basically give my skin a “clean surface” to work with my morning products.
I am a newer fan to eye cream only because this one is my holy grail! It is the first eye cream I’ve used that I can physically see a difference in. Putting your eye cream on early in your routine protects your eyes from the other products you are layering on top. I’ll follow up my eye cream (once it dries) with the Tula Glow and Get It eye stick. I love this in the mornings it really wakes me up!
There are many benefits to using a vitamin C serum. It can help with skin pigmentation and the appearance of fine lines. I like to use my vitamin C serum at this point in my routine and try to walk away and let this soak in for a second. Usually I’ll make my bed or pick out an outfit just something to give that vitamin C time to dry! I swear by my vitamin C serum because I love the fresh scent some vitamin C serums can smell so gross.
A hydration serum is a great morning serum because it can act as a moisturizer. After my vitamin C is on, depending on the day, I’ll use a hydration serum if my skin is looking dull and dry. This one is my favorite because it is super lightweight and has vitamin B5 in it which helps lock in moisture increasing skin hydration.
Morning Acne Treatment
If my face is breaking out, I’ll add a morning spot treatment on it to fight that acne during the day! If you have a prescription acne treatment with use twice a day, now would be a good time to apply!
I do not use moisturizer on my face twice a day often. Sometimes I will skip the moisturizer and opt for my hydration serum and a daytime oil instead. I find my face can sometimes breakout more frequently if I overdo it on the moisturizer but there are definitely days my skin needs the extra moisturizer!
A daytime oil is a great addition to a skincare routine for an extra glow and hydration. This is my new favorite step to my morning routine because I love the glow it gives your skin! I have been using this one for a few months now and love how lightweight it is for the daytime and not as thick as a nighttime oil would be.
An absolute must to any morning skincare routine! It is so important to be wearing sunscreen daily even if indoors for sun protection! The sun can damage your skin without getting a sunburn! You should be wearing sunscreen everyday, all day. I have been absolutely loving this one by Supergoop and have also been trying this one the past few days as well.
After you have done the above, you can start on your makeup as usual!
It is so important to wash your face! Removing your makeup is sooo important needs to be done daily! A daily cleanser is a great start to any skincare routine. Nighttime is when I love to cleanse my face. I use this brush to apply my cleanser. When my face is breaking out, I use this cleanser. When my face is normal, I’ll use this one (affordable cleanser here). Once a week, I’ll use a deep exfoliating cleanser.
A toner is really important because it helps clean the skin and pick up anything the cleanser didn’t get while also minimizing your pore size. Think of this step as creating a smooth canvas for everything else you’re about to apply. I have been using this toner for a few months and I love it. It is great for dry skin and not super drying. I also love how affordable it is ($9 sign me up!) I’ve had mine since February and use it daily and I’m barely halfway through it.
I am a newer fan to eye cream only because this one is my holy grail! It is the first eye cream I’ve used that I can physically see a difference in. Putting your eye cream on early in your routine protects your eyes from the other products you are layering on top.
This is when I typically like to apply my AHA/BHA serum. (I alternate between these three here, here, and here) AHA’s are a great addition to your skincare routine because they work on the skin’s surface to get rid of dead skin cells. AHA’s are great for dry skin and can help with acne. BHA’s penetrate into your pores to get rid of bacteria and prevent blackheads. Both are great and that’s why I rotate three products to get both the benefits. Some serums contain both! If you are looking for an AHA/BHA serum to use nightly, try this one. I promise it’s worth the price but you can try it here as a sample with the oil I also love to use!
If you have any prescription acne treatments or want to use any sort of acne treatment use it here! You can also use a retinol at this step once you have gotten your serums on! There are so many benefits to using a retinol that I get into in this blog post here.
A nightly moisturizer is an absolute must even if you have oily skin! There are so many moisturizers out there be sure to do your research to find the one best for you! If you skip the morning moisturizer (like me sometimes!) be sure to apply at night. Giving your skin hydration is the best way to prevent aging, be sure to apply all the way down your neck and on the backs of your hands! I alternate between this one if my skin is dry and this one a lighter one, depending on how dry my skin is!
I love a good nighttime oil. I think they are just the perfect finish to a skincare routine and help really lock in everything you just put on your face! An oil can be super hydrating and I think the secret to an overall glow. This one is my absolute favorite and so worth the price! I am also currently trying this one!
Can’t forget about the lips! Always the best way to finish out hydration. My favorite one here.
No matter how many or how few steps your skincare routine has, you are doing great! I don’t ever want anyone to feel like they aren’t doing enough for their skin! Something is always better than nothing (except when it comes to sunscreen…always do that).