Skincare layering is nothing short of confusing. Skinfluencers, dermatologists and your facialist all have a different opinion. The Internet and social media are swamped with myths and misconceptions when it comes to pairing ingredients, but the good news is you don’t have to shrug on a lab coat and sit in on a chemistry lesson to slather on your skincare.
Although it doesn’t hurt to get clued up on your mainstay ingredients, knowing the difference between your Vitamin C from your A, and your AHAs for your BHAs can’t hurt.
To simplify the subject, we like to look at it from a texture perspective. As a rule of thumb, layer your skincare from thinnest to thickest. Which usually means starting with water based formulations, then silicones, then oils. This ensures the molecular structure is spot on and each product can be fully absorbed into the skin. Start with cleansing, then chemical exfoliants or toners, then layer your serums and work your way to moisturisers and oils.
Another golden skincare rule to live by is waiting. Just wait a minute or two between each step to let it soak and penetrate your skin. This way you’re ensuring no chemical reactions and preventing different layers from cancelling each other out.
Layering skincare ingredients correctly can help tackle multiple skin concerns more effectively, counteract the unwanted side effects of actives and even help some ingredients work synergistically to enhance their effectiveness.
When applying Dr Naomi’s Correcting Serums: In the morning after cleansing apply Let it B, Care Factor or Smooth Criminal before Let’s C. In the evening after cleansing and toning/exfoliating with Pore Relation Power Essence, apply Vitamin Amen last.
A hot tip: we suggest applying Catfish in the morning over your serums, to help minimise and blur fine lines and wrinkles instantly. Followed by moisturiser, then Super Oil to nourish and lock in and prevent water loss. In every AM routine, no matter what your product or brand, sunscreen is always applied last.
While we’re here, what about a note on moisturiser vs oil? Dry skin and dehydrated skin are two different things. Dry skin is a skin type, dehydrated skin is a skin condition. Dry skin doesn’t produce enough oil, where dehydrated skin lacks water and is usually caused by external factors like air conditioning and over-exfoliating. To treat it: dry skin wants oil, dehydrated skin wants water. But a combination of both will work best, so layer your water-based serum under your moisturiser and then your oil. Dewy dumpling!
The bottom line is, don’t get too caught up in ingredient pairings, instead stick to how you’re applying each product – and bookmark this page so you don’t forget.