Order of Skincare Product Application

Before I go to discuss the order of skincare product application, I wanted to cover how I classify skincare products and give you brief intro to each product category.

I have previously spoken about the fact that some skincare products are meant to be selected based on your skin type whereas others are meant to be selected based on your skin conditions. If you would like to know more details, please follow the link: Skin – type and Skin – condition Skincare

If it is all fresh in your mind, here is how I classify skincare product:

  1. Skin – type Skincare

Face Wash

It is critical and absolutely essential for your skin to be properly cleansed. If you do not do your due diligence in cleansing the skin, all the “dirt” will be sealed and reabsorbed back into your skin and bloodstream together with the active products and creams that you apply to your skin after cleansing.

Please note that it is essential to cleanse your face twice a day. In the evening, we remove make up, dust and whatever products we applied in the morning to protect our skin.  In the morning, we should cleanse our face to gently remove elements adsorbed during the course of skin regeneration at night.

I would give preference to face wash / cleansers that do not lather as much. Having a lot of bubbles in the face wash is a sign of soap / detergent- like ingredients in the product which damage the lipid barrier.



Toner will restore pH balance of the skin and prep the face for the treatment products.

You could easily make your own toner using water and natural oils. You could also use thermal water as a toner. However, please remember that thermal water should not be applied as a stand-alone product as it might dehydrate your skin. Once you apply thermal water you should follow up with a sealing agent: cream / oil or sunscreen.


Face cream

I have mentioned in the previous posts that our skin functions differently during the day and night. During the night, our skin restores and replenishes its resourcefulness. The skin uses its own resources as we carry out our business during the day. Given the major difference in functioning of the skin during the day and night, there are substantial differences in terms of what our skin needs during each part of the day:

– Day Cream – hydration / moisturiser

I am told that day creams usually contain SPF 8 in them already even though it is not always indicated on the label.

– Night cream – restoration / nutrition replenishment

To give your products time to do the work, please complete your skincare routine 1.5 – 2 hours before you go to sleep.



Photodamage is the second biggest contributor to skin maturity after the chronological ageing itself. Daytime by definition assumes presence of the sun which means that sunscreen should be an essential part of your daily skincare routine.

There are two types of sunscreens out there:

– Chemical ones which are absorbed into the blood stream. They absorb UV rays and convert them to heat that is released through skin. Chemical sunscreens might affect hormone levels and stay in blood stream till five days after the application.

– Mineral ones act like a physical barrier that sits on top of the skin. Mineral sunscreens reflect away the sunlight. However, the size and effect of particles (or nano0particles) is the one to consider


2.      Skin – condition Skincare

Eye cream

First signs of ageing usually appear around the eyes. The skin is very thin so wrinkles only deepen once they start. You are lucky if you find eye cream that is actually able to address conditions it is meant address.



There are numerous types of serums available on the market today. If you are addressing few skin conditions by means of serum at the same time then it is suggested to separate serums by time of the day (day / night) or by area of application. For example, if you have some areas of your skin that are dry and others are acne prone then use serums based on the needs of each particular area of the face. If you are addressing dehydration and antioxidant replenishment then you could separate your serum by day and night.

Please remember that vitamin C and any acid- based products must be applied only at night. Using such products during the day will increase chance of skin pigmentation.



It is best to avoid physical scrubs and use enzyme or acid peels instead. Peeling is a deep penetrating cleansing of the skin so it must be done once a week. Also to avoid skin pigmentation make sure to do peels only in the evening.



After the age of thirty it is suggested to do masks every other day. If you are pressed for time then make sure to do mask at least once a week.


Facial product application etiquette


Type of skin care


When to apply

How  often

Makeup remover


Skin type

Morning / Evening



Skin condition


Once a week


Skin condition

Once a week min

Treatment products

Skin condition

-Acne spot treatment

– Vitamin C serum

-Lean-on hydroxyl acids (any acid based product)

-Retinols / retinoids

– Antioxidant serums




Skin condition

Hydrating serums and mists (If using both, use mist before serum)



Chemical sunscreen

Skin type



Eye cream

Skin condition

Morning / Evening


Day cream

Skin type



Night cream / Face oil

Skin type

Face oil forms barrier on the skin : no other products will be able to penetrate the skin after face oil is applied



Mineral sunscreen

Skin type



There is a whole series of blog posts dedicated to each product category so please refer to the following link for more details: FaceBook: Skin Care Manual I (Cosmetic Skincare)

Thanks for reading,

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