Here's the correct order to apply skin care products

October 28, 2019

Correct order to apply skin care products

How to layer products for skincare

Whether you use two or twelve skincare products on your face, the most effective way to scale this mountain that is your skincare routine is by doing it step-by-step in proper order. Otherwise, you’ll end up just wasting your product because it isn’t penetrating through the skin as it should.

So how do you know which skincare products go first until the last?

The general idea in layering your products for skincare is that you must start with thinner more liquid ones followed by thicker and creamier products. This makes sure all of these get absorbed by the skin and nothing will go to waste.

Sounds easy, right? But if you’re still worried that you may be layering them wrong, worry no more because here is the correct order to make sure you have a seamless routine skin care.




The first step in your skincare journey starts by using a gentle daily cleanser that will remove as much dirt and excess oil from your face without stripping your skin of its natural moisture. Our Honey and Oats Cleanser is a crowd favorite because it purifies the skin without leaving it parched for moisture.

Viva Glow Natural and Organic Face Cleansers

Use warm water to help unclog and slough off the impurities. Use a pea sized amount and massage your skin in a gentle circular motion. Rinse thoroughly with cool water making sure no product is left. Pat dry with a clean towel making sure not to tug your skin.


While your skin is damp is the best time to apply some toner. Toners come in different formulas and gives a wide array of value-added benefits apart from hydration. But basically, what toners do is prep the skin so that the next products can be absorbed more easily and effectively through the skin.

Depending on the instructions, you can use a cotton pad (or cotton ball) and wipe all over your face or spritz it and gently pat on using clean fingers. Don’t forget your neck, too! Wait for a minute or two or until all the toner has been soaked up by your skin.


If you use a face serum, now is the time to put it on. Serums are super charged with nourishing ingredients and it’s best used under your moisturizer. It’s consistency is a bit thicker than a toner.

Viva Glow Organic Face Serums

Serums are great sources of potent anti-aging benefits like our Peptide Complex Serum.If you need some hydration, our bestselling Intensive Renewal Serum quenches thirsty skin and even helps boost cellular regeneration.

Just use a few drops on your face and neck and wait a few minutes depending on the instructions on the bottle.

Eye Cream

When is the right age to use an eye cream, you ask? Experts from C.O. Bigelow suggests starting as early as your early 20’s to prevent early signs of aging around the eye area. 

“As we get older and wiser, skin in general starts weakening in structure.”Their experts say. This is because as we age, the amount of collagen, which is responsible for keeping our skin plump, is produced less and less thereby causing wrinkles and fine lines especially in this area.

A small amount is all you need. Gently massage around your delicate eye area. Use an eye cream with SPF to protect your skin from the sun’s rays and a hat or sunglasses for an extra barrier against UV radiation.

Spot Treatment

It’s a bit tricky to say exactly when spot treatment products should be used as they react differently based on their active ingredients and what they address.

The rule of thumb is to keep these products as close to the skin as possible, but always check the products you use for spot treatment before putting it on to make sure you’re getting the benefits they offer.

There are some ingredients that may counteract or cancel each other out, so be sure to check with your dermatologist how you should apply these products.


We’re almost done!

Regardless of your skin type, a great moisturizer does wonders in making sure you have a solid skincare routine. The main job of moisturizers is to make sure your skin stays hydrated by sealing it all into the skin. 

Related post: Hydrating and Moisturizing: Is there really a difference?

For dry or mature skin, a cream moisturizer like the Antioxidant Moisturizer will not only keep your skin moist but will also inject your skin with replenishing and anti-aging nutrients that brightens and fights skin aging.

Even oily skin needs some moisturizer, too. Gel-type moisturizers or those with a thinner, non-greasy consistency will help balance hydration and minimize oil overproduction.

Our PH Balance Moisturizer is a match for those with oily, combination, and acne-prone skin as it will not clog pores and also helps minimize blemishes.

Use a hypoallergenic moisturizer if you have sensitive skin.“In general, choose one that contains less than 10 ingredients,”says California dermatologist Sonia Badreshia-Bansal, MD.


Don’t leave home without putting on sunscreen. Whether it’s a regular or tinted sunscreen is up to you, but try to use one that’s non-comedogenic and if possible, made with safe but effective ingredients like zinc.

Correct order skincare 01

Look for SPF30 for optimum protection against the sun’s rays. Use this list from Good Housekeeping if you’re looking for great chemical-free sunscreens.



Makeup Remover

Never sleep with your makeup on. At the end of the day, your face is filled with grime and oil buildup, so it’s only proper to take all that away. 

Micellar water is ideal if you have oily, combination, or acne prone skin as it removes makeup effectively without clogging skin.

Alternatively, a cleansing balm or cleansing oil melts away all the product and excess oil. Use a soft and damp cotton cloth to wipe your face clean instead of makeup wipes to reduce waste to remove as much of it as you can.


Use your gentle cleanser as you would in your morning routine. This second step of cleansing will ensure anything that may have been left by the micellar water or balm or cleansing oil is removed and your pores are unclogged.


There are some toners or boosters that you may need to apply at night to aid in skin as it repairs itself. It can be in the form of ampoules, mists, essences, or serums. 

Vitamin C Toner and Rosewater Toner

If you’re using any of these products, be sure to apply them from thinnest to thickest as well and allow some time in between applications for each of them to get absorbed. The wait time may vary between these products so check the label beforehand. 

Also, don’t forget to also make sure that the products you are layering together will not cancel out or counteract with each other.

Eye Cream

This next step adds some protection to your delicate eye area before putting on your spot treatment medications or creams. Again, a little goes a long way. Massage all around the eye area.

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Spot Treatments, Serums, Creams, or Pads

As mentioned earlier, some spot treatments, medications, or anti-aging creams work best as the skin is resting because this is the time when it repairs itself, and they supplement in its regeneration.

Be careful when mixing one skincare product with another, though. There are ingredients, acids and retinols for instance, that are better when used together while some are better off used in separately as their chemical reactions may cause irritation.

Always check the ingredients and consult your dermatologist to help you create an effective routine.

Facial Oil

Are facial oils supposed to be used before or after moisturizer? While this is not really a very controversial topic, we’ll leave the decision up to you. Or rather, to the consistency of your facial oil versus your moisturizer (remember the general rule?).

Stylecaster advised that for those with dry skin, it would be better to apply your facial oil AFTER the moisturizer while other skin types who have a good amount of natural oil on their skin apply it BEFORE the moisturizer.

Moisturizer or Night Cream

And at last it’s time to seal in all that hydration and nutrients in by using your favorite moisturizer or night cream. Dry and sensitive skin types may benefit more to use a heavier or thicker cream or moisturizer for their nighttime skincare where hydration on the skin is at its lowest. 

But that doesn’t mean to say your day moisturizer won’t be as effective either. If you have oily, combo, or acne-prone skin, then it may be best to just stick with one type of moisturizer for both day and night.



Exfoliation is a deep cleansing method of unclogging pores and removing dead skin cells and other impurities to help improve blood circulation and make skin cells regenerate faster, causing it to become brighter and giving you the appearance of a young and healthy skin.

Choose the right method according to your skin type. Exfoliate your skin at least once a week if you have dry or sensitive skin using a mild chemical exfoliator. 

Salicylic acid helps exfoliate and remove blemishes on acne-prone skin.

Viva Glow Organic and Natural Face Masks

A scrub, brush, or washcloth or any other types of exfoliation is good for those will oily skin. It helps remove that extra layer of oil or dead skin that may have been left by cleansers.

Rub your skin in gentle circular motion to help with blood circulation. This can be done up to three times a week.

Those with normal or combination skin may benefit from either chemical or mechanical exfoliation. Just make sure to use them separately. Exfoliate once or twice a week for best results.

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What products you use or how many depends on your skin type and whatever skin issues you may want to address. 

There are non-negotiables, of course, regardless of skin type, which are cleansers, toners, and moisturizers. There are some who need to have spot treatments for acne while some target wrinkles and fine lines. 

Some can just wash with warm water in the morning, while others need to use cleanser day and night. Sometimes, less is more, sometimes more is better. It all depends on how your skin reacts to your skincare.

You can use this as a comprehensive step-by-step guide if you’re that one girl who just can’t get enough of her ampoules and masks.

But if you’re one simpleton who wants to keep it simple, then just skip the products you’re not using and move on to the next step.

A solid understanding of layering your products is one of the skills you need to create a solid skin care routine. And whatever products for skin care you may decide to use, just be sure to follow these steps and you’re off to having your best skin yet!

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