Here’s the Correct Order To Apply Your Skincare Products

Here’s the Correct Order To Apply Your Skincare Products

Published by Jil Goorman on Jul 10th 2023

Almost everyone wants beautiful skin, but achieving this goal is not always as easy as it seems. Getting clear, glowing skin doesn’t happen overnight; in fact, you need to establish a regular, personalized skincare routine to maintain your skin. Knowing the correct order to apply your skincare products can help you determine what’s best for your unique skin, whether you have an existing regimen or you want to try something new. Follow along to discover everything you need to know about which skincare products to apply and when.

Why Does the Order Matter?

You might not think the order matters when it comes to applying your skincare products, but it does if you want to reap the full benefits of each product. Interestingly, your skin’s job is to keep things out of your body; however, skincare products contain ingredients that you want your skin to absorb. That said, you most likely won’t see optimum results from your skincare routine if you don’t apply your products in the correct order.

In addition, you don’t need an abundance of different products to achieve beautiful skin—sticking to the basics and doing them well is sufficient in many cases. Simply focus on giving your skin what it needs and applying your products from lightest to heaviest. Many focus on what they’re putting on their faces rather than the order, but the order is equally important. Follow along to learn more about the perfect order for your daytime and nighttime skincare routines.

The Ideal Daytime Routine

It’s a new day, and you should greet it with a clean, happy face. That said, starting your day with skincare is one of the best ways to improve your skin’s appearance and ensure smooth makeup application if you’ll be wearing any. Explore the ideal morning skincare routine below for inspiration.


In the morning, you should start your day by using a gentle cleanser and water on your face. Doing so will allow you to wash away any dead skin cells and oil that built up on your skin overnight. Be sure to choose a cleanser that’s suitable for your unique skin type, whether it be for dry, oily, sensitive, or combination skin. After cleaning and rinsing your face thoroughly, pat it dry with a clean, soft towel.


Toners are an optional step in your daytime skincare routine, as many choose to skip it. While there’s nothing wrong with not using one, they can help restore your skin’s pH level after cleansing and provide an instant refreshing sensation. Although you might think toners are drying and astringent, many options contain nourishing and hydrating ingredients to prepare your skin for the rest of your products. In fact, the best toners act as a delivery system for your serums and treatments.

Vitamin C Serum

It’s no secret that eating fruit is great for your overall physical health, but you might not know that vitamin C is incredible for your skin. With that in mind, you should consider using a vitamin C serum in your daily routine to prevent premature aging and improve the appearance of wrinkles, acne, and dark spots. If you have sensitive skin, you should start using vitamin C serum gradually—start with every other day and then move to daily use if your skin can tolerate it.

Acne Spot Treatment

Using an acne spot treatment is another optional step in your routine, as you don’t need to apply it if you don’t have acne. Because acne treatments need to be as close to your skin as possible, you must apply them before your creams to allow them to work properly. Many acne treatments, like salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide, can cause dryness or irritation—be sure to use it only where you need it.

Eye Cream

Eye cream is crucial to any skincare routine, as the skin around your eyes is incredibly thin and fragile. Unfortunately, most people start developing fine lines and wrinkles around their eyes first because the skin starts to lose elasticity the fastest. However, you can slow this process by applying eye cream twice daily starting in your 20s.


Moisturizer is arguably the most important part of any skincare routine, regardless of your skin type or concerns. Even if you have oily skin, you still need a moisturizer; that said, you should find one suitable for your skin type. After applying your serums and treatments, you should apply your moisturizer to lock in the products and deliver the necessary hydration to your skin.


Sunscreen is one of the most necessary steps in your routine, and it should come last if you’re using a physical or mineral sunscreen, like zinc. Because these options actually block UV rays physically, they should be on the outermost layer of your skin.

The Ideal Nighttime Routine

Now that you know how to start your day, you should also know how to wash the day away. Even though you might want to crawl into bed rather than take care of your skin, you should avoid skipping your nighttime routine; after all, your skin heals as you sleep. Dive into an ideal nighttime skincare regimen to create one that works for you.

Double Cleanse

Double cleansing might not seem necessary, but using an oil-based cleanser first to remove your makeup is always a great idea. After your makeup is off, you should follow it with your usual gentle cleanser as an extra line of defense. After, rinse thoroughly and pat dry with a clean, soft towel.


As previously mentioned, toner is an optional step. If you choose to use it, you can apply it in the morning and evening after cleansing your skin.

Skin Treatments

If you use any serums or acne treatments, this is a good time to apply them. That said, be sure to apply them thinnest to thickest if you have more than one, and allow time between for your skin to absorb them.

Eye Cream

Eye cream is also necessary in the evening, as it can help with wrinkles and dark circles while you sleep. You can apply it more generously at night to provide adequate hydration and nourishment throughout the night.

Moisturizer or Night Cream

Lastly, you should apply a hydration source. It should be enough to support your skin throughout the night, whether you use the same moisturizer as you do in the morning or a night cream. Night creams are typically thicker and heavier, as they take a few hours to fully absorb. Using a night cream is a great option if you struggle with dry skin.

Now that you know the correct order to apply your skincare products, you’ll most likely see the best results from your skincare for acne. Even though the products you use are important, deciding when to use them and in what order is crucial to getting the full benefits from your skincare routine.

Here’s the Correct Order To Apply Your Skincare Products