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How to skincare layer like a pro

Is there any better feeling than starting a new skincare brand or a bunch of new products on the pursuit for your best skin?! You pick out all these amazing new products, unbox them excitedly and jump headfirst into applying them and soaking in all the goodness. If only it were so easy! Well, it kind of is, turns out you just need to layer your skincare products in the right way. Cue: Skincare layering. Not only will skincare layering help you to achieve your skincare goals (after all, that’s what we’re here for), but it will also save you time, effort and your hard-earned money.

We’ve pulled together our essential tips to heighten your skincare routine.

First things first, consistency is key

Hearing the words ‘consistency is key’ is almost triggering, we know. All our life we’ve been reminded (or nagged) that if we stick to something consistently, we’ll see the results. This holds true when exercising, eating well… and it most certainly holds true when it comes to achieving your skincare goals - because we can’t expect to see proper results when we use a product every so often. Take retinol, for example. A retinol treatment can take up to three months for you to start seeing the benefits once you’ve built up your tolerance to apply it every second night or even nightly. The key here is the consistency of use to gain those benefits after three months because if you use it sparingly or every so often, you’re going to feel let down when you’re not seeing results.

With everything from collagen serums, retinols, treatments and even the basics (cleansers, exfoliators and toners) – form a routine and stick to it for your best results.

Layer based on product consistency (thinnest to thickest substance)

Layering skincare in the right order is essential for product absorption and ensuring that the product can work effectively.

When it comes to layering efficiently, a good rule of thumb to follow is layering based on a products’ consistency – meaning layer from your thinnest (watery) substance to your thickest substance. Applying your thinnest substance first increases product absorption into your skin (after all, that’s what we want!) because if you applied your thickest substance first (think oil) then this could actually prevent your thinner products from penetrating into your skin and therefore inhibiting their performance.

In practice your best routine would be: cleanser, exfoliator, mask (to best prepare your base to absorb your following products) toner, treatment (light serums), moisturiser, treatment (thick treatments) and facial oil.

The finale

Facial oil, should this be your thing, should always go last and that is because oil is an occlusive which means it creates a barrier. Oil has the ability to penetrate through serums, lotions and moisturisers but it cannot work the other way around (a thinner serum, lotion and moisturiser substance cannot penetrate through oil). So, we always apply this last!


Enjoy the self-care experience - pause then spritz between each step

Take a leaf out of the slow beauty book and truly enjoy the self-care experience – it’s one moment within your busy day that’s yours to relish (in fact that’s one of the reasons our skincare is aromatic, to heighten your sensory experience!).

But if you have a million things to do and slow beauty doesn’t convince you, this will. There’s this thing called pilling and it happens when you pile on products too quickly, before each individual product has had a chance to absorb properly into your skin. This causes the products to practically band together, dry up and roll from your face as opposed to absorbing into it. The great news is that this is completely avoidable by slowing down your routine and giving each product sufficient time to completely absorb before spritzing moisture and applying the next product. We recommend at least 60 seconds.

'Spritzing moisture' - you ask? We're glad you brought this up. Did you know that by applying a product to a moistened surface, this helps to both seal moisture into the skin and help the product to work more effectively? It's true! You can achieve this by spritzing the likes of Harmony (or another source of hydration) in between your skincare layering steps. E.g. allow a product to dry (for 60 seconds), then spritz and immediately apply the next product in your routine. And so on and so forth.

Our recommended RAWKANVAS routine

  1. Cleanser
  2. Exfoliator
  3. Mask
  4. Toner
  5. Serum
  6. Eye treatment
  7. Moisturiser
  8. Facial treatment
  9. Facial oil
  10. Lip care

Follow our suggested RAWKANVAS routine.

Now this all might sound like a lot but if there’s one thing we want you to take away from all of this – it’s that it’s not just about what skincare you’re applying, but how you’re applying it. By applying your products consistently, in the right order and slowly, you will maximise the benefits of your skincare products and be on your way to achieving your skincare goals.