Believe it or not, you can apply skincare in the wrong order. Many people are unaware that the order in which products are applied can significantly affect efficacy or chances of irritation. You can also deactivate ingredients or cause irritation by applying the wrong products together. After all, skincare is just chemistry and when you mix the wrong elements in chemistry it can be a disaster. (See our guide to which ingredients you should NEVER mix here.)
The order in which you apply skincare may seem like a trivial issue until your eyes are red and on fire because you applied an AHA serum prior to putting on eye cream. Many times you’ll see recommendations to apply eye cream toward the middle or end of your routine, but it should be applied first following your cleansing products.
Why? Because if you apply eye cream after toners, serums etc., your fingers will have other products on them, which could sting your eyes and cause irritation. So, always apply your eye cream first thing after cleansing (unless you’re doing a wash-off mask, of course.)
Another mistake people often make is applying SPF or facial oils prior to water-based products. SPF and other oil-based products seal the skin and act as repellents for any water-based products. So, if you apply SPF or other occlusive products anything else you put on top is a waste as it will not penetrate the skin, leaving you with a greasy layer.
Want to know more? Check out and save the infographic below for the full correct order to apply your skincare.