Askanesthetician's Blog

An esthetician explores skincare issues and concerns

Damp Skin + Your Skincare Products = Happy Skin September 6, 2011

Filed under: Skin and Skincare — askanesthetician @ 5:54 am
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If you want your skincare products to penetrate and work up to their promised potential try one small trick: apply them to damp skin.  There is a difference, of course, between damp skin and wet skin.  If you apply skincare products to wet skin they will simply slide off, but damp skin, according to Allure, “acts like a sponge, quickly absorbing whatever comes its way.”

According to David Bank, assistant clinical professor of dermatology at Columbia University/New York-Presbyterian Hospital, “when the skin is hydrated and plumped up – after cleansing or a warm shower – ingredients penetrate more easily into and between cells, which is especially important when you’re using products that need to work their way down into the slightly deeper layers of skin to do things like stimulate collagen.  Any water molecules lurking about will act like lubricants.”

So the next time after you shower or wash your face be sure to gently pat your face dry and then apply your skincare products.  If you the idea of applying skincare products to damp skin still sounds a bit strange to you experiment with your body moisturizer after the shower for a few days and see if you feel a difference.

There is one exception to this skincare rule: mineral sunscreen.  If applied to damp skin mineral sunscreen can run, give uneven coverage, and look white and chalky on the skin.

Source and Further Reading:  Tip 3 from 8 Ways to Make Your Skin-Care Products More Effective in Allure


Do You Need to Wait In-Between Applying Skincare Products? July 4, 2011

Should your morning or evening skincare routine be a waiting game?  Is there really a need to wait a certain period of time between applying your skincare products?

The answer is both yes and no.

Yes, you need to wait

Why?  First off, if the product itself in its instructions tells you to wait after applying it and before applying another product I would follow those instructions.  For instance, once I had a face primer that said to wait about 10 or 15 minutes after application before applying your make-up.  It took that long for the product to be absorbed.  It also was really annoying, and I ended up giving the product away.  So most of the time when a product’s instructions tell you to wait before applying anything else it is usually because that product needs to fully absorb into the skin and applying anything on top of it would hinder that absorption.  If that absorption doesn’t happen the next products you apply won’t go on as you want them to.  Products can even flake or roll of the skin.  Or if you apply a wet product on skin that is already damp or wet from a previous product you could end up with a big mess. 

Another reason for waiting in-between applying skincare products can be for comfort.  I’ll explain.  It could be that if you apply one product on top of another quickly you could experience uncomfortable tingling.  If you do experience tingling after applying skincare products one on top of the other quickly than apply one at a time and take a moment to do another activity in-between applying each product – such as brushing your teeth, putting in your contacts, getting dressed, etc.  It can be frustrating to have to apply your products piece meal but if the end result is comfortable and beautiful then it is worth it.

No, you don’t need to wait

If you use skincare products that absorb quickly into your skin then just go ahead and apply them one on top of the other without waiting.  As long as you don’t experience any discomfort and have any bad side effects like product pilling or rolling off your face than go ahead and apply quickly.


A few general skincare product application tips:


  • Apply the products with the thinnest consistency first, like serums, before moisturizers and creams.
  • Apply products with the least amount of color before those with more color.
  • Apply skincare treatment products, like antioxidant serums or retinols, directly to your skin after cleansing, then moisturizer, sunscreen, and finally your make-up.


For more skincare product application tips see Allure‘s article about how to best apply skincare products.  Or check out Paula Begoun’s advice on the same subject.


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