Skincare Order of Ops

unnamed“What is the right skincare order?”

is probably one of the most asked questions I hear. I’m reposting this one because well, skincare never goes out of style. Every client that sits in my chair gets a skincare diagnosis because I’m just OCD like that. And I believe that pretty skin = pretty makeup. And a pretty soul = pretty skin.  So indulge and love yourself. You’re worth it!

* If you’d like your own consult in person or via skype, do schedule via


The Shimmy

Like makeup, skin care is a very personal and specific recipe per given face. The type of skin one has in regards to whether it’s oily, normal, combination or dry is just one factor. Environment, diet, age, and lifestyle are also factors that must be taken into consideration.

For me, I found that my skin changed dramatically when I moved to New York from Miami Beach a little over two years ago. Suddenly, I found my world rocked by very dry skin and a full-time position with Mac Cosmetics that included daily beat downs (that’s camera ready makeup in Mac talk), which only emphasized the dryness.  I grew frustrated but knew that good skin equals amazing makeup.

Realizing that I’d reached a point that I not merely wanted but NEEDED a skincare wardrobe for the seasons, much like my clothes, I dove in.  I would later find out, this applies to my foundation and skin makeup as well.  This
momentary dilemma made me grateful for my path in the Beauty world, but made me think: what would I have done if I wasn’t a skin and makeup expert?

Then a few days ago, a fellow mommy friend asked me for skincare advice, simultaneously recalling the above memory and inspiring this post.  Kisha, I’m writing this for you and for those like you, new to makeup and skincare and not sure what a serum is or does, and wants to know what to use and what goes on where, when and how.

The Skincare Order of Operations are as follows: sincare order of operation

  • Wash your face. Morning and night. There are multiple types of cleansers, ranging from a milk to a gel, foaming and wash off oil.  Foaming and gel formulas work best on oily skin. Milk and oil cleansers best on normal to dry. Despite what it sounds like, the oil cleansers like the Bobbi Brown Soothing Cleansing Oil work great at removing makeup, including the long wearing formulas. (Check out this complete kit with it!)  You just pump some onto dry hands and rub it all over your face.  Then rinse off with warm water and watch your day go down the drain.  There is no oily residue if you rinsed well.  Personally, I wash off my makeup with coconut oil.  You can see my post on its many uses here.  Afterwards, I use the Fresh Soy Face Cleanser to wash off the oil.  Side note: DO NOT EVER SLEEP IN YOUR MAKEUP. I don’t care what state or hour you get in at, program your unconscious to wash it off before bed. Not only will it mess up your pillows, it will age you 10 years over time if you sleep in it regularly, no doubt.
  • Apply a toner. There is a wide range of types of toners. If shopping at a drugstore, I love the Simple Soothing Facial Toner. The entire line is formulated for sensitive skin. For a natural toner, I will use rose water. I buy it at Whole Foods or any health type store. I also love the options at Mario Badescu as well as the Micellar Cleansing Water with Rose Petals by Nuxe.  Mario is great for beginners because the bottles actually say what type of skin the toner is best for as well as having a great price point. He can be found at Blue Mercury or Nordstrom.
  • Apply eye cream. I use my ring finger to apply ANYTHING skincare related to my eyes, including eye cream and primers. My mother told me it gives the least amount of pressure and I believe her.  Currently, I’m using Premier Cru The Eye Cream by Caudalie.  Caudalie is grape derived, from France and this particular collection within the line has a Reservatrol, to lift and firm. I apply eye cream day and night with my ring finger along the oracle bone, from brow to underneath the eye.  Side note: do not apply any eye cream to the eyelids in the morning. This will inhibit your eye makeup to set, causing it to move throughout the day. 635494114003-phyto-corrective-gel
  • Press in serum. Serums activate the layer of skin underneath the top layer that we see. The way it activates it depends on the active ingredient in the particular type of serum being used.  I use it morning and night after I shower or wash my face, and apply it by pressing it into my T zone.  This way the pores are open from the heat of the water.  I don’t put face serums in the eye area.  In the beginning, I started with the Bobbi Brown Intensive Skin Supplement, which is like a multivitamin for the skin. Now I use SkinCeuticals Phyto Corrective Gel at night and the Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Serum during the day.
    These both serve to correct the calm the redness I typically have.  Along with preventative work under cover, the serum also allows for the skin to absorb more of what is placed on top of it, acting much a like a conduit for moisturizer. Serums are preventative in my book. Hence, if you’re under 25-27 and don’t have problematic skin, you don’t need them bc your body is still reproducing cells. If you’re 27+, serums are your friend.
  • Apply moisturizer. The type of moisturizer you use again depends on your situation and budget. I like to use thicker moisturizers during the winter and gel based ones in the summer.  Skincare is something I have accepted I need to spend money on as a 30+ gal.  When I bought the Cru eye cream, it came with a trial size of Premier Cru The Cream that similar active ingredients as The Eye Cream. I’ve been on it for a little over a week and I love it! I switch off between that
    and SkinCeuticals Face Cream.

Final Thoughts

So this is a basic rundown of things mixed with what I use to keep my swagger on point.  There are also masks and exfoliators, etc. But I’ll save that for another post. Or if you need to know NOW, comment below!

In the meantime, I’d love to hear what you use and are doing! These are just a handful of products I’m familiar with.   Feel free to shoot me a comment or message with what’s working for you and/or your concern, and I’ll reply with what products I recommend.












xo, @krisdelarenta

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