In Which Order Do I Apply My Skincare Products?
Do you feel like you need a Ph.D to research the best daily skincare routine? At La Suite, we believe in keeping it simple. It’s true that there are so many great skincare products today. But some are trendy and skippable, while some are essential, like our Non Negotiables (vitamin C, SPF, and vitamin A)
What really matters is building a targeted, easy-to-follow skincare routine that prioritizes your needs and helps you achieve your goals. “La Suite is not about overly complicated routines—we want you to get your beauty sleep!” says founder Rhea Souhleris Grous.
So what’s the best order for your morning and evening skincare routine? Read on, or skip to our at-a-glance infographic!
Why Does The Order of My Skincare Routine Matter?
The skin’s main job is to keep things out—and it does a good job, which is why it can be challenging to get all those beneficial, age-defying ingredients in.
“Order matters,” says Rhea. “We want to prep the skin and apply products in the right order so the ingredients can do their magic. Following a great at-home routine is critical to great results.”
How to Layer Your Skincare Products
La Suite’s general rule is to layer your skincare products like you would layer your clothing on a chilly day: thinnest to thickest. Think liquids to serums to creams. Products with ingredients designed to penetrate the skin (like vitamin C and retinol in serums) need to be applied closer to the skin in order to be most effective, followed by products designed to lay on top of the skin (like moisturizers and sunscreens).
Daytime Skincare, Step by Step
The AM routine is all about retaining moisture, and protecting the skin from the sun, pollution, and other environmental damage you’ll encounter throughout the day. We’ve taken the guesswork out of it here!
Step 1: Cleanser
In the morning, wash with a gentle face cleanser designed for your skin type. Use a wet washcloth to remove.
- Normal, Dry and Combination Skin - La Suite Cold Cream Cleanser
- Oily Skin - La Suite Clear Skin Alpha Beta Gel Cleanser
Step 2: Toner
If you’re thinking about skipping this step, think again. Rhea’s a huge fan of toner, and here’s why. Old-school toners were created to restore the skin’s pH after using harsh old-school soaps—but both toners and soaps have improved over the years. “Toners are not the end of cleansing, they’re the beginning of your skincare mission!” says Rhea. “They prep the skin for hydration, making it better able to absorb products. They can exfoliate, firm, balance the skin—or all three.”
Here are La Suite’s top picks, based on your skin type:
- Sensitive Skin: Environ Botanical Infused Moisturizing Toner
- Dry Skin: Forlle’d P-effect Refining Lotion
- Normal Skin: Environ Vita-Peptide Toner
- Combination Skin: Forlle’d AC Clear Lotion
- Oily Skin: Environ Sebu-Tone Clarifier
Step 3: Antioxidant Serum
Serums are targeted treatments with a light consistency designed to penetrate the skin, so they come next in your routine. For daytime, La Suite recommends antioxidant serums. Chosen based on your skin type, these wonder products can brighten, soothe, and protect.
- Normal to Dry Skin: La Suite Skincare 20% Active Vitamin C Serum
- Combination to Oily Skin: La Suite Skincare Vitamin C + E + Ferulic Acid Soothing Antioxidant Serum - coming soon
- Super Sensitive: Green Tea Soothing Concentrate
TIP: Spot Treatment (if necessary)
We wish acne spot treatments were just for teenagers, but most of us struggle with occasional blemishes. When the need arises, for best results dot La Suite’s gentle but effective treatment just where you need it after cleansing and toning. If it’s a big blemish, treat it right after your toner. If it’s not so bad, apply spot treatment after serum and before moisturizer.
Step 5: Hydrating Serum
The goal of this step is to add hydration to the skin with a water-based serum, so we can seal it in afterwards with a thicker oil or moisturizer. “Often clients are confused about the difference between hydrating serums and oils,” says Rhea. Oils do not increase water levels; they prevent water loss.” La Suite recommends these genius products:
- Normal to Dry Skin: La Suite Tri-Peptide Hydrating Serum
- Combination to Oily Skin: La Suite Green Tea Hydrating Serum
Step 6: Eye Cream
Eye cream deserves its own step: it’s formulated especially to hydrate and protect the delicate tissue around the eyes. Eye creams can also firm the skin and address dark circles and puffiness—apply gently, and a little goes a long way!
Step 7: Moisturizer
“Everyone needs a moisturizer—even if you have oily skin,” says Rhea.
Yes, the skin produces its own oil (or sebum) to coat and protect the skin, but it’s often no match for damaging UV rays and environmental conditions. What’s the best time to apply moisturizer? Right now, while the skin is still damp from applying serums. Tailor your moisturizer to your skin type for best results.
- Normal Skin: La Suite Skincare Niacinamide Hydrating Cream
- Dry Skin: La Suite Skincare Squalane Nourishing Cream
- Combination to Oily Skin: La Suite Skincare Green Tea Soothing Emulsion
Step 8: Sunscreen
Sunscreen is the non-negotiable last step of your morning skincare routine. At La Suite, we recommend mineral sunscreen, which works by reflecting UV rays and is perfect for sensitive skin. Moisturizers and foundations that advertise SPF don’t contain enough to be effective. To protect your skin and the routine you’ve so carefully applied, don’t skip sunscreen.
TIP: Apply a half-teaspoon of sunscreen of at least SPF 30 to the face (all the way to the hairline), ears, neck, and décolleté. Reapply throughout the day.
- All skin types and tones: La Suite Skincare Sheer Mineral Sunscreen+ SPF 50+
Or check out our full SPF assortment for light, medium, and dark tinted and powder options.
TIP for darker skin tones: Make sure skin is well hydrated before applying SPF, whether sheer or tinted. Moisturized skin helps avoid a chalky cast from mineral sunscreen (which is really the best kind!).
Evening Skincare, Step by Step
Your skin naturally repairs itself at night, so the La Suite PM skincare routine is designed around giving the skin what it needs to succeed. Now’s the time for retinol, the powerhouse in any skincare routine. Fine lines, sun damage, acne, dark patches, laxity: all these conditions are improved by regular retinol use. For best results, retinol should be accompanied by products and ingredients that make it more tolerable and effective. Here’s the ideal order of skincare application to do just that:
Step 1: Double Cleanser
A thorough PM cleanse is a La Suite must. “If you don’t completely remove the day’s makeup, sunscreen, pollution, and grime, you’re polishing a dirty floor,” says Rhea. At night, she recommends a double cleansing routine, which involves first using a cleansing oil or an oil-fortified cream cleanser, then washing your face again. “Oily skin types do not need to fear using an oil-based cleanser,” says Rhea. “In fact, it should be your best friend.” The key to using oil cleansers is proper removal with a wet washcloth.
Select your second cleanser based on your skin’s current needs: repeat-cleanse with a creamy cleanser (La Suite’s Lactic Acid Cleanser is great for all skin types), or use a more targeted cleanser for issues like acne or clogged pores.
- La Suite Cold Cream Cleanser
Step 2: Toner
As in the morning, the first phase of your hydration routine is all about preparing the skin for the products to follow.
- All skin types: Forlle’d P-effect Refining Lotion
Step 3: Retinol (Vitamin A)
Why use retinol only at night? Vitamin A degrades when exposed to air, light, and heat, rendering it inactive. So save it for the evening, when your skin does the bulk of its repairing, restoring and regenerating as you sleep. Learn more about retinol, the powerhouse of your PM routine. Apply your retinol from the outside of the face, moving in towards the center. And don’t forget your nose!
- All skin types: La Suite Skincare Retinol Serum
Step 4: Eye Cream
Maintaining if not improving the skin quality in the delicate eye area ensures that the eyelid skin does not easily become lax and lose its smooth appearance as we age. La Suite’s formulation includes retinol for enhanced repair.
Step 5: Moisturizer
Though it’s technically fine to use the same moisturizer for day and night, since La Suite incorporates retinol in every evening routine, Rhea recommends a simple night moisturizer that uses ceramides, hyaluronic acids, or squalane to reinforce the skin barrier. She also loves anti-inflammatory ingredients like green tea polyphenols for their soothing properties. If your skin is very dry, you may want to add a hydrating serum or even a face oil before applying your night cream. Since the PM routine is all about retinol, keep the rest simple.
Normal to Dry Skin: La Suite Skincare Squalane Nourishing Cream
Combination to Oily Skin: La Suite Skincare Green Tea Soothing EmulsionThe Best Order of Skincare Products
Skincare use doesn’t have to be a big question mark. There’s an ideal order in which to use your skincare products, and it’s in La Suite’s at-a-glance guide right here!