Serum Layering: The Serums That Are Even Better Together

And those that work better alone.

Some things are just better together. Think bacon and eggs. Hugs and kisses. Movies and popcorn. Vitamin C and hyaluronic acid serums. Wait, what? OK, so the last one might not have immediately sprung to mind, but layering serums is big news in beauty and an essential step to nailing your skincare routine.

When done properly, layering allows the concentrated formulations of serums to be absorbed into the skin and effectively target specific skin concerns such as dullness or dryness.

But before we all start slapping on serums willy-nilly, there are a few details to be aware of. Understanding which serums you can and can’t match up is important, as some ingredients go together especially well, while others aren’t so friendly in a duo and may be too much for your skin when used at the same time. And don’t forget, the order in which you apply your serums matters, too.

Serums To Layer Together

These power couple combinations are a match made in heaven.

Vitamin C and hyaluronic acid: Hyaluronic acid (HA) plays nicely with most serums generally, as it’s a hydrating ingredient. Pair it with vitamin C and you’ve got a powerhouse duo that brightens and plumps the skin (and who doesn’t want brighter, bouncier skin?). The bestselling Revitalift Filler 1.5% Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum and Revitalift 12% Pure Vitamin C Serum from L’Oreal Paris have proved to be such a success story together they’ve become known as CHa-CHa, a two-step serum layering routine.

Layer these two besties for brighter skin and enhanced hydration. Image: supplied

Suitable for most skin types, even sensitive, the two serums are used after cleansing either morning or night. Step one, the Revitalift 12% Pure Vitamin C Serum provides two-times brighter skin* and reduced pore visibility. Step two, the Revitalift Filler 1.5% Pure Hyaluronic Acid Face Serum plumps and hydrates in just one hour^, with dermatologist verified results.

Hyaluronic acid and retinol: Again, the hydration powers of HA is a good match for an active such as retinol. Separately, each of these ingredients are great for plumping and anti-ageing, respectively. Put them together and you have a winning combination, with HA combatting any potential drying effects of retinol.

Avoid These Pairings

Not all skincare ingredients are meant to go together, so when it comes to serums, err on the side of caution with these duos.

Vitamin C and retinol: These ingredients tend to be too much for the skin when used together, so use them at opposite ends of the day for maximum benefit, vitamin C in the morning and retinol at night (as retinol can increase photosensitivity).

Retinol and AHAs: Retinol is very effective at promoting skin cell turnover, but this process can make skin sensitive to AHAs and vice versa – so consider alternating days to reduce the risk of irritation.

The Golden Rules Of Layering

When you’ve settled on a routine, ensure you’re layering serums from the thinnest consistency first to the thickest last. This ensures each product has a chance to absorb properly without being blocked by heavier textures.

Apply serums in order from thinnest consistency to thickest for optimal absorption. Image: Getty

Allow each serum to absorb fully before you apply the next one. A basic rule of thumb is around 30 seconds to a minute, but it can vary depending on the product and your skin’s individual needs.

Remember, everyone’s skin is different, so it’s essential to pay attention to how your skin responds to each product and adjust your routine around it. If you’re unsure about how to layer specific products or have concerns about your skin or your skincare routine, consider a consultation with a dermatologist or skincare professional.

*Cosmeto-clinical scorage vs baseline, 63 subjects, 4 weeks
^Cosmeto-clinical study, 75 women, after 1 hour

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