Facial care: order of use?

Well, I guess the title says it all, literally.

The way beauty people always told me was this order: cleanse, exfoliate, pat dry,apply astringent/toner, moisturize, apply makeup.


That’s what I get for hitting “submit”, then not paying any atttention to whether or not the thread actually went through.


New skin care program for me, and it does seem to be helping with this stupid adult acne.

The main new products are a tea tree oil facial wash, used twice a day and tea tree oil dabbed onto zits twice a day.

I continue to use a medicated exfoliant containing salicylic acid twice a week, but this morning I realized that I didn’t know if using it before I wash my face is the best thing - because aren’t I then washing off the medication part of the exfoliant?

But, at the same time, things are getting better with my skin - a very noticable decrease in the severity of the zits (it’s the horrid cystic kind too, so it’s very apparent with my pale skin). Should I switch the order of the exfoliant/wash or should I stick with the way it is, since it seems to be helping?

I wash with gentle cleanser, pat dry. Use toner to remove makeup traces. Then I exfoliate using 2% beta hydroxy acid. If my skin has a breakout, I’ll use benzoyl peroxide on the zit. Then moisterizer.

If I were you, I’d use the medicated exfoliant after washing my face rather than before.

Here’s a great skin care reference:


Hey monster, we must have similar skin :slight_smile:

I use gentle cleanser for oily skin…at night I cover my face with benzoyl peroxide to prevent the ever-present zit-threat, and then 2% beta hydroxy acid. In the morning, I just use the 2% beta after washing.

Since I started using a gentle non-drying cleanser, I’ve found that I don’t even need moisturizer…

Lsura, I think that a good approach is starting with the fewest products possible, then adding products that help. If a program is working, it may be on account of only one of the products, so the others may be just a waste of money.

cosmeticscop.com (see monster’s link) has great advice for acne-prone skin. I found a (pretty simple) routine that worked for me immediately–I had pretty bad adult acne on a regular basis, I’m fair-skinned, and it’s been about 4 years…I hardly get a zit. I had to try some different stuff to find out what worked for me, but I think once something works, you’ll know it immediately.