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How do you get the best results from your skincare regime?

What order you should apply your skincare products?
Out with the old, in with the new – that tends to be our attitude to skincare come January when we catch the ‘New year, new you’ bug. While we should be switching to more hydrating, barrier-protecting products at this time of year, none of that will make a jot of difference if we don’t apply them in the correct order. A useful rule of thumb is to always apply your thinnest products first, like serum, then finish with the thickest – your moisturiser and sunscreen tick this box. Customers often ask how the right regime can help them to achieve the very best results for their skin, so Next caught up with Noella Gabriel, President and Co-Founder of Elemis to ask exactly when we should apply our skincare heroes. PS: Don’t have time for ten steps? Ease yourself in with steps 2, 7 and 8 - slotting in the best of the rest when your skin needs extra TLC.

1. Make-up Remover 
‘The first step is easy – if you are wearing make-up, it’s imperative to take it off. Look for an effective but gentle make-up remover that will swipe away all traces of mascara and eyeliner, leaving your skin ready for a thorough cleanse.’ Next loves: Estée Lauder Take It Away Gentle Eye & Lip Longwear Makeup Remover 100ml

2. Cleanser
‘Now it’s time to sweep away the day’s dirt and grime. Whether you prefer a cleansing balm, oil or cream formula, every great skincare routine begins with a proper cleanse – it is the foundation for healthy skin. Effective cleansing will rid the skin barrier of a build-up of aggressors – think sweat, city smog and pollution – without upsetting the natural pH levels of the acid mantle.’ Noella recommends: ELEMIS Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm 105g

3. Exfoliator
‘Exfoliators should be used once or twice a week to renew dull, congested skin. Whether you opt for a physical or chemical formula – physical scrubs ‘slough away’ dead skin cells, while chemical acids dissolve them - your face exfoliator should offer intense renewal for when your skin needs an especially deep cleanse.’ Noella loves: Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant 74g

4. Toner 
‘All skin types require toning. With a consistency similar to water, your toner’s job is to balance the skin barrier’s pH after cleansing – the optimum number is 5.5 – while removing any remaining residue as well as minerals that may be found in tap water. So don’t be tempted to skip this step.’Next loves: Murad Hydrating Toner 180ml

5. Face Mask 
‘I recommend applying a mask at this point in your routine once or twice a week. Your toner will have balanced the skin barrier, leaving it perfectly prepped for the potent ingredients in a face mask to be delivered deep into the skin.’  Next loves: Origins Dr Andrew Weil for Origins Mega-Mushroom Relief & Resilience Soothing Mask

6. Facial Oil 
‘A facial oil should be the first step in the ‘treatment’ phase of your daily skincare routine, as massage helps to smooth and soften the skin, ensuring it’s fully prepped for what is to come.’ Noella recommends: Elemis Superfood Facial Oil

7. Serum
‘Serums sink effortlessly into the skin’s deeper layers to deliver a potent hit of actives and target your primary skin concerns – be it ageing, pollution, blemishes, or irritation. Your choice of serum may well change throughout the month to meet the demands of your skin.’ Next loves: Sarah Chapman Overnight Facial

8. Eye cream
‘This product comes next, as you want the actives to sink straight into the delicate skin around your eye before applying your face cream. It’s important to treat the skin around your eye gently as it is thinner than elsewhere on the face. So tap your eye cream onto the skin without dragging or rubbing.’ Next loves: Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye Synchronized Complex Il

9. Moisturiser 
‘The densest product in the line-up is your anti-ageing cream. It serves toseal in the other skincare products that came before it, ensuring optimum efficacy from all those powerful actives. If your skin is feeling especially dry, you can finish with a couple of drops of your preferred facial oil, pressed over the top.’ Next loves: Liz Earle Skin Repair™ Rich Cream 50ml

10. SPF 
‘SPF is essential to keep your skin protected – and not just on sunny days. Look for both UVA and UVB protection and apply it after moisturising. It is a good idea to wait a few minutes to ensure the skin has fully absorbed your face cream before reaching for your sunscreen.’ Noelle loves: REN Clean Screen Mineral SPF 30 Mattifying Face Sunscreen Broad Spectrum Row

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