Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have one magic potion that you could apply every day, in the morning or at night, that would accomplish all of your skincare goals? It could tone in the morning, banish your blemishes, correct hyperpigmentation, protect you from the sun, and replenish and moisturize your skin before you jump under the covers at night. So, why doesn’t this multi-tasking elixir exist? Surely there is a formulation chemist out there that has thought of combining every active ingredient that we pine for in our products into one dream cream; Retinol, Hyaluronic Acid, Ceramides, Peptides, Glycolic Acid, to name a few.

Well, the fact is that certain ingredients just don’t play well with others. For example, you may have a water-soluble treatment molecule that you wish to apply to the skin but it won’t mix with an oil-soluble moisturizer; because oil and water do not mix. So, how does one overcome this combination conundrum? After the formulation chemists figured out how to get certain ingredients successfully suspended into specific products, a clever esthie came along and figured out the fine art of layering. Layering products one on top of the other gives an esthetician the opportunity to introduce all kinds of active molecules to the skin so that the outcomes are extraordinary and visible positive changes in the skin can be seen as soon as possible.

To understand the art of layering, we need to know the formulation secrets of the scientists that concoct our creams. The basic rule for making skin care products is that “like dissolves like” which means that water-soluble ingredients go into water-based products and fat or oil-soluble ingredients go into oil-based products. There are also tricks for the chemist to get a small amount of one into the other, but the basic rule generally applies. You’ll see water soluble, deeply penetrating molecules such as Vitamin C, in thin, quickly absorbing serums. Your thicker occlusive ingredients, such as Ceramides, will be present in richer creams or oils.

Now, how do we get all of these incredible ingredients into the skin? Skin is a barrier designed to keep things OUT, and it does a great job at this! Even when a product is perfectly formulated, only a small amount of active ingredients can wiggle into that epidermis and get down to the deeper layers where they do their best work. That is why the proper application of the products, especially when stacking one on top of the other, is of paramount importance.

Ready to try layering? Great! But what goes on first, second, third…?

Things like charge of the molecules (positive or negative), size of the molecules (only ones smaller than 500 Daltons can make it to the corneal layer), and solubility and viscosity of the product will affect how “low it can go”. This may sound complicated when considering your layering options, but there is an easy rule of thumb that you can follow so that layering can be simplified both for you, in the treatment room, and for your clients when they are applying their products at home. It goes like this. Starting with freshy cleansed skin, layer your products starting with thinnest to thickest. That’s it. You want to first apply the products with the ingredients where penetration into the skin is important (like antioxidants or acids in serums) and finish with the products that need to sit on top of the skin to lock in moisture (like emollients and humectants in moisturizers) or contain sun-reflecting minerals like in sunblock.

Here are some possible layering combinations using ID Skin products:

Anti-Aging Products: Glycolic Toner, Vita A Pro Serum, Ultra Peptide Eye Cream, Timeless Moisture, SunGuard or Luminous BB Cream

Hyperpigmentation Products: Glycolic Toner, Clarity Brightening Serum, Corrective Eye Serum, Glycolic 10% Cream, SunGuard or Luminous BB Cream

Blemish-Prone Products: AHA/BHA Toner, Clear Skin Serum, Blue Tansy Moisturizer, Clear Skin Spot Treatment, SunGuard or Luminous BB Cream

Are your clients ready to try layering at home? That is a good thing because not only will they experience faster results, but you will experience a greater profit for a win-win situation! If a client were to ask you for an anti-aging product, you could sell them the Timeless Moisture for a profit of $30. But if you were to sell them the layering combination of the Glycolic Toner, Vita A Pro Serum, Ultra Peptide Eye Cream, Timeless Moisture, and SunGuard, not only will they be delighted with rapid results, but you will realize a profit of $144.75. That’s almost 5 times more than the cream alone!

When you know the basics of layering, this technique can be used both in the treatment room and at home for superior results. Be an excellent esthie and share the benefits of layering to demonstrate your passion and professionalism for perfect product application. Contact us at ID Skin to try samples and get started. We’re here to help you “Be the Best Version of YOU”!