Is Layering Skincare Products Safe for Women Over 50?

By on August 11, 2020
Layering skincare

Layering skincare products can help drive nutrients deeper into the skin.  A healthy skin care routine is key to avoiding blemishes, sun spots, and other signs of aging. As you build a layering skincare routine, there are several ingredients you don’t want to combine.

By layering different products, you gently push the various nutrients deeper down into your skin. Layering can accelerate the absorption of the vitamins and nutrients into the skin, as opposed to applying a single product with all of the ingredients. This can make sense in theory, however, each cosmetic product you purchase is designed and tested on its own. In some cases, the active chemicals found in one product can counter the effect of another product – or, even worse, they can have a compound reaction that causes skin irritation or other issues.

It seems that there is a new anti-aging and skincare solution daily. You may need to work with a board-certified dermatologist or take time to learn about the new ingredients in cosmetic products to find out how they interact with each other and whether or not two skincare products are compatible. Having a basic understanding of what ingredients should not be mixed together with your skincare layering process can help save you from skin issues.

Vitamin C and AHAs/BHAs

Vitamin C is a common ingredient in skin serums. This nutrient is essential for the production of healthy skin and it can help support healthy cell turnover. Taking or applying vitamin C is a great way to bolster your skin. Do not combine it with alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) or beta hydroxy acids (BHAs).

AHAs and BHAs are fundamentally different but are commonly used in chemical skin exfoliation formulas. Their acidic characteristics remove dead cells. In some concentrations, they can even remove the thin external surface of the skin to trigger the body’s healing response. With Vitamin C being acidic too, combining these ingredients will throw the pH balance off. If the pH level gets too low, you risk burning your skin.

Vitamin A and AHAs/BHAs

Retinol, a type of vitamin A, is known for its powerful anti-aging properties. It is commonly used as an ingredient in lotions, serums, and other skincare products. Also known as retinoid, this type of vitamin A can help accelerate cell turnover and significantly reduce the appearance of wrinkles as well as other signs of aging. On the surface, it may that combining vitamin A and acids like AHAs or BHAs can yield amazing results.

Vitamin A works by removing the outermost layer of the skin. Adding this to other acidic ingredients will end up causing skin irritation and scaring if not used correctly. Overusing chemical exfoliants can cause severe skin damage and result in redness, irritation, and oozing wounds in the worst cases, so you should avoid combining these.

Retinol and Vitamin C

Retinol, Vitamin A, work best in alkaline formulas, cosmetic products that have a pH reading on the higher end of the scale. Vitamin C, an acidic ingredient, will create a skin pH that is too acidic if mixed with a Retinol. Vitamin C is found in a variety of products, but it is a difficult ingredient to use in cosmetic formulas. The Vitamin C will only remain an active ingredient and effective when used in an acidic state (maintains a low pH). Retinol and Vitamin A’s become inactive if the pH level is too low, and is only effective as long as the pH reading remains close to the ideal pH level.

If this pH level is not right, Vitamin C becomes inactive and your body won’t use them for skin production.

Salicylic Acid and Vitamin C

Can you use Vitamin C and salicylic acid together? We’ve covered the use of BHAs like Salicylic Acid and C vitamins, but it’s important to make a caveat for this specific combination. Unlike most other combinations on this list, Salicylic Acid and  Vitamin C both operate at similar pH levels but are not identical. Many people believe that due to the similar pH levels that this combination may work together and provide superficial as well as deep exfoliation.

These two ingredients together may produce dryness. Depending on the amount of sun exposure, this can develop into mild peeling and flaking. You’re better off avoiding this combination.

Oil-Based and Water-Based Formulas

Skincare products can come from a variety of sources. Products can be categorized into either oil or water-based formulas. Cosmetics that feature an oil-based formula are generally thicker and are better at hydrating your skin. Recent advancements have allowed oils to become a common ingredient in many products.

Water-based cosmetics tend to be thinner and are more suitable for naturally oily skin. Water-based and are less likely to contain pore-clogging ingredients. They are a lighter alternative than cosmetics made from oil.

But, as the old adage says, oil and water simply don’t mix. When you apply oil-based products, you’re creating a barrier that doesn’t allow for the absorption of waterbased products. Water-based solutions often have chemical preservatives that impact products made from oil.

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Is Layering Skincare Products Safe for Women Over 50?