Skincare Synergy: Do’s and Don’ts for Effective skincare Product Combination

Mary Joseph
Mary Joseph July 7, 2023
Updated 2023/07/07 at 7:36 PM

Combining skincare products can enhance their efficacy and address specific skin concerns effectively. However, it is essential to understand the do’s and don’ts of product combination to ensure optimal results and avoid potential skin issues.

During this journey, we will explore insights on the do’s and don’ts of combining skincare products, helping you create a synergistic routine for healthier, more radiant skin.

Skincare Ingredients to mix together

While the aforementioned components don’t work well when combined, there are certain other substances that can really be improved by being combined with other goods.

Vitamin C and E and sunscreen

Sunscreen protects skin from the damaging effects of visible light.

Powerful antioxidants like vitamin C and vitamin E can actually increase your sun protection when used in tandem with sunscreen.

Vitamin C and Ferulic acid

Combined vitamin C and ferulic acid are potent ingredients give you a brightening agent that helps target signs of ageing like fine lines, wrinkles and uneven skin tone.

Software’s Vitamin C + Ferulic Serum contains a whopping 15 per cent dose of vitamin C to target dark spots, dullness and help even out discolouration.

Retinol and hyaluronic acid

Due to its ability to induce collagen, hyaluronic acid is frequently regarded as the anti-aging holy grail. Additionally, it is a component found in the majority of moisturizing skincare products.

This makes it the ideal complement to retinol treatments, which can occasionally cause side effects including excessive dryness, flaking, redness, and irritation while also treating acne and ageing.

Hyaluronic acid compliments retinol by relaxing the skin and doesn’t hinder the vitamin A product’s effectiveness.

Vitamin C and vitamin E

Both vitamin C and E work to counteract free radical damage from UV exposure, but they each combat different types of UV damage.

When combined, they give your skin double the antioxidants to fight damage. You can also add in ferulic acid to give you an added boost of protection.

Skincare ingredients not to mix

Not all skincare ingredients are designed to be used together and in some cases, certain combinations can cause the skin to become irritated or can lessen the effectiveness of products.

Here are the skincare ingredient combinations to avoid.

Vitamin C and AHAs / BHAs

All AHAs and BHAs, along with acids, should not be used with vitamin C.

The outer layer of our skin’s barrier is strengthened in large part by vitamin C, but when mixed with an acid, it can become even more potent and irritate your skin severely.

Retinoids or retinol and vitamin C

Since vitamin C is not something our bodies naturally generate, it is regarded as a vital component for our bodies. It is also a common treatment for skin pigmentation and UV damage.

Ascorbic acid, which is frequently cited, is important for producing collagen and scavenging free radicals, both of which help ward off the onset of aging.

Retinol and vitamin C should not be combined, nevertheless, since this increases the likelihood of skin irritation and redness, especially in those with sensitive skin.

If you do decide to combine them, start by utilizing only one ingredient for four weeks to obtain a full skin cell turnover. Also, make sure to protect your skin barrier with nourishing moisturizing components.

Use the items on various days, or divide each element into a regimen for the day and the night.

To avoid putting these products together, for instance, take vitamin C in the morning and retinol in the evening.

Retinoids or retinol and benzoyl peroxide

Retinoids, also known as retinol products, are excellent anti-aging ingredients because they may replace dead skin cells with new ones, improving skin texture, reducing acne outbreaks, and improving the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

To treat acne, benzoyl peroxide functions as a topical antibacterial. That makes sense as a nice match. regrettably, no.

In fact, according to some studies, benzoyl peroxide actually makes retinol ineffective.

Combining these two skincare products can result in dryness, flaking, or skin irritation. Benzoyl peroxide is also believed to normally be a powerful enough therapy for acne-prone skin.

Retinoids or retinol and salicylic acid

In general, it’s advised against combining retinol with salicylic acid in your skincare regimen owing to the possibility of redness or other unpleasant side effects.

However, combining retinol with salicylic acid might be advantageous if you have dark spots, acne-prone face from excessive oil production, or aged skin, provided you do so gently and cautiously.

Retinoid or retinol and AHAs / BHAs

Your skin can be exfoliated with hydroxy acids, such as beta hydroxy acids (BHAs) and alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs).

Glycolic acid, lactic acid, mandelic acid, and citric acid are a few AHAs as examples. Salicylic acid, which can also be sodium salicylate, is the most often used BHA.

To prevent skin irritation, it is better to use all three treatments at different times throughout the day.

Niacinamide and AHAs / BHAs

A potent anti-aging substance that brightens skin and reduces redness is niacinamide.

Niacinamide should not be used with acidic skincare chemicals like alpha hydroxy acids, beta hydroxy acids, or even vitamin C, same to how retinol should not be.

Niacinamide as it is can have a negative chemical reaction that results in redness and flushing when taken with an acid.

You should wait at least 30 minutes between items, or take your acids in the evening and your niacinamide in the morning.

Vitamin C and benzoyl peroxide

Benzoyl peroxide actually oxidises vitamin C which renders them both ineffective. They are best used on alternate days.

Benzoyl peroxide and hydroquinone

Benzoyl peroxide attacks acne, whereas hydroquinone is a skin-lightening chemical frequently used to treat hyperpigmentation.

You should never use these two substances together since you run the danger of severely coloring your skin and aggravating it.


SPF should be the only skincare product you use. It’s the only method to adequately shield skin against environmental irritants and cancer, both of which can cause early indications of aging. Given its significance, SPF may be used on top of any skincare component.

SPF may be incorporated into every skincare regimen.

Don’t Mix: SPF with makeup or moisturizers.

SPF can feel like an extra step in an already-extensive skincare routine, but don’t try to take shortcuts. “Don’t mix your sunscreen with your makeup or moisturizer and apply as on — sunscreen should be applied as a single layer to preserve the protective factors,” says Dr. Lortscher.

You can check out skincare routine for different skin types to know how to effectively take care of your skin.


Combining skincare products can be a game-changer for addressing specific skin concerns and achieving healthier skin. By understanding your skin type, patch testing new products, and following instructions, you can create an effective and synergistic skincare routine. Avoid mixing incompatible ingredients and layer products strategically. Give each product time to absorb and never forget to protect your skin from the sun. With these professional do’s and don’ts, you can unlock the full potential of your skincare products and achieve radiant, rejuvenated skin.

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