How to Apply Serum to Your Face

Face serum is a crucial part of any holistic skincare routine, providing many of the vitamins and minerals your skin needs to repair itself from more intense products like exfoliators and toners. However, knowing how to apply serum on your face is just as important as understanding the benefits you might get from doing so correctly.

This guide will serve as a basic overview of face serum application. The general process below is meant to be adapted for different skin types and skincare routines and is by no means ironclad. Remember to do what works best for your skin above all!

What is Face Serum? 

While face serum is very similar to moisturizer, it’s not exactly the same thing. Serum is a distinct type of skincare product that can provide different benefits from moisturizer, even though it can also help your skin avoid drying out over the course of a day.

Here’s the main difference:

  • Moisturizers are designed almost solely to keep your skin from drying out/provide your skin with extra moisture. Some top-tier moisturizers will also come with a few extra vitamins or minerals, but these are just bonuses
  • Face serums provide nourishing vitamins and minerals to the lower layers of your skin. Doing so helps your skin regenerate more fully each day and can help with other issues, like collagen and elastin production

Think of moisturizer as a preventative product while face serum is a boosting product. This being said, you should still use both moisturizers and face serums in any thorough skincare routine. If you don’t use serum, your skin may not retain its youthful appearance for as long even though you’ll get short-term moisture protection from a moisturizer.

What Benefits Does Face Serum Provide? 

As touched on above, the primary benefits for face serums are bolstering and restorative. Face serum can:

  • Provide your skin with vitamins and minerals. These nourishing ingredients go to the dermis or deeper, allowing your skin to take full advantage of their effects.
  • Make your skin look and feel a lot younger and healthier, especially if you have dry or wrinkly skin. This is because the above vitamins and minerals give your skin the building blocks it needs to produce younger and healthier skin cells while improving collagen and elastin production.
  • Boost moisture levels. This is more of an added bonus since many face serums contain moisturizing ingredients like hyaluronic acid.
  • Shrink the appearance of pores over time, depending on the ingredients contained in a given face serum. 
  • Help with hyperpigmentation, or help your skin with the appearance of blemishes and other injuries. Hyperpigmentation and similar marks are usually caused by improper skin regeneration or skin cell production. 
  • Helps your skin to age more gracefully. Your face will passively and unavoidably produce wrinkles over time as your skin dries out and your skin cells become less able to make healthy cells. But the better nourished your skin is, the slower this process happens and the fewer wrinkles you’ll see accrue over time. 

As you can see, there are tons of reasons why you should use a great face serum. Add it to your facial skincare routine to round out your skincare efforts, and you’ll look much better each time you check the mirror for wrinkles or spots!

Serum’s Role in a Skincare Routine

Serum is a bolstering or boosting product in a skincare routine that properly uses other products like toners, cleansers, and moisturizers. It’s not designed to help with cleaning or protecting the skin the way many other products are.

Therefore, you should only apply face serum in the right order and at the appropriate time.

Suki Skincare’s Purifying Face Serum is meant to be used with all of our other natural skincare products

Created with organic components like lavender oil, willow bark extract, apple fruit extract, and purified water, it’s a perfect complementary serum to our toners, moisturizers, and more!

How to Apply Serum Correctly

Want to start applying face serum during your skincare routine? Here’s how to do so correctly.

  • Apply face serum only after you have thoroughly washed and cleansed your face. If your skincare routine is complete, this will involve using a cleanser and a toner. The latter product can penetrate deep into your pores and get rid of oil, dead skin cells, and dirt.
  • After using cleanser and toner, your pores will be open and clear of debris. Thus, this is the best time to use a face serum since the vitamins and minerals the serum contains can penetrate as deeply into the pores as possible. This gives the vital nutrients the best chance of reaching the lower layers of your skin. 
  • Therefore, the ideal facial skincare routine goes like this: cleanser, toner, face serum. Only after applying serum should you use other protective or sealing products, like moisturizer or sunscreen. 

How often should you apply serum to your face?  

Since serum doesn’t cause any particularly harsh side effects, you can use face serum every time you go through your skincare routine. It’s not like exfoliation, where including it too often can lead to adverse results.

There’s also some wisdom in applying face serum at night instead of the morning if you have to pick one time or the other. That’s because the nighttime hours are usually less stressful for your face since you aren’t out and about, exposing your pores to environmental contaminants and stressors. 

The nighttime is also the regenerative period for your body, so it’s when your skin can use the majority of vitamins and minerals absorbed throughout the day. 

Serum Application Technique

Lots of people aren’t sure how to physically apply serum to their faces when they are first starting out. 

Here’s a basic rundown:

  • To apply serum to your face, squirt or dispense a dime-sized amount of the liquid onto your fingers depending on the bottle or container you have. You can use more than this if you desire, but here’s the thing: your face can only make use of so many vitamins and minerals at once. At a certain point, using extra face serum doesn’t provide extra benefits. It’s literally too much of a good thing and a waste of your precious serum. 
  • Another way to measure the amount of face serum to use is one to two drops. The total serum amount shouldn’t be larger than the surface of your pointer finger. 
  • Once you have dispensed the right amount of serum, rub the serum into your face while your skin is still dewy from toner. Rub your skin in small, concentric circles, moving quickly to spread the serum around all of your face’s skin. 
  • If you run out of serum halfway through, put another drop on your finger and finish the job. 
  • Be sure to thoroughly rub the serum into your skin to make sure it penetrates into your pores correctly. 
  • You can, alternatively, use an extra drop of face serum as a spot treatment. For instance, if you have some small hyperpigmentation patches, it’s a good idea to apply a single drop of face serum directly to the affected area(s). This guarantees that that skin will get the vitamins and minerals it needs to repair itself. 

After applying the face serum, it’s often a good idea to wait a minute or two to allow your skin time to absorb the serum and its nutrients. This way, any remaining microdroplets won’t be moved around or brushed aside when you apply moisturizer or any other skincare product afterward.

Applying Serum for Different Skin Types

The good thing about face serum is that it’s meant to be used with all skin types. Unlike with exfoliating products or moisturizers, it works with any skin condition.

  • If you have sensitive skin, all you need to do when applying face serum is be careful as you rub the solution into your pores. It may help to use a cotton ball or swab to do so if your fingers are too rough for comfort. 
  • If you have overly dry skin, no need to worry – just rub the face serum into your pores as you would if you had normal or combination skin. If your skin absorbs the serum to quickly for adequate spread, use a little extra. 
  • If you have oily skin, use only a drop or so of face serum maximum. But, you shouldn’t have any issues if you apply the face serum after using a toner as recommended. . 


Ultimately, face serum is one of the best skincare products you can apply, and knowing how to apply it correctly to your skin is crucial to ensure you get the full benefits. 

Don’t hesitate to reach out and ask us additional questions if you want help using face serum correctly or want to know how to adapt it to your unique skincare regimen.


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