How is a serum different from a moisturizer? Which one should I use and when? Which one will be best for my skin?
These are common doubts that show a general lack of knowledge about facial hygiene. This is why the role of the industry and cosmetics professionals is so important.
What are the differences between cream and serum?
Both serum and cream are two daily hygiene essentials. Any professional would be able to tell you the most important differences, since the cream has a very different purpose and texture than the serum.
The most obvious difference between serum and moisturizer is their texture. Serums are more liquid, lighter and therefore more easily absorbed by the skin. On the other hand, the moisturizing cream has a greasy texture, with fatty components that take longer for the skin to absorb.
In terms of formulation, the serum is more concentrated, has more active ingredients, with a significant water base. The serum is used for a specific purpose and, for this purpose, we will use different active ingredients associated with that purpose.
For example, hyaluronic acid to nourish, antioxidants to firm, etc. Being more concentrated, the serum can reach deeper layers of the skin (down to the dermis), so its effect is greater.
It could be said that with the serum we manage to act immediately on a specific problem, while with the cream we are performing a preventive task of protection.
In the field of action, on the skin, creams aim to moisturize and are formulated with active ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, vitamin C, vitamin E and retinoids.
When choosing a serum, we will base our choice on the active ingredient it includes, in order to try to act and correct in a specific way. When choosing the cream, however, it is necessary to take into account the type of skin.
How far do they penetrate?
Creams work on the epidermis, they cannot penetrate the skin barrier. For this reason, for example, some creams include sun protection. They not only help to moisturize, but also to protect the skin from external aggressions and the creation of free radicals.
Although serums are usually more expensive than moisturizers because they include more components and their formulations are more complex. Serums are used in smaller quantities (no more than one drop), so they usually last longer.
For my skin: serum or cream?
Serum or moisturizer? It is best to use both products in combination. The serum will act on deeper layers of the skin, but it does not moisturize, so it is necessary to complete the process with a cream that helps to retain water and improve the absorption of the active ingredients of the serum.
How do I apply the serum and cream?
The serum and cream can be applied in the morning and evening, but some experts recommend the evening as the best time to use them. Just before you go to bed. The reason is that at this time cell renewal is at its highest level and blood circulation increases, so the skin has the best conditions for the active ingredients to penetrate.
In case of daytime use, do not forget to complement it with a sunscreen or a facial cream with SPF to protect from ultraviolet rays and prevent photoaging of the skin.
First of all, you should cleanse your face. This is key, otherwise the serum will not be able to work effectively.
With a clean face, the serum should now be applied. As it is a more concentrated formulation, it is not necessary to use a large quantity, just a few drops will be absorbed quickly. You must make circular movements, from inside to outside.
Next, it is time to add moisturizer to the daily facial hygiene routine so that the skin is not left unprotected. Again with circular movements and without the need to apply a large amount, as this will not be absorbed.
The serum should never be applied without cleansing the face or over the cream.
Can I use only serum?
Specialists do not recommend using only serum in daily hygiene. Or to put it another way, you should never stop using moisturizer under any circumstances, regardless of your skin type, whether it is oily, combination or dry.