Mixing vs. Layering Products

Expert Advice: A Dermatologist’s Take On This Beauty Trend

June 10, 2017

"A premium skin care product has been carefully and expertly formulated; to add something else could completely destroy its efficacy and activity of the key ingredients."

Dr. Carl R. Thornfeldt, Dermatologist and Founder of Epionce

Every day there seems to be a story on the next hottest, newest, best anti-aging ingredient that will dramatically change and simplify your beauty routine. You think about it a bit and realize that none of your products have this ingredient. You wonder if simply adding one ingredient can make a difference. For skin care, there is not only a plethora of DIY recipes, but many claim that all you have to do is add that ingredient to your cream already being used. Many others claim that it is important to leave each product formulation alone, but simply layer multiple products. Which approach is the best way to get beautiful skin? An expert weighs in.


Dr. Carl R. Thornfeldt, practicing dermatologist and founder of Epionce clinical skin care, advises not to mix. He equates the rules of formulation chemistry to cooking. There is a marked difference between a meal cooked at home vs. one created by a professionally trained chef. There are certain steps that need to be followed, seasonings added at a specific time, cooking time and temperatures – all factors that culminate into the perfect dish. As with cooking, there is a scientific process that needs to be followed when developing products that feel good and actually work. Formulation experts understand how to balance the nuances of chemistry to create safe and effective products.


Since layering isn’t adding to an existing formulation, many skin care specialists would argue this is the best approach. There are many instances in which layering formulations does enhance benefits. For example, a product that contains an acid may help other products layered on top of it work more effectively if applied first. Many professionals recommend applying lighter formulas first, like serums, followed by heavier products, such as creams. If layered properly, the formulations can provide the widest variety of benefits for the skin, while not impacting the activity of the ingredients.

However, Dr. Thornfeldt notes that some types of ingredients can counteract each other when layered. For example, layering Alpha Hydroxy Acids or Benzoyl Peroxide with the Epionce MelanoLyte Skin Brightening System will damage the functionality and compromise results. For this reason, he recommends utilizing products from one skin care line that have been specifically created to work synergistically together for optimal results.

How and Why to Layer Epionce: Get the best aesthetic results from your daily regimen

The Basics: As a general easy-to-remember rule to Epionce layering, a Renewal Facial product (or sunscreen if AM) should always be the last step in your regimen. Never put on an Epionce Lytic or MelanoLyte treatment product after a Renewal; you will not be receiving optimal benefit in the skin.

Here are some additional Epionce layering basics:

Layering Lytics + Renewals

The 5 minute rule: in order for a Lytic treatment product to do its job – clean out your pores – it needs at least 5-7 minutes to purge any impurities before a Renewal application. Since a Renewal is formulated to renew and fortify the skin, putting it on too soon after a Lytic means you are not getting optimal benefit from either products.

Our suggestion: apply your Lytic for skin type, brush your teeth, then apply your Renewal for skin type.

Lytic Tx

Renewal Facial Lotion

Layering the MelanoLyte Skin Brightening System

The MelanoLyte Skin Brightening System contains two products that have been expertly formulated to work together: MelanoLyte Pigment Perfection Serum and MelanoLyte Tx. For best results, apply MelanoLyte Tx in the AM and PM to clean skin. In the PM, before your application of MelanoLyte Tx, apply MelanoLyte Pigment Perfection Serum. Follow with Intensive Nourishing Cream, or other Renewal for skin type.

PM: MelanoLyte Pigment Perfection Serum

AM: MelanoLyte Tx

Using an Anti-Aging Serum

Since vitamin-rich Epionce Intense Defense Serum is a lighter-weight formula, like most serums, it is best to apply before your Renewal for skin type. Applying a Renewal afterward will help boost the anti-aging benefits of vitamins A, B, C, D, and E that are formulated into the serum.

Intense Defense Serum

Regimen Questions? Talk to your Epionce Skin Care Expert to get a tailored regimen specific to your needs and aesthetic goals.

Learn more


Further Reading

All About The Eyes

Why You Should Be Wearing SPF Year-Round

Epionce Essentials for the Busy Bee

What is Double Cleansing?