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How Long Does it Take for Skincare Products to Work?
Have you ever found yourself with a new skincare product and after trying it out, you’re sitting there wishing that you can see the results of it right at that moment? Well, you’re not alone! We’ve all been there whenever we get our hands on new beauty items, especially with skin care that promises to solve certain issues that we experience.
We’re only setting ourselves up for disappointment if we expect instant gratification from skin care. There’s no skincare product out there that can display results in a snap of a finger — and honestly, that’s a good thing. Our skin needs all the time, care, and attention for it to show any change or improvement. According to board-certified dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, “Skincare is a marathon, not a sprint,” meaning it takes a while for these skincare products to display results and benefits.
How Long Does a Skincare Product Take To Work?
There’s really no one answer to this, no matter how hard you search for it. According to dermatologists, it takes about a month in general to see any kind of change to your skin. Although, if you want to see the full effects, you should follow a skincare regimen for at least three months. There are some skincare products that take effect instantly — some take about two weeks,. But as a general rule, a four to six-week window is the best as it allows the skin cells to have a full turnover.
We’ve listed down some commonly used skincare products and noted each of their waiting periods to see how long it’ll take for them to work.
Even if it’s advised to wash your face with a cleanser twice a day, it doesn’t actually stay long enough for it to transform your skin in a flash. Sure, a cleanser does clean your skin and gets rid of traces of makeup, impurities, dirt, and grim accumulated throughout the day. However, if you’re someone who washes your face to target specific issues such as dryness, dullness, and acne, it will take about 30 days for your skin to adjust to your cleanser and display an improvement.
Now this is one product where you’ll see instant results on your skin! Having a moisturizer in your routine is incredibly important, whether you’re experiencing dryness, oiliness, or breakouts. Moisturizers are packed with hyaluronic acid, ceramides, and glycerin, giving the skin an instant boost of hydration and an added protection to the skin barrier. If you use a moisturizer consistently for about 2 weeks, you’ll be able to see its full results, resulting in plumper, softer skin.
When it comes to reducing acne scars, fine lines, and anti-aging claims in general, retinol is one’s best friend. Peeling may start in as little as a week once you start using retinol however, it will usually take a minimum of 4 weeks to as long as 3 months of consistent use to see its full results. Vitamin C products also fall in this category. It takes them a while as these active ingredients penetrate through the skin’s keratin layer (outer layer) and through the skin wall. Once they fully take effect, you’ll see smoother, younger skin.
Serums are a little tricky as they usually come in different formulas and the waiting game for a serum to work differs, depending on what it’s supposed to do. Serums contain active ingredients that target specific issues such as brightening, anti-aging, pimple treating, and the like. It takes about 6 to 8 weeks or a little more for serums to work on the skin.
Here’s another tricky skincare product that varies when it comes to seeing results. A lot of over-the-counter products can take up 2 to 3 months of regular use. For acne products that are prescribed by a dermatologist, it’ll only take about half a month or two to see the results. However, it all depends on whether your acne is severe or not. Less acne means a shorter waiting time in seeing improvement.
Expecting results from your skincare products truly do take some time. If patience is something that you find you don’t have enough of, there are still ways to boost the efficiency of your beauty products. You can add an exfoliating step in your regimen, allowing your skin to better absorb most ingredients. There’s also the matter of order when it comes to a skincare routine. Products with a light formulation should be applied first, and heavier-formulated products can come after that.
One other important matter to keep in mind is that the efficiency and time needed for a product to work depends on its formulation and ingredients. Products with active ingredients, like vitamin C and vitamin A, need more time to produce results as they work on a more cellular level, such as increasing collagen production.
Also, one must be aware of how your skincare products may be interacting with each other. It’s possible that you’re accidentally canceling out your products, rendering them to be less effective. Always space out the application of your skincare items, especially if you’ve just acquired something new.
Additionally, something that’s worth noting is that while products can take a lot of time to work, it’s always best to do a patch test beforehand to see how your skin reacts to a product, especially if you’re about to use it for the first time. A patch test can be an absolute lifesaver as you’ll be able to see a sign and tell right away if you’ll have an allergic reaction to it or not.
Some products may give you a bit of a tingling sensation, especially with actives. However, do remember that if you experience breakouts, redness, rashes, and more along with the tingling sensation, it’s best to stop using a product. If you happen to experience a severe case, it’s always best to seek a dermatologist.
How Do You Know If Your Skincare Routine Is Working?
Now that you have an idea of how long it takes a skincare product to work, it’s time to figure out how to know if your routine is actually working on your skin. Similar to what we stated in the beginning of this article, there’s really no one way to tell if it’s working. The most basic sign to know if your routine is effective is if your skin is experiencing the promise and claims of the product you’re using.
For example, if you’re using a product that’s supposed to fade dark marks, then you should see your spots lightening. If you’re using a product that promises to reduce redness, then you should see a more even skin tone. If it’s a product that claims to lessen the appearance of fine lines, then you should see smoother, clearer skin. It’s always best to know the main ingredient of a product and which issue it can solve so that you can be sure of the results.
We hope our article was able to help you out! When it comes to the efficiency and results of beauty products and a skincare routine, it’s best to remember that consistency is the key. You can’t expect results if you don’t use the product in a regular manner. Unless you experience terrible skin reactions such as intense stinging, redness, and the like, it’s always good to commit to a product and see whether or not the results live up to the claims.
Patience is an absolute virtue, and good things come to those who wait. And well, if it ends up that your skincare product become a dud for you, you can always purchase another one to try and wait out.
What about you, what’s your experience with waiting on the results of your skin care products? Share it with us in the comments!
How long does it take for skin to clear up?
Breakouts, pimples, bumps – nothing is more frustrating than having these pop up on your face unexpectedly. With the right skin care routine and the right zit-clearing products, it can take about 4 to 6 weeks for your skin to clear up from pimples or inflammation. In severe cases, it can even take more than that. Your skin cells need some time to regenerate, from the bottom of the skin all the way to the top, and this process takes about 4 to 6 weeks. It bears reiterating that patience and consistency in doing your routine can help a lot in having the skin clear up.
For more skincare tips, you can check out our article on creating a simple skincare routine.
Ira Arellano graduated with a degree in Multimedia Arts from the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde. When she’s not busy writing, Ira uses her remaining free time fawning over groups with too many members, reading three books simultaneously, crying over animated shows and fictional people, and being salty over her lack of gacha luck.