How Long Does Moisturizer Take to Absorb?




Okay, so you’re layering your skincare products and you’re wondering – how long does moisturizer take to absorb?

I wish I could give you a hard and fast answer, but . . . it depends.

It takes longer for moisturizer to be absorbed fully than it does for moisturizer to absorb into the deeper layers of your skin.

What do skincare experts say: how long does it take lotion to absorb?

Tatcha Dewy Skin Cream with BowTiedFawn branding

Dermatologists recommend 1-2 minutes for products to absorb to the point that you can’t see them anymore.

Additionally, absorption times can run from half an hour to two hours for your skin care products to fully absorb.

Improving How Your Skin Absorbs Moisturizer

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Moisturizers work optimally as part of your daily skincare routine and improve your skin’s barrier function.

A general rule is that you can reduce the absorption time of skincare products by applying your moisturizer to damp skin instead of dry skin.

You don’t want to wait for your skin to dry completely! Just use a gentle massaging motion until the water and your moisturizer are absorbed fully.

Frequently Asked Questions

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How long should you wait to apply moisturizer after serum?

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My general rule of thumb for any skincare product is, when in doubt, just give it 1-2 minutes. This goes for serums with active ingredients, hyaluronic acid, or anything else.

Just make sure you don’t forget to follow up with a moisturizer to avoid any sort of over exfoliation.

Do you have to wait if you don’t want to?

Nope! Your skincare routine is your own.

If you don’t want to bother waiting, don’t. What’s best for your lifestyle and skin varies from other people.

I’m not exactly the picture perfect representation of a skincare enthusiast anyways. Some nights I just slap on some moisturizer after adapalene and head to bed.

When is the best time to apply facial moisturizer?

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General rule of thumb is to moisturize at least once per day, but I prefer twice.

Plus, daytime requires some extra care. You may want to wear a lighter moisturizer and sunscreen for those longer periods through the day to maintain your protective barrier.

What is the right order to apply your skincare routine?

The order is always:

  1. Cleanser
  2. Toner or serum (optional)
  3. Wear moisturizer
  4. Wear sunscreen (morning only)

It takes time for different skin care products to absorb fully, but I wouldn’t bother getting too caught up in that.

It typically takes me five minutes in the morning and evening. Unless my skin is a bit freaked out, I stick to the basics.

Do you need jade rollers to get your products to absorb?

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Nope. Rose quartz rollers are unnecessary in skin care.

Your skin will absorb products by itself. That’s how your natural barrier works!

Some people like them for skin all around to encourage increased blood circulation and collagen production, but there isn’t a ton of evidence from an expert like a board certified dermatologist on this.

Does moisturizer clog pores?

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No, a good moisturizer should never clog pores. Regardless of your skin type:

  • Oily skin
  • Tired skin
  • Dry skin

You can benefit from moisturizer. For a good moisturizer with a gentle touch, check out other products like my Stratia Interface Review and Stratia Liquid Gold Review.

Can you apply vitamin C serum with moisturizers?

Stratia C+C Serum with BowTiedFawn branding

Vitamin C works best on dry skin unless otherwise stated on the bottle. Use gentle massaging motions or a circular motion to rub in the skincare product. If you’re looking for a good one, check out my Stratia C+C Serum Review.

Then apply moisturizer.

You can also apply sunscreen after if you like.

When you finally decide to it's time to improve your health and appearance, you need to sign up for my Substack below. Find specific skin routines and protocols in My Roadmap or start with my Basic Skincare Guide.

Also, you should be following my other socials for free skincare, health, and beauty content daily:

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