May 17, 2015

Q&A: Should products be applied liberally or sparingly?

Q: Do you think there's a difference in results between applying serums liberally vs. sparingly?

A: With serums, you need to deliver enough of the ingredients to the skin to see the results you want, so liberally would be better than sparingly. Most of the time you should just apply as directed by the label, though. Manufacturers base their dosing instructions on both efficacy and product lifespan (meaning how long it will take you to use up a product--usually about 2-3 months). If you apply too little, you'll extend the lifespan of the product, but may not get the full benefits. If you apply too much, you may hit a ceiling on how much extra benefit there is and just waste product. Some products, like the C15, have dosage directions that are a bit conservative and extend the lifespan longer than the shelf-life, but they're the exception to the rule. 

If you can afford to buy a high-quality serum and apply a little more than the label recommends, that's fine. But rather than buy a too-expensive serum and under-apply it to extend its life as long as possible, you'd be better off buying a serum in your real budget--something you can afford to repurchase every few months--and apply it as directed. Consistency is always the best investment. 

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