Treatment. It’s what everyone wants from their skincare routine--one or more add-on steps that provide clearer, healthier skin. Treatment products are made to target various ailments through a wide variety of potent ingredients and formulations. This step is usually where you’ll see the difference between skin that’s simply cleansed and skin that really glows.
However, an unlimited number of treatment options can sometimes lead to a frustrating trial-and-error process of finding the right ones for your skin. It's easy to assume that using a bunch of treatments all at once will do wonders, yet that’s rarely the case.
So, let’s start at the basics. What types of treatment products are there and how should you use them? A good skincare routine layers on products from lightest consistency to heaviest, and focuses on one skin "issue" at a time.
Treatments are available in three main forms:
Essences boost hydration in the skin. Rich in minerals and antioxidants, essences are used to strengthen the skin’s barrier, nourish the skin, and provide a long-lasting, hydrated glow. They're the lightest of the treatments, so if you’re using multiple treatment products (which you can do), they should be used first.
Serums, the most well-known type of treatment, are a concentration of active ingredients. They're used to target and treat specific skin issues (like hyperpigmentation, dry skin, or acne), and are jam-packed with ingredients to do so. They’re typically a little more viscous and heavier than essences.
Serums provide boosts of specific ingredients, like this soothing relief serum for irritated skin, this vitamin-rich oil, this lightweight skin immunity booster, or this antioxidant powerhouse for brighter skin.
Ampoules are concentrated versions of serums. They work like a wellness shot for the skin, providing intense relief for skin problems. Like serums, ampoules target skin areas with even more active ingredients. Because they are highly concentrated, a little goes a long way.
Ampoules generally focus on one main ingredient in order to maximize its benefits, which makes it easier to choose which ampoule is good for your specific skin needs. The options vary widely, from this Black Bee propolis ampoule, to this Centella asiatica-rich one, to this Vitamin C Mellight booster!
On top of essences, serums, and ampoules, there are also more specialized treatment products. These include classic spot treatments from Cosrx or Dr. Ceuracle, and product sets for targeting issues like pigmentation or dark spots. There are even overnight or morning masks that give your skin some much needed rest and rejuvenation. No matter what your specific skin needs are, there are assuredly treatment products out there for you!