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Face Time With Melanie SImon:

Skin Care
Layering 101

The electrical esthetician demonstrates how to pile on products like a pro.

ZIIP Beauty founder and electrical esthetician Melanie Simon is perpetually radiant. She’s even made her appointment-only magic available for at-home use with her palm-size ZIIP Nano Current Skincare Device, a sleek, user-friendly contraption that links up to an iPhone app targeting dry skin, signs of aging, and acne. In her weekly video series, the skin care guru gives it to you straight up (a phrase she constantly employs), revealing her anti-aging techniques and go-to products.

Fact: How you apply skin care can make or break your results. But with an arsenal filled with serums, cleansers, toners, creams, and finishing fluid, deducing the right order of application can seem as enigmatic as the old chicken and the egg query. So, which product comes first? “This is a question I get all the time,” says Simon when we inquire about the best process, “let’s just break it down once and for all, and get it straight.”

Skin Care
Layering 101

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“It’s almost always thinnest to thickest because if you think about it, you don’t want a tiny molecule on top of a giant molecule because there’s no way it can penetrate through that [larger] molecule,” says Simon who starts with her cleanser. For a cleanser with a kick (thanks to lactic acid), she favors Koh Gen Do Cleansing Spa Water; alternatively, Simon suggests Bioderma Sensibio H2O for a cleaner formula. Her tip: use gauze, not cotton. And keep wiping until that gauze is clean.

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Next step is your toner, again with gauze. “Cotton pads steal the product, and you’ll notice you’re flying through the product,” advises Simon who reaches for Biologique Recherche Lotion P50 1970. Avoiding your orbital sockets, press the gauze saturated with toner against crows feet, wherever your pores are large and your forehead. “You’re going to let that set because it’s a certain pH,” Simon notes, “60 seconds is a good rule of thumb.”

BIOLOGIQUE RECHERCHE

LOTION P50 1970

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Now comes your meat and potatoes aka your serum. For Simon, that’s Biologique Recherche’s Serum A-Glyca and Serum Elastine Pure. If you’re up to the task of following Simon’s routine at length, she suggests you “look for serums that are water weight, that are very thin.” Apply your serum under the lash line, eyelid, face, and neck, basically everywhere. To prep for a big event or build a “second skin” as Simon calls it, she suggests taking it up a notch with more serums. On her list: Melanie Simon Serum C and Dr. Barbara Sturm Hyaluronic Serum. Wait one minute before moving onto the next step.

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Then, its time to follow up with moisturizer. “You don’t need much after you’ve been doing all this layering,” says Simon as she applies Bioderma Hydrabio Cream. Slather it on your neck, moving up to your cheeks, and avoiding your orbital area and forehead.

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It’s time to grab your eye cream, specifically Susanne Kaufmann Eye Cream Line A if you’re really aiming to acquire Simon-esque skin. Simon has explicit instructions when it comes to application, “Never swipe! Always dab! When you’re dabbing you’re pushing the [product] into [your] wrinkle, and  you’re also dabbing those lymph nodes to help water drain out.” Noted.

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The final step is finishing fluid, a rare exception to Simon’s thinnest-to-thickest rule. As she introduces Biologique Recherche Fluide VIP 02 and Tatcha Dewy Skin Mist into the routine she tells us that the fluid is, “suppose to live on top of the skin, it’s creating a shield.” To lock in your products, spray the formula into your hands and press it all over your face, including the area around your eyes. Come AM, grab the same finishing fluid and your eye cream for a morning boost.