I’ve never liked doing math. But as an adult, I’ve come to appreciate doing certain kinds of equations. As in: Peanut butter plus bananas. Turmeric plus black pepper. Matcha plus oat milk. My favorite kinda math of all time, though? Skin-care equations.
Some things are just better together and the same goes for your beauty products. I’m gonna go out on a limb and say you’re probably already doing skin-care equations on your face each and every day, but there are very specific ones you should pay close attention to—and perhaps incorporate into the beautiful mathwork done on your skin.
To help come up with the magical formulas—those that consist of two skin-care ingredients that simply work better together—I asked the skin gurus for guidance. Keep scrolling for the skin-care equations you should know about.
Turmeric + licorice
Turmeric goes with black pepper for better absorption internally—but its skin-care BFF is licorice root extract. “Turmeric and licorice are superfoods that combine a powerhouse of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties with a calming, pampering, oil-balancing, and skin-brightening result,” says Michaella Bolder, celebrity facialist. So they’re particularly good if you’re dealing with hyperpigmentation.
Retinol + AHA or BHA
Into strong actives? If you’re the kinda person who’s using retinol on the reg, facialist Cara Peloso from CAP Beauty says that adding an alpha-hydroxy acids (AHA) or beta-hydroxy acids (BHA), both of which are chemical exfoliants, into your routine will give your skin a boost. “If you have been using retinol for some time and your skin tolerates it well, you can apply it over an AHA or BHA serum a few nights a week to increase the effectiveness of both ingredients.”
Niacinamide + vitamin C
This equation’s especially good for your skin’s protective barrier. “Niacinamide, which is vitamin B3, strengthens the immunity of the skin, refines pore size, diminishes fine lines, and brightens the skin,” says Peloso. “Couple this with a vitamin C, which is a powerful antioxidant and also improves collagen synthesis for younger-looking skin, and you have a dynamic duo for glowing skin.”
Hyaluronic acid + B5
Hyaluronic acid’s a moisturizing MVP on its own, but if you pair it with B5—AKA the humectant panthenol—the duo turns into a seriously hydrating pair. “Hyaluronic plus B5 as we already know give our skin a superb water boost,” says Bolder. “When blended, along with a dose of your daily moisturizer, you’re giving your skin a double shot of hydration and moisture. I use these two every single day.” The best type of math indeed.
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