How long does it take for skincare products to work

How long does it take for skincare products to work

It usually takes 28 - 30 days (4 weeks) for you to start seeing results this is because our skin goes through a cycle in which the skin cell appears, matures, dies, & sheds. After 28 days, all skin cells on the surface "will have had a chance to try the effectiveness (or lack thereof) of the product in question”. 

For products like cleansers, creams/moisturizers, & spot treatments they take up to 2 weeks, products that treat acne or hyperpigmentation usually take longer: 4 to 8 weeks. Treatment like retinoids or peptides takes up to 3 months because they work on a genetic level. 


No matter what some products just don’t work well for our skin type. When applying a product for the first time if you notice any sting, burning sensation, or redness that lasts for more than a few minutes there’s no need to wait for 28 days, discard it right away before you harm your skin. 

The tricky part is that an allergic reaction doesn’t always mean that product isn’t going to work for you ever. Some ingredients react differently when mixed with others. Maybe the product that you’re testing contains an ingredient that doesn’t sit well with ingredients from another product. Also don’t over-exfoliate because your can harm your protective barrier which in turn will make your skin more sensitive to ingredients. 

Before discarding a new product make sure to go over your routine and check if you need to eliminate another product that contains a specific ingredient. 

If you want to start a new routine or introduce new products to it make sure to test one product at a time at least every 2 weeks to give a bit of time for your skin to adjust to the product. 


1. Cleanser = 24 hours to 30 days (1month)

  If after cleansing, your skin still feels dirty or tight & dry it means the cleanser is upsetting your protective barrier so ditch it!

2. Exfoliators: 

a. Physical (the ones with small particles that manually removes dead skin cells) = straight away

b. Chemical (the ones that use acids like glycolic or salicylic to break down a type of glue that keeps the dead cells together) = 2 days to 1 month

3. Moisturizers (meaning every product which function is to hydrate and moisturize the skin. This includes creams, serums, essences, etc.) = 1 to 2 days

Moisturizing your skin makes it way softer and plump meaning your fine lines & wrinkles diminish. 

4. Treatments: 

a. Acne Treatment = 1 week to 1.5 months 

b. Spot Treatment = 1 week

c. Dark Spot (brighten) Treatment (this includes treatments for dark spots, freckles, etc.) if used both AM & PM = 2 months

d. Anti-aging Treatment = 3 months up to 1 year

There are also products that use powerful actives like retinol or vitamin C to promote collagen (a protein that’s in charge of keeping your skin firm & elastic) = they take at least 3 months

Most of these products use antioxidants to treat and prevent wrinkles. Antioxidants get rid of free radicals before they can damage your skin and give you wrinkles. They’re mostly used for prevention.

5. SPF = years

They prevent the damage that the sun (UVA, UVB) can cause in the long run in your skin. Even if it’s a snowy or rainy day & the sun is hidden USE SPF because UVA rays penetrate through clouds & even windows.

It’s scientifically proven that UV rays are the cause of up to 90% of dark spots, fine lines, & early wrinkles.

If you want to keep those wrinkles & dark spots away & PREVENT SKIN CANCER use SPF! 

Reminder: Choosing products with hyaluronic acid, ceramides, & glycerin help repair your skin barrier. 

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