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How long will it take to see results from a new skincare routine?

06.05.2022 | Skincare

Investing in skincare (whether it’s money or time) means putting your hope and faithtrust into products to really make a difference to skin. But how long should you give them to make a difference?

The important thing to note here is that it hugely varies depending on which ingredient you are looking at. Some ingredients, for example, will have more of an instant effect, such as those that brighten and add radiance. Others can take longer, and more time to make a real impact. 

Either way, all products work over time and tend to take between weeks and months to make visible improvements, regardless of whether they offer instant results on the skin’s surface, such as brightening and illuminating. It’s also crucial to note that consistency and patience is key; to see real results with any skincare product, you should use it regularly and for a good period of time. Attempt not to introduce too many different products into your routine at once, and give your new formulations a chance to really get to work effectively. This also allows you to monitor the progress of a product more easily.  

In general, here at INKEY we recommend continuing to use something new for around six weeks at a minimum, before deciding whether a product is ‘working’ for you. That said, you should introduce certain ingredients (such as retinol and exfoliating AHAs and BHAs) slowly and always patch test first for added safety. 

You could experience a period of ‘purging’ when using a new active, which you may need to persevere with until the six week point, at which you should discontinue use and seek medical advice as the product may have done damage to the skin barrier. This said, if any product causes an instant reaction, you should stop using it immediately. Patch testing prior to use can help to avoid unexpected reactions when introducing new products. 

So, which products work right away, and which need a little more patience? 

In general, ingredients such as Hyaluronic Acid Serum and 15% Vitamin C + EGF Serum offer an instant glow-up in terms of brightening and illuminating, and making skin feel and look more quenched and healthy. Other INKEY brightening favourites such as the Symbright Moisturizer and Brighten-i Eye Cream will also give instant gratification. 

However, the more you use these products, the more you will get from them in the long term. For example, although Hyaluronic Acid may work within minutes to plump skin, it takes around a couple of months in general to drastically improve hydration levels and skin condition. Vitamin C may instantly brighten, but it should be used for around three months to begin to target concerns such as hyperpigmentation. 

More targeted treatments such as Retinol Serum, Niacinamide Serum and Tranexamic Acid Serum will take longer to have an impact on skin. In general, expect to begin seeing results at between six and twelve weeks, but remember that ingredients like retinol may take up to around six months to truly start showing visible improvements, as they structurally change skin in a more impactful way. 

Use our Recipe Builder to create your perfect skincare routine, designed for all your specific needs and concerns. 

Photo of Written by one of our askINKEY skincare advisors

Written by one of our askINKEY skincare advisors

Our askINKEY team are available on our live chat. A friendly bunch, all experts with deep product knowledge, ready to make skincare as simple as possible. Whether you are an ingredient expert or starting your journey, no question is too big or too small, no judgement or jargon, we’re here to help and be part of your journey.