By Victoria Moorhouse
Feb 22, 2019 @ 9:00 am
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You could spend thousands of dollars on the best skincare products ever made, but if you don't apply them in the right order, you're not going to reap the glow-boosting, wrinkle-reducing benefits. It's a pretty hard and fast rule, but when to apply each product still happens to be one of the most confusing beauty topics for consumers. In fact, there's one question that continuously pops up on our radar that proves it: Does sunscreen go on before or after moisturizer?

When you have five bottles of nearly identical white cream in front of you, understandably, things can get a little puzzling, so we went to a dermatologist to get the lowdown on exactly where sunscreen falls when you're applying your skincare and your makeup.

"SPF is the last thing that goes on during your skincare routine," explains board-certified dermatologist, Dr. Shari Sperling.

First, she recommends applying any topical medications or prescriptions, then moving to your serums and moisturizers. Finally, your sunscreen (which Dr. Sperling says should have an SPF 30 or higher), seals the deal as the very last step in your skincare routine, as it acts as a shield from the sun.

But this wasn't the most surprising sunscreen query we stumbled upon. Apparently, readers are wondering: Does sunscreen go on before or after makeup?

"Yes, you can apply your makeup on top of sunscreen," confirms board-certified dermatologist Dr. Shari Sperling. "Cosmetically, you’re not going to want to put a thick, white sunscreen cream over your makeup." And as long as you're applying an SPF 30 or higher before your foundation, Dr. Sperling says you're still getting the same amount of protection.

Roy Rochlin/Getty Images

Finally, even if you have makeup on, if you're going to be outside a lot or in the sun, yes, you still need to reapply SPF.

This is where it gets tricky. You can either throw your hands in the air and apply that liquid SPF over your makeup, or, if messing up that contour isn't an option, you can also brush on a powder-based SPF product, like Supergoop! Invincible Setting Powder SPF 45 or Colorescience Sunforgettable Brush-On Sunscreen SPF 30.

For all your other skincare order burning Q's, click here.