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    16 Skincare Cheat Sheets That Are Actually Useful

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    1. For knowing when to toss products after opening:

    Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

    Two things to keep an especially close eye on? Acne treatments because their active ingredients lose effectiveness over time. And sunscreen, which can essentially go bad once its exposed to a temperature change.

    Read more: It's Time To Start Throwing Out The Makeup You've Had For Years

    2. For the order of operations:

    There are always exceptions, but a good general rule is remembering to apply your products from thinnest to thickest consistency.

    Read more: In What Order Do I Apply My Skin Care Products?

    3. And for how much — approximately — to use for each step:

    Less is (sometimes!) more.

    Read more: How Much Product You Really Need — A Guide

    4. For mornings when you need a streamlined skincare routine — before moving on to makeup:

    Don't forget the SPF too, though. ☀️

    Read more: Face Products & The Order of Application

    5. For understanding all things acid-related:

    AHAs and BHAs both act as mild exfoliants — but it's important to know the key differences between both.

    Read more: Everything You Need To Know About Acid Exfoliation

    6. Plus, a further breakdown of common ones:


    7. For product timelines and effectiveness:

    Shoutout to my fellow ~impatient~ people. 👋

    Read more: How Long Skincare Really Takes To Work

    8. For deciphering all those symbols on the packaging:

    Zoe Burnett / BuzzFeed

    9. For a useful primer on oils:

    Also, if you're not sure where to start with oils, here are several that our readers swear by.

    Read more: Glamour's Everything You Need To Know About Oils

    10. For diving into Korean-style skincare — and its famous 10-step routine:

    It's definitely not a quick routine, but after trying a K-Beauty regimen for a month straight, we actually loved the results.

    Read more: I Tried A Korean Skin Care Routine For A Month And This Is What Happened

    11. And for answering the inevitable "But what *is* that, though?" question when it comes to step #5:

    12. For that time of the month — and how it might affect your skin:

    13. And for suggestions on how to adjust your routine if you'd like:

    14. For all those power combos we keep hearing about:

    Some products are even more effective when paired together — while others should always stay separate.

    Read more: What To Know About Combining Skincare Products

    15. For the (sometimes surprising) culprits behind breakouts:

    (I'd also add: Wash your pillowcases and towels frequently!)

    Learn more at Cosmopolitan.

    16. And for your next DIY at-home spa day:

    What's the most useful skincare tip or product you swear by? Share it in the comments!