Killer Component Combinations for Maximum Results

When combined effectively, these “killer component combinations” can amplify each other’s benefits, targeting multiple skin concerns simultaneously for maximum results. Whether you’re looking to brighten, hydrate, or fight signs of aging, understanding which ingredients work best together is key to optimizing your skincare routine. Dive into these powerful pairings and unlock your skin’s potential.

Niacinamide + Salicylic Acid

Achieve radiant, less oily skin with clear pores. They can be in one product or applied one after the other. Apply the salicylic acid product first, then follow with niacinamide.


  • Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant (as your first step)
  • The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% (follow up)

Vitamin C + E

This combo provides radiant, hydrated skin and excellent antioxidant protection. They can be combined in one product or layered on top of each other.


  • SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic (L-Ascorbic Acid (15%) + Alpha-Tocopherol (1%))

Vitamin C + Ferulic Acid

Offers super hydration and skin restoration. Adding Vitamin E enhances brightness, evens out skin tone, and improves firmness. Can be applied together.


  • Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum (L-Ascorbic Acid (15%) + Ferulic Acid + Vitamin E (Tocopherol) + Pumpkin Ferment Extract + Pomegranate Enzyme)
  • Timeless Skin Care 20% Vitamin C + E + Ferulic Acid Serum (L-Ascorbic Acid (20%) + Vitamin E (Tocopherol) + Ferulic Acid + Hyaluronic Acid)

Vitamin C + Niacinamide

Helps lighten dark spots, and makes the skin more hydrated and firm. Can be applied together.


  • Sunday Riley CEO 15% Vitamin C Brightening Serum

Niacinamide + Zinc

Reduces inflammation and irritation in acne-prone skin. Best when both ingredients are in the same product.


  • The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%

Retinol + Vitamin C

For double the radiance and firmness. Use retinol at night and vitamin C in the morning. Introduce vitamin C only after your skin has adapted to retinol to avoid irritation.


  • Sunday Riley C.E.O. Glow Vitamin C + Turmeric Face Oil (AM routine)
  • Roc Retinol Correxion Deep Wrinkle Night Cream (PM routine)

Antioxidants + Sunscreen

Antioxidants stabilize sunscreen and protect against oxidative stress (as my dermatologist said, you’ll see the benefits in 20 years!). Apply antioxidants in the form of serum/cream first, wait 15-20 minutes, then apply SPF.


  • SkinCeuticals Phloretin CF (as your first step)
  • Supergoop! Unseen Sunscreen SPF 40 (follow up)

Retinol + Peptides

More noticeable skin rejuvenation in terms of tone and firmness.


  • Drunk Elephant A-Passioni Retinol Cream

Emollients (like Ceramides) + AHA/BHA Acids or Vitamin C or Retinoids

Help support the skin during the adjustment period to high concentrations of these actives.


  • CeraVe SA Lotion for Rough & Bumpy Skin (Salicylic Acid (BHA) + Lactic Acid (AHA) + Ceramides (1, 3, 6-II) + Niacinamide)
  • CeraVe Skin Renewing Vitamin C Serum (Vitamin C (10% L-Ascorbic Acid) + Ceramides (1, 3, 6-II) + Vitamin B5 (Panthenol) + Hyaluronic Acid)
  • CeraVe Skin Renewing Retinol Serum (Encapsulated Retinol + Ceramides (1, 3, 6-II) + Niacinamide + Hyaluronic Acid)
  • CeraVe Moisturizing Cream (for ceramides only)
  • Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin Cream (for ceramides only)

By combining these powerful ingredients in your skincare routine, you can achieve targeted results and optimize the effectiveness of each product.