You're always careful about what you put on your skin, but how much you actually use of your fave product is equally as important. Follow these pro tips from Dove Dermatologist Dr. Alicia Barba to get the most out of your products, and save money too.
We've broken down each product amount into candy sizes, so it's super easy to eyeball exactly how much you should use.
Via Katja Cho
1. Face serum. You might use serum for everything from clearing blemishes to giving your skin a little extra moisture. It's a pretty light product so while you probably won't use too much, it can be a bit pricey, so half a pump (approximately the size of two nerds) is really all you need. Repeat this twice per day.
2. Day face lotion. During the winter months, you will likely need more lotion than in the summer, says Dr. Barba. Use a full pump, or approximately the size of a Hershey kiss, twice a day if your skin is feeling dry, and half that amount in the summer when there's more humidity in the air. But if your day moisturizer has an active ingredient such as salicylic acid, you're better off starting with half a pump (or Hershey Kiss) and working your way up to more product. "It all depends on how your skin tolerates it," adds Dr. Barba.
3. Night cream. You can slather on lotion a little heavier at night since you'll be repairing your skin. Spread a mini candy bar-sized amount on your face and neck, and even on your hands to wake up with soft skin.
4. Sunscreen. Dr. Barba says most people really don't use enough sunscreen, and definitely don't reapply it as often as they should. "In general, you are better off if you apply more rather than less," she explains. If you're going to be outside in the sun, use a Hershey kiss-size amount all over your face, up to the hair line, on your nose, lips, under the nose, top of ears and the space between the nose and upper lips. If you spend most of your time indoors, it's fine to wear makeup with SPF built into it.
5. Under-eye cream. Nope, it's not just for wrinkles. Eye cream can help you look more awake after an all-night study session. But you just need a very small amount under each eye. "The under-eye area is small and the skin is very delicate," explains Dr. Barba. If your cream is in a jar, use a clean finger to collect a size close to that of a piece of a candy corn. Dab the product under each eye, tapping the product while working outwards, and up the upper eye lid. Be very gentle! "The upper eye lids can get sensitive so stop if you experience excessive dryness, irritation, or redness," adds Dr. Barba. If your eye cream comes in a pump, one pump is about equal to that candy-corn size you should use.
6. Cleanser. To wash your face in the morning, Dr. Barba recommends using a very gentle cleanser that won't dry out your skin. At night, use a foaming cleanser that removes all your makeup, and also gently exfoliates dead skin cells so that other products (like lotion and serum) can penetrate better. One pump, or the size of a mini candy bar, of each will do the trick.
7. Acne spot treatment. With a Q-Tip, apply an M&M-sized amount of spot treatment, just enough to cover the acne bump. Do your best to avoid the normal skin on the sides of the bump. More is not better when it comes to acne treatment. "I have seen burns and excessive peeling of the skin from using too much product, or burns from a product that was left on too long," warns Dr. Barba.
8. Exfoliating scrub. You can definitely over-exfoliate, especially if your skin tends to get dried out by acne treatments. Use a Hershey Kiss-sized amount only once or twice a week, and always moisturize after. "If your moisturizer stings after exfoliating, you have scrubbed too hard," adds Dr. Barba.
Originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com