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How to Apply Face Serums With a Dropper

There’s a right way to use and care for squeeze droppers. Learn how to maximize the efficacy of your favorite face serums when using a dropper.

Updated October 30, 2021 by Amanda Dixon

Serum with Dropper

Facial serums are lightweight hydrators that contain a high concentration of active ingredients. Face serums are often formulated to target specific skin concerns such as brightness, hydration, redness, acne, fine lines, or wrinkles. Thinner than face creams, serums are perfect for skin care layering and absorb deep into the skin. 


Many serums are packaged with a squeeze dropper. While this allows for easy application, the downside is that serum droppers allow air to enter into the bottle, causing the product inside to oxidize. It is therefore important to squeeze the air out of the dropper before placing the dropper back into the serum bottle. 


The squeeze dropper can reduce your serum’s efficacy if you don’t squeeze the air out. Squeezing the dropper in the bottle mixes bubbles of oxygen into your serum, accelerating the oxygenation process. 


To apply a facial serum with a dropper follow these three steps:


Step 1: Before applying a face serum, cleanse your skin with a face wash or exfoliator. It’s important to start with a clean base.


Step 2: Apply 1-2 drops of the facial serum to each section of your cleansed face. First, apply the drops to your finger and then rub the serum onto your cheeks, forehead, and chin area. The serum dropper should not be placed directly onto the skin! Pat the serum into the skin using upward motions. Resist the temptation to rub the serum in; patting is gentler on the skin and allows for the formula to fully absorb.  


Step 3: Lastly, tap gently on the skin with your fingertips. This will aid with the serum’s absorption. Wait a minute before following up with a moisturizing facial cream. 


When Should You Apply Face Serums? 

Facial serums can be applied morning and evening on a cleansed face and neck, before applying facial creams. For those with an oily skin type, a serum can be applied without using a moisturizer. 



Why You Shouldn’t Touch a Serum Dropper To Your Face

Touching the serum dropper’s tip directly to your face can cause bacteria from the tip to end up in the product. The dropper should never come in direct contact with your face or hands.



How Do You Clean a Serum Dropper? 

To sanitize a serum dropper, clean it with soap and water. To disinfect it, place the glass part of the dropper in boiling water for at least 10 minutes. Remove with tongs and allow to air dry on a clean towel.


Top Rated Face Serums With a Dropper

 A few of our favorite facial serums with a dropper include:


  • Vintner’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum: A luxurious and hydrating facial serum,  Vintner’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum™ is formulated with plant-based botanicals to nourish the skin and restore moisture. Infused with Vintner’s Daughter’s Phyto Radiance Infusion™, active ingredients help brighten the skin and boost radiance. 

  • Caudalie’s Vinoperfect Radiance Serum Complexion Correcting: A highly concentrated, oil-free serum, the Vinoperfect Radiance Serum Complexion Correction from Caudalie visibly helps reduce discoloration and dark spots while brightening and hydrating the skin. 

  • Dr. Dennis Gross Clinical Grade IPL Dark Spot Correcting Serum: A potent corrective serum, the Clinical Grade IPL Dark Spot Correcting Serum from Dr. Dennis Gross helps fade the appearance of dark spots, hyperpigmentation,  and discoloration. Formulated with Lactic, Kojic, and L-ascorbic Acid, this serum helps smooth, illuminate, and protect the skin from environmental aggressors. 


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