Let’s face it. If there’s an opportunity to multitask during the day and save a few precious minutes, most of us will gladly take it. Or so I thoroughly believe as a very busy person.

And skincare routines are no exception. A lot of people squeeze in cleansing or mud masks while showering to save time and keep the skincare routine in the bathroom.

But is this the right way to do it?

I’ve personally tried doing my skincare before showering, during, and after. I wanted to test what the results would be and made some interesting discoveries. I’ve also done a ton of research on the topic to check my theories on beauty treatments while you bathe. The reality is that the answer to the question should you do your skincare routine before or after а shower is not simple.

It depends on the type of cleansing products you use for your skincare routine.

I’ll share with you everything you need to know when it comes to your skincare routine before or after а shower.

Should you do your beauty routine before, during, or after showering?

In short, you can do all of the above and still get results.

Some parts of skincare can easily be done in the bath, despite the hot temperatures and the steam. Others, however, must be done before or after you wash.

For example, if you want to cleanse your face while showering, you’ll save time. There will be no need to waste effort and time on getting your sink area ready or getting your hair out of the way. Plus, the steam from the shower opens up your pores, which makes cleaning a whole lot easier.

However, hot water could damage your skin and can disrupt its protective barrier. It can also dehydrate the skin. Moreover, washing your face in the bath feels very comfortable and you could end up doing it for longer than needed. This may end up removing valuable oils from the surface of your skin.

If you choose to do your skincare after the shower, the positives are that no shampoo or conditioner will get on your face and you can use beauty products like moisturizer immediately after. However, this does mean that you’ll need to set aside some extra time for your skincare and you won’t enjoy the opportunity to clean your pores deep as they won’t be open from the steam.

Let’s look at the face products to use and skincare steps you can take before, during, and after showering.

What skincare steps to do before showering?

Some face masks

You’ll notice, as you keep reading the next sections, that face masks are complex.

There are types that can be used before, during, and after the shower.

It all comes down to what you’re trying to achieve, the type of ingredients in the mask, and your skin type.

For example, people with drier skin will see amazing results when applying a hydrating face mask before taking a shower. By doing so, more moisture from the mask and the shower will be sealed in, giving you better results.

What skincare products to use during your shower?

Some of the skincare products that you can safely use in the shower are the following:

Rinse off face masks

A lot of rinse-off face masks can be used in the shower, without you having to worry about the steam causing any trouble.

It’s important to know that exfoliants with chemicals like glycolic or lactic acid must be washed off your face with cold water. This allows the exfoliating process to stop and neutralize the formula. Washing them with hot water could irritate your skin.

Mud masks

Mud masks are messy.

This is why most people will benefit from doing them while taking a shower. It’s okay to do so and it’s even better if you apply the mask as you’re prepping for shower time. This will allow the mask to do its magic and you can rinse it off when showering.

However, make sure that you’re not washing it too early or getting water on it before you want to clean it off.

Cleansers and cleansing balms

You can easily get facial cleansing done while showering.

In fact, it gives you a great advantage as you can get all of the makeup and oils removed from the hairline and jawline – this is much harder over a sink.

It’s best to use your cleanser after you’ve shampooed to make sure that no residue is left on the skin from conditioners and shampoos. Some of the products you use for your hair could lead to clogged pores and breakouts, so washing your face after your hair can do wonders.

Makeup removals

It’s safe to remove your makeup while showering but I must note that if your makeup cleanser is oil-based, it could quickly break down because of all the steam. This is something to keep an eye out for, especially if you love a hot, steaming shower.

What skincare steps to do immediately after the shower?

Chemical exfoliants

I noted earlier that chemical exfoliants are a bit tricky and it’s best to avoid using them during the shower. This is because they must be removed with cold water and most of us aren’t comfortable with showering at low temperatures.

If you’re not a fan of stressing your body with dramatic temperature changes, use chemical exfoliants after showering, when the pores are nice and open and it’s easy for the product to penetrate deeper into the oily residues and the dirt.

Charcoal masks

Charcoal masks are great for cleaning your pores and restoring the structure of your skin. It’s best to take a shower, wash your face, and apply the mask after. They need to dry up and any steam from the shower may get in the way. Showering first makes it possible for your pores to expand and open up. This will guarantee a deeper cleaning experience and better results.

Sheet masks

Sheet masks are created as leave-on skincare products. The excess or remaining essence from the cloth penetrates the skin after you take the mask off and gently massage it.

For example, sleeping masks should be washed off in the morning after spending enough hours with them during the night to nourish the skin. Considering that they need time to do their magic, these types of products must always be applied after showering. If not, you won’t be able to enjoy all of the nourishing advantages that they offer.

Serums, essences, ampoules, toners

These products are designed to stay on the skin to perform their abilities. They’re not meant to be rinsed, therefore you should make sure that you’ve cleaned up and done the rest before you apply them.


The hot steam from the shower could be very dehydrating for our skin. This is why it’s vital to support it with moisturizer immediately after getting out of the shower. Moisturizers are perfectly absorbed by damp skin and will collect and store extra moisture. You can apply them immediately after a shower, or after your other thinner skincare products.

Skincare routine for people who shower in the morning

Morning skincare routine before and after shower

People who shower in the morning before leaving the house or getting to work should consider two things:

  • You want to get the face ready for makeup;
  • You want to prepare the face for daily activities, exposure to environmental stressors, and more.

Having said that here’s a useful skincare routine:
If you have a sleeping mask on, carefully wash it off with cold water before you jump in the shower. If not, clean the face with a cleanser during the shower.
Once you’re ready with the shower, apply toner as a prep step for what follows next. Use your serums and add moisturizer. Finally, apply sun protection to shield the face from harmful UV lights.

Skincare routine for people who shower in the evening

Evening skincare routine before and after shower

On the other hand, if you’re someone who showers in the evening, your skincare routine aims to:

  • Remove any makeup and dirt from daily activities;
  • Allow the face to rest and absorb valuable nutrients.

A great routine for your skin, in this case, is to start by removing your makeup before you get in the shower. Focus on the eyes as getting water in them with makeup on could cause irritation and pain.
Next, once you’re in the shower, use your cleanser, a rinse-off face mask, or a mud mask. Once you get out of the shower, apply a sheet mask and moisturizer or your night mask and let it work its wonders on your face while you sleep.

Wrapping up

Before I learned all the above, I spent years asking myself if I should do my skincare routine before or after showering. Now that I know all that, it’s so much easier to make the right choices. I’d love to hear what your skincare routines look like and whether you feel more comfortable mixing them in with shower time or keeping them completely separate. Share your thoughts and comments and let me know what type of products you love to use.
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