What’s the difference between a serum and an oil, and which is best

What’s the difference between a serum and an oil, and which is best?

What’s the difference between a serum and an oil, and which is bestToday, a glance through your favorite magazine or visit to the drugstore will reveal many different products designed to improve a variety of skin conditions.  Mainstream media is filled with advertisements for serums and oils to address skin concerns.  All of this information can be overwhelming and confusing.  Here’s a simple explanation to explain what serums and oils are and how to determine a good product to start with for your skin type.

What is serum?

Serums are lightweight, gel-like liquids that quickly absorb deep into the skin to help protect the skin and provide relief for some skin conditions.  Typically a serum should be applied directly to the skin before applying moisturizer, so it has the best contact with its surface.  Some serums are designed to be used without moisturizer and do the work of both products.  Because serums are absorbed into the skin, they work well underneath makeup and other cosmetics.

What is facial oil?

Facial oils are formulated with botanical and essential oils to provide moisture, nourishment, and relief for some skin conditions.  These oils are non-comedogenic, meaning they are designed not to block your skin’s pores.   Like serums, oils are applied to the skin after cleansing and can be used during the day or overnight.

Can you use both an oil and a serum?

Yes, you can use both simultaneously, although many people will select just one per routine.  Schedule a skincare consultation with one of our expert estheticians at Organic Elements Spa to determine the precise combination of products that will work best for your specific skin condition.  In this case, it’s best to apply the serum first and then the oil.

Starting with serums and oil is as easy as determining your skin type.

Selecting good skincare products shouldn’t be complicated.  Our team can work with you to determine the perfect products for your skin type–click here to book a consultation today.  In the meantime, this chart will help you understand the different skin types and help you identify a product to start with that should be most beneficial for you.

Skin Type Description Recommendation
Normal skin This skin type is considered “well-balanced” with even sebum production and moisture content.  The texture is smooth and rosy, and the surface is clear with fine pores.  There are no visible blemishes, greasy patches, or flaky areas. Eight Greens Youth Serum


This serum protects skin from the drying and aging effects of environmental stressors like pollution, blue light, and UV rays.

Dry Skin This skin type produces less sebum and lacks the required lipid and oil production to retain moisture.  The skin feels or appears tight, flaky, and dull.  Often pores are nearly invisible while the skin shows signs of premature aging. Rosehip Triple C+E Firming Oil


This oil includes rosehip, jojoba, and seabuckthorn oil to improve moisture, soothe dry skin, and fight visible signs of aging.

Combination Skin This skin type shares characteristics of both normal and dry skin. People with combination skin tend to have oiliness on the forehead, jaw, and nose and dryness on the cheeks, jawline, and hairline. Facial Recovery Oil


This product is infused with clary sage oil and ylang ylang to keep skin even and perfectly balanced.

Sensitive Skin People who experience consistent unpleasant sensations such as heat, stinging, burning, and tingling have sensitive skin.  The most common cause of sensitive skin is genetic predisposition. Calm Skin Arnica Booster-Serum


Use this serum to calm and soothe dry skin with a blend of arnica, chamomile, and lavender.

Oily Skin This skin type has overactive sebaceous glands.  As a result, pores are enlarged, and the skin appears shiny and is prone to breakouts. Citrus & Kale Potent C+E Serum


This serum is fast absorbing and contains potent antioxidant and vitamin-rich ingredients to reduce the appearance of uneven skin tone.

Get started with a new skincare regimen today!

Stop by in person or shop our online spa boutique to find more quality skincare products.  Our professional team can help you select the best products for your specific skin type.  And don’t forget to book your next in-person treatment with us soon!