Esthetician Fern Burg's

Pro Skincare Tips

Take a deep dive into popular skincare ingredients & products to learn what's best for your unique skin type and how to properly use them!

Skincare Products

The order in which you apply your skincare products is important to make sure they're all working as intended.

Cleanser > Toner > Serum(s) > Moisurizer > SPF (AM ONLY)

When in doubt, think thin to thick. If you're using more than one serum, consider "cocktailing" those in your hand and applying them together.

Learn Fern's Extended Cleanse Technique

Using your cleanser and gentle, circular pressure with your fingertips start at your forehead...

• Cleanse your forehead and temples for 10 seconds

• Cleanse your outer cheeks/sides of your face for 10 seconds

• Cleanse the t-zone area including your inside cheeks, nose, nostrils, upper lip, under the lip and chin, the jawline and throat for another 10-20 seconds.


This means that you have effectively removed: dead skin cells, dust and pollution, sweat, and products from your face, and you now have a clean pallet that will better absorb your toner, serum, and moisturizer.

Your skin depends on being cleansed in the morning and in the evening. If you have very dry skin, you can simply freshen up your face with water, pat dry, and apply your products and SPF from there.

When done correctly, exfoliation is one of the healthiest steps you can take for your skin. Exfoliation frequency is dependent on the type of exfoliant (scrub, acidic, retinol), the condition of your skin, and the time of year.

Check the ingredients list below for more details

Generally, summer would be a good time to lower the frequency since longer days mean more light and sun exposure. My advice is to use your exfoliation once or twice a week. Winter and shorter days mean we can dial that frequency up a bit to 2-3 times per week, or to every other night.

Skincare Devices

Place the LED device directly on the spot you wish to treat and gently hold the LightStim in place for three minutes for each desired area of treatment.

For best results, conduct your LED sessions treating affected areas 5 times per week on a consistent basis.

Place the LED device directly on the spot you wish to treat and gently hold the LightStim in place for three minutes for each desired area of treatment.

For best results, conduct your LED sessions treating affected areas 3-5 times per week for several months.

Use after cleansing, before toning. Working from the inside of the face outward, roll skin in upward motions focusing on inflamed breakouts. Use daily for best results.

Cleaning Instructions: Wash stainless steel cylinder thoroughly with Ultra Gentle Cleanser or unscented antibacterial soap and warm water, wipe dry, then spritz with rubbing alcohol after each use. If stored in the fridge or freezer, keep your clean roller in a clean plastic bag to protect it from bacteria.

Understanding Skincare Ingredients

Sun protection factor (SPF) is the most crucial product in your anti-aging arsenal.

UV rays destroy collagen and elastin, causing premature aging, wrinkles, and uneven, splotchy tone. The most common complaint an Esthetician hears is about skin tone.

The next concern is large pores. Did you know that UV damage is responsible for visible pores? Do you have an “orange-peel” skin texture?  I can tell you that UV damage has damaged your collagen, causing sagging pores.

SPF only works if you use it properly. It’s a practical and protective product when used this way:

• Dispense one line of SPF on the first three fingers of one hand

• Apply one finger-full to the left side of your face, another to the other side, and the 3rd finger-full to your chest area

• When outside for 2 hours or more, reapplication is necessary.

• Reapply after sweating or swimming

• If you are using acne topicals or night-time exfoliation, reapply hourly.

• WEAR SUN-PROTECTIVE HATS AND CLOTHING. Sun lotion is not enough to stave off sunburn or UV damage.

• See Skin Cancer Foundation for more tips about SPF and skin cancer prevention.

This star peptide is a complex that means “epidermal growth factor.” Doctors use this peptide to speed up wound healing and recovery, specifically for burn patients. In skincare, using it triggers your skin’s collagen and elastin production, prevents hyperpigmentation, aids in hydration, and diminishes the appearance of wrinkles.  Some moisturizers already include this peptide.

Hyaluronic Acid (HA) is like a drink of water for your face! It is not acidic. This product is essential if your skin is dehydrated, dry, sensitized, or red. Topical hydration is critical to the proper functioning of your skin.

More about dry or dehydrated skin: Many people have dehydrated skin ( a skin condition.) Dehydrated skin has a low moisture content, is sensitive, may be pink or red, may have tiny white bumps like a rash, and has the feeling of never being hydrated enough. 

If you are a dry skin type, you probably have tiny or barely-visible pores. 

All skin types benefit from more topical hydration from HA and very gentle exfoliation. Most people think their dry skin is because they aren’t drinking enough water, which can be a factor. 

HA is often apple two times daily, after toner. If you are using retinol, you can apply it before the retinol unless otherwise directed. If your retinol is moisturizing, don’t apply anything else. If it is a stand-alone serum, wait 10-15 minutes before applying a moisturizer to avoid dilution.

Peptides are little self-improvement coaches for your skin cells that trigger collagen and elastin production. Peptides are more moisturizing than retinol, improve hydration and reduce inflammation. If you are sensitive to retinol, choosing a peptide is a smart alternative!

Also known as Vitamin A, this serum is the pinnacle of anti-aging skincare ingredients. Why? It’s exfoliating, so old skin cells are sloughed off, and the more youthful (plumper!) cells rise to the surface. 

If you are an experienced retinol user, you already know that you’ll be applying at night, limiting sun sensitivities during daylight hours. 

Directions: Apply 1-2 nights a week to start. Progress to 3 nights/week for two weeks. No skin irritation? You can now use it nightly. 

Be aware of your daytime activities. If you have a hike scheduled the next day, skip the retinol the night before. 

Pro tip: Use this gentle scrub in the morning (1-2 times a week) after using retinol the night before. This super-softening and brightening step guarantees your serums and moisturizers will be better absorbed.

Antioxidants - topical or dietary - help slow down or prevent aging from oxidation of the skin or the body. I tell my in-person clients about the benefit of topical Vitamin C. Think about an apple. You’ve cut it and only eat ½, leaving the other ½ on the counter. When exposed to oxygen, that apple begins an “aging process,” and within 5 minutes, it starts turning brown—similarly, our skin is susceptible to this extrinsic aging. Extrinsic aging is driven to a large extent by oxidative stress caused by UV irradiation.

Vitamin C serums can increase your hydration levels and assist with brightening your skin.

Directions: Vitamin C is a morning serum. Apply after your toner and before your moisturizer.