You may think that once you have all the skincare products you need, you can just layer them on top of each other like a cake! But actually, the ingredients of each skincare item matters. Why? Dermatologist Dr. Lisa Kellet said that mixing the wrong ones can become an irritant and give you an allergic reaction; they can cancel each other out, making them useless.

If you're clueless or unsure about ingredients that don't work well together, read our basic guide below:

Vitamin C + AHAs and BHAs

Active ingredients like salicylic acid (BHA) and glycolic acid (AHA) alter the pH formula of your skin. If combined with vitamin C (or citric acid), Allure says they will "wipe it out before it has done your [skin] any good."

Benzoyl Peroxide + Hydroquinone

Benzoyl peroxide is a spot treatment, while hydroquinone is a skin lightening agent. You would think that mixing the two together would be great but it can actually lead to staining on your skin. So be careful!

Salicylic Acid + Glycolic Acid

They're both used to chemically exfoliate your complexion. But bringing the two together will strip your skin and most likely cause an irritation, according to Dr. Kellet.

Retinol + Vitamin C

Both are excellent for anti-aging, but putting the two in one routine can aggravate sensitive skin.

Any Acid + Retinol

Retinol is known for unclogging pores, increasing cell turnover, and reducing fine lines and wrinkles. If you combine that with another acid such as salicylic or glycolic, which also claim to do the same, they will just negate each other!

Oil-based + Water-based

It's a fact that oil repels water. So if you think that applying your face oil before your moisturizer will double your skin's hydration, what's actually going to happen is your complexion won't be able to completely absorb your moisturizer, rendering it ineffective.

This story originally appeared on Cosmo.ph.

*Minor edits have been made by FemaleNetwork.com editors.

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