glow essence FAQ

For many, using an essence is a new experience. Understanding the way that essences work and how to incorporate them into your existing skincare routine can feel daunting and confusing.

So, we took to social to find out everything you wanted to know about essences, in hopes of making them a little less intimidating! Read on for the answers you’ve been searching for.

Q: Can I apply the essence and add an oil on top right after?

A: Yes! But we recommend only using one product while the essence is still wet (whether it be a serum, oil, or other moisturizer) to prevent pilling.

Q: Can I use the essence midday to refresh my skin and makeup?

A: We recommend sticking to the rosewater toner for that! Think of the glow essence as more of a treatment for your skin, as opposed to a refresher.

Q: Can I use the essence in place of a toner?

A: No - despite their similar appearances, the functions of essences and toners are very different. Toners work as a second cleansing step - they remove any residual dirt or makeup and also help balance the pH of your skin.

Essences, on the other hand, are formulated to help deeply hydrate the skin and prep it for subsequent products. They help improve absorption of whatever products you use next, so you can really get the most out of your routine.

Q: Is an essence like a serum?

A: Not exactly! Though serums and essences both work to deliver high concentrations of actives, essences are thinner, usually more hydration-focused, and less dense.

Essences are actually what you want to use right before serums to help them absorb more deeply into the skin.

Q: How do essences penetrate so deeply?

A: Essences are made up of smaller molecules than most serums, facial oils, or creams. This allows them to penetrate the skin’s top layer instead of sitting on top of it.

Q: How do essences hydrate the skin?

A: Aside from being full of hydrating actives, essences also prepare your skin to absorb moisture more easily. As they penetrate the top layer of the skin, they create a pathway that subsequent products can follow. This allows your oils and moisturizers to sink in deeper than they would on their own!

Q: When should I be using the essence in my skincare routine?

A: We always recommend applying products from thinnest to thickest to guarantee the best possible absorption. After cleansing, the product order we use is: toner, essence, serum, moisturizer, and sunscreen!

Q: Will the essence make oily skin more oily?

A: Nope! Essences are actually great for oily skin.

Excessive oiliness is often a sign of dehydration. If your skin is dehydrated, it might start overproducing sebum to compensate. Making sure to keep your skin properly hydrated can decrease the likelihood of this happening!

Our glow essence in particular uses sea grape caviar, a powerful humectant. It helps restore and retain moisture in the skin, which then helps regulate sebum production. The result? Skin that feels more balanced and less oily.

Q: How do I apply it?

A: We recommend holding the bottle about a foot away from your face and spritzing 1-2x. Gently pat it into your skin with your fingertips and follow up with your serums and moisturizers.

Q: Is sea grape caviar vegan?

A: Yes! Despite the name, sea grape caviar (link blog post) is a completely vegan ingredient. It’s actually a type of green algae that we harvest sustainably from the Bohol Sea in the Philippines.

Still have questions? Email us at or DM us on Instagram :)