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Order to apply nail/cuticle oil & nail/hand cream?

Lately I have been trying to apply both cuticle oil and nail/hand cream more consistently, to help with hand & nail health and nail growth. However, this may be a silly question, but I am not sure what is the correct order to apply them. My instinct says that oil should be applied last, just like with face & body care products, but I don’t know for sure, and I haven’t been able to find any useful answers when I searched. Any advice/opinions?


Re: Order to apply nail/cuticle oil & nail/hand cream?

Hi, @caitbird !  Late response:  I apply my cuticle oil first and then my hand/nail cream.  The cream "seals" the oil in...and it's less messy that way.  I usually apply this combo twice a day when I'm not wearing nail polish (just FYI).

Re: Order to apply nail/cuticle oil & nail/hand cream?

What a great question @caitbird I have started to pay more attention to my skin and started to apply my consistent skin care routine to my hands and I never thought about this! 
What are your favorite hand creams and cuticle oils?

Re: Order to apply nail/cuticle oil & nail/hand cream?

@caitbird  I always apply oil first, then cream/lotion. I do the same for my face and body. Oils don’t really “seal” things in because they’re not as occlusive as people think. (The exception is mineral oil, a byproduct of petrolatum production.) Oils won’t prevent ingredients in creams/lotions from sinking into skin. 


That doesn’t mean you can’t apply in the opposite order though. It comes down to personal preference. One pro of applying cream last is that my fingers feel less greasy/oily and I’m less likely to leave grease prints on things afterward (phone screen, tablet screen, light switches, etc.). 😄

Re: Order to apply nail/cuticle oil & nail/hand cream?

@WinglessOne  see, that's the order I was using, but then I started second guessing myself because I'd always read that applying an oil before a moisturizer/cream would prevent the moisturizer from absorbing. But I guess that is kind of a myth? 😕 Good to know! Thank you for being a helpful source of useful knowledge, as usual! 😉

Re: Order to apply nail/cuticle oil & nail/hand cream?

Aww, thanks @caitbird! 😊 And yeah, that’s a myth—unless the oil in question is mineral oil. I mean, even mineral oil and petrolatum balms aren’t 100% occlusive. But if you apply a skincare product over them, ingredients in that product will have a harder time penetrating your skin. Some plant oils can be moisturizing, but not nearly as occlusive as petrolatum or mineral oil. Creams/lotions can get through things like jojoba “oil,” rosehip oil, marula oil, sweet almond oil, etc. without much trouble. 


You can also mix oil into your hand cream and then just apply that mixture, though you risk negatively changing the formulation of the cream. Also, the mixed-in oil might not penetrate the nail plate and skin folds as well as it would solo. 🤷‍♀️

Re: Order to apply nail/cuticle oil & nail/hand cream?

@WinglessOne  I think I will probably stick to applying cuticle oil first and then nail/hand cream, since that seems to have been working for me. Thanks again for all the info, I feel much better now haha!

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