Skincare at Night: The Current Trend
There’s a new trend in the commercial skincare industry. Science and customers alike are waking up to discover that there is much more to do at night than simply remove make-up, cleanse and moisturize! A number of recent scientific studies have shown that our skin does not “rest” during the day as it was previously believed.
On the contrary, during sleep, our skin takes an active part of our body metabolism through the release of several growth factors (like for example, DNA synthesis and keratinocyte proliferation) which are deeply involved in this process. Hence why cleansing at night is now more than just a nice habit: it’s essential to help your skin regenerate and rebalance itself.
A consistent night skincare routine regardless of your skin type (oily, dry, or normal) will help:
Repair environmental damages (UV rays, air pollution). Prevent future hyperpigmentation (when exposed to UV rays during the day). Keep your skin firm and elastic thanks to retinol or retinoids which stimulate collagen production. Reduce the appearance of your pores, acne, and blackheads on your face, back, and chest area.
On top of all these benefits on your facial skin, a good night skincare routine will also give you one more thing: better skin health overall! As we become older, our skin cells produce less and less collagen, resulting in fine lines and wrinkles.
By keeping your face clean at night, you’ll greatly reduce the number of dead skin cells that would otherwise stay on top of your skin. This will then allow your moisturizer to penetrate deeper into your skin surface… thus giving it time to act upon all those great benefits mentioned above!
We’ve therefore selected our best products in order to help you create the perfect night skincare routine. Remember that it should be adapted according to your skin needs, which are specific to each of us. Think about what your skincare goals are and take a look at our articles for more personalized advice on how to enhance your beauty routine.
Treat your skin right, before it’s too late:
Many women neglect their skincare routine during the night and they only focus on that when applying make-up in the morning. Well, we want to tell you that there is a little detail missing from this day/night double act: giving your skin some extra attention during the night.
Our skin is constantly renewing itself, but this process works its best during the night when we are sleeping. This is why your skincare routine should include cleansing, toning, and moisturizing as well as targeted treatments (such as masks) to give it a little boost.
Chemical exfoliation: The secret of younger-looking skin
Exfoliation is an important step of any skincare routine. By removing dead cells at the surface of your skin, you will let new ones (which are still fresh and full of nutrients) come to the forefront.
The result? A younger-looking skin! But not all chemical exfoliants are created alike… In order to find the right exfoliant for your needs, please check out our articles on how to choose a face scrub or on glycolic acid.
If you have skin that is prone to acne, then you’ll appreciate the way salicylic acid works on your skin: it helps reduce sebum production while at the same time acting on bacterial proliferation. After cleansing your face, apply a thin layer of product to your whole face and leave it on for about 3 minutes before rinsing off.
The power of Vitamin C:
In order to keep your skin from aging prematurely, you should consider adding Vitamin C into your skincare routine. The benefits of this vitamin are well-known: it stimulates collagen production, reduces the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, helps fight against free radicals…
But you should know that Vitamin C is also a great exfoliant. An ingredient that will tighten your skin during the day while giving it some extra glow at night! Our best product in this category is the Timeless 20% Vitamin C+E+Ferulic Acid Serum. More info on the subject is here.
For a monthly treatment to boost collagen production, you can also try Skinceuticals CE Ferulic. It will improve your skin firmness and reduce wrinkles thanks to its high concentration of Vitamin C, E, and ferulic acid. You’ll need some time to see the benefits of this serum, but it’s absolutely worth it!
If you are looking for a simple way to fight against acne without having to worry about sun exposure, then this is it. This treatment will target your spots thanks to its high concentration of glycolic acid. You can apply this cream directly before bedtime or use it as an all-over face treatment every night.
If you are looking for an effective product that will fight against fine lines, then it’s time to bring retinol into your skincare routine. This vitamin A derivative is one of the best anti-aging ingredients out there and you can find it in different forms: creams, serums… We’ve got our favorite retinol product here.
Amlactin is a moisturizing treatment that has an intensive anti-dryness action as well as a gentle exfoliating effect. This results in healthier and smoother skin. You can use this cream as often as you want, even once a day!
Skincare routine for oily skin at night:
1. Oil cleansing method
2. Gentle low pH cleanser
3. First essence or serum
4. Ampoule or emulsion
5 . Toner
6. Sheet mask, sleeping pack, last step moisturizer, night cream
7. Occlusives/Eye Cream/Lip Balm/Sunscreen
Oil cleansing method:
The basis of the oil cleansing method is to dissolve off all makeup and sunscreen, and other impurities from your skin without stripping it of its natural oils. Look for a gentle oil blend that suits your skin type. For this routine, I used Innisfree Blueberry Rebalancing Cleansing Oil.
Gentle low pH cleanser:
Low pH is good for the skin because high pH strips away natural lipids like ceramides, disrupts the acid mantle (prevents acne by maintaining an acidic environment), damages healthy bacterial flora (leading to more acne), and increases TEWL (transepidermal water loss).
Look for a gentle cleanser that suits your skin type and is compatible with your oil cleansing method of choice. For this routine, I used Innisfree Green Tea Pure Cleansing Foam (low pH), praised as one of the best low pH cleansers available in Asia, if not worldwide.
First essence or serum:
Asian skincare routines usually place a lot of emphasis on prepping the skin with products before you apply your serum/ampoule. The reason being, serums/ampoules work at a lower pH so they could potentially irritate or cause damage to an unprepared acidic skin barrier if applied directly to it.
Look for a first essence that suits your skin type and is compatible with your oil cleansing method of choice. For this routine, I used Mizon Snail Repair Intensive Ampoule as it contains 70% snail mucin (I’ve been on a snail kick lately).
Ampoule or emulsion:
In the next layer after the first essence or serum, ampoules and emulsions are lighter and more easily absorbed than serums/ampoules. Look for an ampoule or emulsion that suits your skin type and is compatible with your oil cleansing method of choice.
For this routine, I used LJH Vita Propolis Ampoule (or as it is marketed as now, Tonymoly The Chok Chok Green Tea Watery Ampoule) as it has a low pH and is more of a watery consistency (which I like).
A toner usually contains humectants to hydrate the skin, some have antibacterial properties so you can skip a day or two between each step if you’re in a rush. Look for a toner that suits your skin type. For this routine, I used Innisfree Green Tea Balancing Skin as it is pH 5.5 and contains soothing green tea extract.
Masks are optional but I feel like they enhance the benefits of my routine by nourishing my skin with more essences. I’ve recently incorporated sleeping packs into my routine during the day too, but more of this later. Look for a sheet mask that suits your skin type. For this routine, I used My Beauty Diary Black Pearl Mask as it is moisturizing and nourishing.
Sleeping pack/Last step moisturizer:
In the last step of your routine, sleeping packs are thicker than your average cream and contain silicones to form a protective layer on the top of the skin. Look for a sleeping pack that suits your skin type. For this routine, I used Etude House Berry AHA! Peeling Sleeping Pack is moisturizing and contains AHA to exfoliate the skin overnight.
An optional step for those who have dry skin, a night cream is a thicker version of your average face cream that you would use in place of a sleeping pack/last step moisturizer. Look for a night cream that suits your skin type. For this routine, I used Mizon Snail Repair Intensive Night Cream as it is moisturizing.
Best time to apply skincare at night:
is after cleansing, toning, and sheet masking. all products can be applied in a different order, but if you’re going with the traditional way of applying essences before creams, apply them in that order. for this routine, I started from left to right, since my skin is very dry and dehydrated it gets the most moisturizing benefits from the eye cream and sleeping pack.
I only use the sheet mask in the morning because it’s my last step and that way, I can just wipe it off with a damp cotton pad before I leave the house without worrying about staining anything.
For example, if you’re using an elastic hairband to gather your hair before you apply the sheet mask, make sure it’s one that won’t leave a mark.
in Asia where I live, it would be best to use Asian skincare products that are designed to work well with each other and are marketed specifically for dry skin types.