Young woman washing face

Nightly Cleansing Skin Care Tips Before Bed

Nightly Cleansing Skin Care Tips Before Bed

Guest Post By: Dr. Alan J. Parks, founder of Eastside Dermatology & DermWarehouse

Young woman washing face with clean water
Nightly cleansing routine.

Some people may argue that breakfast is the most important time of the day, but in my opinion, equally important is your pre-sleep skincare routine. It’s very easy to be tired or lazy or just forgetful, but how you clean you skin at night can and will affect not only what your skin looks like when you get up in the morning, but also what your skin looks like down the road.

I’ve been practicing dermatology for a long time – 30 years to be exact. I’ve seen a lot of patients in that time who develop acne and other skin related problems and sometimes the solution is as simple as teaching them the importance of taking off their makeup and washing their face at night. Will missing a night cause you to immediately break out? No, probably not, but leaving your makeup on will start to clog your pores overnight and this is what will cause breakouts and acne. If you’re already suffering from acne, keeping your makeup on at night will likely make it worse as well.

Depending on your skin type, your nightly cleansing routine will change a bit. If you have normal skin, use a mild face wash and moisturizing lotion nightly. If you have oily skin, you should wash your face twice daily, in the morning and at night and use a toner on the oily areas of your face, such as your nose and forehead. Use a water based or oil-free moisturizer and stay away from creams and heavy moisturizers. If your skin is dry, make sure to always moisturize after washing your face. Use a heavier cream to lock in moisture for longer. Make sure to also use very gentle skin care products for sensitive skin and stick to products that are unscented. Lastly, if you have combination skin, it’s best to use a gentle cleanser to clean your skin.  Gel-based moisturizers also work well for combination skin. A great product for all skin types is Apothederm Brightening Cleanser. This is a nighttime antioxidant that protects against free radicals, aids in anti-aging, and will make your skin look more radiant come the morning.

If you’re short on time or are planning to be out and away from your cleansing products at night, try using makeup removal wipes to take off your makeup and clear your skin. These are easy to carry with you anywhere and everywhere so you’ll never have an excuse to go to bed with a full face of makeup (or any makeup!). Also remember that you should wash/cleanse your face even if you haven’t been wearing makeup to get rid of any other bacteria, oil, or impurities that have built up throughout the day.

Something else to consider is that using soap (rather than a cleanser) can be hard on the face, especially if you have sensitive skin. It’s best to swap out your soap for a cleanser in order to decrease irritation and ensure you’re not stripping your skin of all the natural oils. You should also use an exfoliator once a week to rid your skin of dry or dead skin cells.

While you may be thinking that this sounds like a lot of work, I’ll reiterate that skipping your nightly skincare routine once in a while won’t necessarily cause you to breakout (though if you always have a handy supply of makeup removal wipes, you really have no excuse!). Adding a good nightly cleansing to your skin care routine and making sure to take off your makeup every night will, however, definitely ensure that you wake up with healthier, more beautiful looking skin.

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