The Most Simple Nighttime Skincare Routine for Glowing Skin

As you switch off the TV ready to make the transfer from couch to bed, the temptation is high to reach for your nearest face wipe and crawl into those dreamy linen sheets and call it a night. But that’s not doing your skin any favours.

Given that nighttime is prime time for skin repair and rejuvenation (beauty sleep is literally a thing), whatever you do before you sleep will impact the complexion you wake up to.

So if good skin is on the agenda for you (i.e. all of us) here’s an easy routine you can follow at night that’ll delay your bedtime by about only five minutes, and will have you waking up to glowing skin.

5 step skincare routine for glowing skin

1. Double cleanse

Yep, one cleanse is simply not enough. Why? Well, you first need to effectively remove whatever is sitting on your skin – whether that’s just the bacteria, dirt and oil that’s accumulated during the day, or the sunscreen and makeup you applied in the morning. Once that’s all gone, that’s when your cleanser can do its work to properly clean your skin and pores.

Start with a cleansing oil or balm, as they’re the most effective formulations for breaking down and removing dirt, oil, and makeup. Ipsum Best Skin Cleansing Oil Balm Cleanser melts as you massage, gently shifting makeup and impurities and the heavenly scent will have you ready to fall asleep. Follow with a cleanser that suits, like La Roche Toleriane Caring Wash if you prefer a milk cleanser, or Go-To Properly Clean if a foaming cleanser is more your thing.

2. Exfoliate

Exfoliating is an essential step to keeping your skin looking fresh and radiant as it helps get rid of dead skin cells that can contribute to dullness and breakouts, BUT it’s not a step you should do every night. If you over-exfoliate, you can compromise your skin barrier, which may cause inflammation and sensitisation (which could look like redness and lead to reactions from your other products). It can also dry out your skin, which would lead to an over-production of oil, which can cause even more congestion and breakouts. Aim for an exfoliation session once or twice a week to keep your skin happy.

If you like the feel of a scrub, pick a gentle physical exfoliant, like Trilogy Vitamin C Polishing Powder (the vitamin C will also help brighten your skin!), or if you prefer a chemical exfoliant (as in, a liquid formula that exfoliates without scrubbing), try Mecca Cosmetica Glow-Giver Exfoliating Solution.

3. Treat

Here’s where things get complicated because there are approximately a million and one serums you can choose to treat your skin at night. There’s something for every skin concern, so it can be complicated trying to figure out which one to use. So we’ll keep this simple.

If you want good skin, hydration is key (even if your skin type is on the oilier side), so make sure your night skincare routine has some nourishing ingredients and products. A serum is the best kind of product to deliver hydrating ingredients, as the formulations are more concentrated and can penetrate deeper and deliver those ingredients where they need to go. Estée Lauder Advance Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II is a great all-rounder serum, but features one of the best hydrating ingredients around: Hyaluronic acid.

Another key ingredient to use in a nighttime routine is retinol (AKA vitamin A), what’s commonly referred to as the holy grail of skin ingredients. It works to stimulate collagen production and promote cell turnover, so it helps fight the common signs of ageing (like lines, wrinkles and pigmentation) and can even help with acne and breakouts. The short version? Retinol is really, really good. But it’s a potent ingredient, and if used too enthusiastically can lead to flaking, drying and irritation. Start off slow – think once or twice a week – and gradually build up your tolerance. Alternate something like Ultraceuticals Ultra A Skin Perfecting Serum Mild every third night with your hydrating serum and you’re good to go.

4. Eyecare

If the goal is to look glowing, you can’t forget about your eye area. Dark circles and wrinkles can instantly leave you looking exhausted even if you managed to get a full eight hours. A vitamin C based eye serum, like the APOT.CARE Radiant C Eye Serum, can help nourish and moisturise the delicate skin around the eyes, while the brightening and pigmentation-fighting vitamin C will help reduce those unwanted dark tones and boost luminosity.

5. Moisturise

No matter how moisturised your skin feels at this point, don’t skip out on your moisturiser. And because your body is working overtime while you sleep, you can use a richer formulation than you do for your daytime skin routine. The Sulwhasoo Concentrated Ginseng Renewing Cream feels like butter to apply and will help replenish your skin as you sleep, leaving you waking up to skin that’s soft, plump and happy.

If you prefer an oil texture, use four to five drops of Mere Phytosphere Resilience 8 Bio-Illuminating Face Oil, and press into your skin.

Want more beauty tips? Here's how to hide a bad night's sleep.

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