Okay, right now you might be thinking, “What is this – a Cosmo article, or an ad for the latest deep sea mask? I thought Team Better was about wellness, not a beauty rag.” Well, we are about wellness, and about you taking care of you. But guess what – that thirsty skin on your pretty face is part of you, and you will feel so good taking care of it. Maybe you are a cleansing aficionado already and you never miss a night of replenishing that gorgeous skin. But for many of us, one of the first things to get punted is how well we take care of the little things that make our own lives a little better. TB’s job is to show you that there is no need – you can do something really good for your face now without plopping down a wad of cash for a facial or buying a lot of insanely expensive products.
Bedtime is best
According to researchers at the University of California-Irvine, new skin cells grow faster while you snooze, so a good evening facial routine should be a high priority. (1) The goal of the evening routine is to repair damage from the day’s pollution, sun and stress, as well as to hydrate, since you lose more water from your skin while you sleep. You may not have everything for a full regimen, or the time to be able to do what’s best for that face every evening, but if you know the steps and work with what you’ve got, you can give your face a little more TLC.
Let’s break it down
According to dermatologists Dr. Doris Day and Dr. Julia Tsu of Wall Street Dermatology, many of us are not properly washing our faces to maintain healthy and happy skin. Our first guiding principle should be to use products that are hypoallergenic, fragrance-free, and non-comedogenic, which means they will not clog pores. (2) Here are five straight-forward steps you can take to make your face super happy every night. Maybe you don’t need all five, but it’s good to know the basics and modify with what your face needs.
Most dermatologists and estheticians recommend using an electric rotating cleansing brush with a gentle cleanser and lukewarm water. This process will remove all the dirt and oil very effectively, even from your pores. Let the brush gently scrub all the face and neck.
2. Apply a mask
The purpose of the mask is to draw out any remaining clogged pores and really open your face to be able to absorb any active ingredients in your final steps. Some masks are even good for smoothing fine lines. If you don’t have a mask, or are in a rush, try using a gentle exfoliant to slough off that dead skin.
3. Use a retinol
This step is optional, and often more useful for those with problematic skin or those looking for an anti-aging step. If you like to use a retinoid gel or cream (any over the counter or prescription product with retinol) to brighten or heal skin, this is the optimal point to apply it sparingly, but because these products can sometimes dry the skin, it should be followed with a rich moisturizer.
Use a rich moisturizer generously all over face and neck. Night moisturizers will often feel a little heavier and will not contain sunscreen. Cost is not the most important factor, but do use something non-comedogenic that has primarily natural ingredients.
5. Dab on eye cream
This step comes after you have moisturized. Especially for those of us who aren’t kids any more, incorporating eye cream into a nightly routine is big. The skin around the eyes is delicate and needs both protection and moisture, but it absorbs differently than the rest of the face. Eye creams are formulated to penetrate that area.
You are worth the time
Washing your face is more than an act of hygiene – it’s an act of caring. Sure, the skin on your face and neck will be healthier and younger looking for longer if you take the time to do a good job cleansing each day, but it is more than just that. Making the effort to do even small things that are purely for your benefit is really good for you. You are sending a message to yourself that you are worth prioritizing and taking a little time to care for. (3) Enjoy your clean, healthy face. You are worth it.
- University of California Irvine. Circadian rhythms regulate skin stem cell metabolism and expansion, UCI study finds. Eureka Alert website. Jan 6, 2015.
- Oliver D. How best to take care of your skin at night. The Huffington Post. March 20, 2015.
- Taking Good Care of Yourself. Mental Health America website. Accessed on October 20, 2016.
Here is a great source for facials you can do at home with all natural items (mostly food!) to give your face an extra dose of love: