Despite the (rather depressing) fact that I am over the age of 40, it is only in the last few months that I’ve decided to put a proper nighttime skin care routine into place. Of course, I have always been adamant about cleansing and moisturising my skin before bedtime and I can’t remember the last time I went to sleep with my makeup on. Thankfully, my mother had drilled this into me as soon as I discovered the joys of makeup. It’s something that stuck with me growing up and even in my ‘wilder’ younger years, even when I was so drunk I could barely make it under the covers, I somehow always managed to clean my skin before passing out. There was just always something about waking up with mascara sticking my eyes together and smeared across my face first thing in the morning that seemed a horror even worse than the hangover that awaited me.
So it’s something I always knew was important. However, over the last few months, I realised my skin was probably not as well-cleansed as I’d like and I probably needed to pay more attention to what I was using. My skin felt dull and dehydrated. The ‘double cleanse’ was the new buzzword, especially for people like me who enjoy wearing quite a bit of makeup and despite using wipes as well as a cleanser and moisturiser, I was probably not doing enough for my skin. After doing some research and asking around to knowledgeable friends, I have a new routine in place now which I’m loving so I thought I’d share it with you today.
Now my skin is what I would consider fairly ‘normal’. I get the occasional breakout around my chin or lower cheeks around my time of the month, my T-zone might get slightly oiler during summer and my cheeks and forehead a little dry in winter but that’s fairly rare. For the most part, it just sort of sits there doing its thing. Since starting this routine about 2 months ago now, my skin is so much brighter and fresher and feels truly clean and moisturised when I got to bed at night. Thankfully, I have had no issues at all with either oil or dryness. Result!
Step One: Eye Makeup Removal
Now I do wear a lot of eye makeup. I love a good kohl eye pencil, I swear by a slick of eyeliner and mascara to make me look awake and I do indulge in at least a bit of eyeshadow most days. So I try to remove the bulk of it first before I even begin my cleansing routine. I’ve used Johnson’s Makeup Be Gone Refreshing Wipes for years because first, they do the job, but secondly, because they never feel like they are tugging on the skin as I’ve had with other wipes. I let the wipe set on my eyes for maybe 10 seconds, pressing it gently against my face until I can feel my skin warm up the wipe. This means the wipe is actually breaking down the makeup before I begin to wipe my eyes with it. The skin around your eyes is just so delicate so immediately tugging at your skin is not the best idea. Give the product time to work its magic and then gently remove it.
I also still use Garnier Skin Active Micellar Cleansing Water from time to time as well to remove my eye makeup with a few cotton pads. It works much the same way as the wipes and I do the same with these, soaking the pads, resting them against my eyes for a few minutes with slight pressure before wiping the makeup away. I would say, however, that if you are not a heavy eye makeup wearer like I am, you can probably skip this step!
Step Two: Oil Cleanse
Once the bulk of my eye makeup is gone, I move on to an oil cleanse. There’s something incredibly pampering about cleansing oil and after a recommendation from a friend, I decided to try Una Brennan’s Super Facialist range at Boots. I have to say that the value for money is incredible in this range and you’ll see it appears a few times in my nighttime routine. The Vitamin C+ Brighten Skin Renew Cleansing Oil feels so wonderful against the skin and breaks down your makeup really easily. I use a clean soft muslin cloth run under warm water to remove all the oil, leaving my skin feeling incredibly hydrated (but not at all greasy). But I’m not done yet!
Step Three: Facial Cleanser
So my cleansing programme is currently three steps and the final cleanse is another from the Super Facialist range. The Neroli Firming Daily Brightening Cleanser is a great final step and a little goes a long way. I simply massage it into my skin, making sure to hit all the awkward spots that are easily forgotten at the edge of my face, around my neck etc. After a minute or so of cleansing, I then add just a bit of water which turns the cleanser into a sort of milky consistency, emulsifying everything just before rinsing it all off. I then use the muslin to make sure any remaining residue is completely gone from my skin. There’s no tightening of the skin after this step which I love. It’s a non-foaming cleanser (skip the ones that foam – they dry out your skin!) so it just leaves my face feeling lovely, soft and clean. It contains antioxidant-rich Mango Seed Oil, Hibiscus extract as well as Hyaluronic Acid (known for its hydrating benefits).
Step Four: Vitamin-C Enriched Eye Cream
Now I start the moisturising. I also purchased the Super Facialist Vitamin C+ Brighten Dark Circles Eye Cream which I like but I am looking for a night time eye cream at the moment. I think this one is perfect for daytime as it doesn’t leave any residue on your skin and soaks up nicely – a tiny rice-size amount will do both eyes nicely. Just don’t rub it into your skin. I touch a few dots under each eye and then tap it in with my middle finger and ring finger making sure not to pull the skin at all. Vitamin C is meant to be great for the delicate skin around your eyes, boosting collagen, brightening dark circles and firming skin so that’s part of the reason I chose this particular product. Of course, if anyone has any recommendations for a great night time eye cream, let me know! I’m researching at the moment so when I find one I love, I’ll let you know! For now, this will do!
Step Five: Serum
I absolutely adore Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate and I’ve been using it for quite a long time now so I wanted to work it into my new routine. Normally you want to apply any serums to cleansed skin before your moisturiser to really get the benefits of it. This does not in any way leave my skin feeling greasy or heavy. I normally use around 4 drops – one on my forehead, one on each cheek and one on my chin and that’s enough to do both my face and neck. I spread it lightly with my fingers and then gently press it into my skin with my palms, patting and pressing until it feels as though my skin has absorbed it. In the morning, my skin still feels dewy and soft and I have no doubt it’s due to this incredible product. After I’m finished with this (it takes ages to get through a single bottle as you really don’t use much), I’m eager to give Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Oil a try as I’ve heard so many good things about it from so many people. However, if you are looking for something a little less pricey, Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery is pretty damn fantastic.
Step Six: Retinol Moisturiser
For my final step, I’ve been using one more product from the Super Facialist range. I wanted to use a Retinol night cream (said to encourage cell turnover and boost collagen) for a while now and I have to say, I’m really loving this one along with the incredible price of £20!! Super Facialist Retinol+ Anti-Ageing Night Cream absorbs easily – my skin just drinks it up and I’m left with the feeling of incredibly moisturised skin. The ingredients list is great too, containing Retinol, Hyaluronic Acid, Sweet Almond Oil, White Tea and White Lupin seed extract to name a few.
So that’s my full nighttime skin routine. I have to say, after a few months of this process, my skin is definitely feeling so much brighter, fresher and more moisturised. I think your nighttime routine is just so important because it’s when your skin isn’t having to deal with all the elements it does during the day – from your makeup to UV Rays to wind to dryness etc – that it can actually make the most of the products you use. I’m really liking the Super Facialist range as well – the cleansing products especially – plus, the price points are really great too (and no, this is in no way sponsored!).
I’d love to hear from you now – what is your nighttime skincare routine like? Do you have one? Are there any products you feel are absolute must-haves now? Let me know in the comments!