Sleeping in your makeup exposes your skin to free radicals from the environment, which are held by the layer of cosmetics. These contribute to the breakdown of collagen, the protein responsible for skin strength and elasticity. The degradation of collagen leads to premature skin aging including the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Foundations and thick, oil-based primers are some the most damaging products. They prevent your skin from renewing itself naturally at night, causing blackheads, acne and dullness.
One night of sleeping with makeup is unlikely to cause long term damage to your skin but reversing the overnight effects requires more than a quick wipe. Here are 3 skin-saving tips for rejuvenating your complexion after falling asleep with your makeup on.
Cleanse your skin deeply
Clogged pores and irritated skin call for a gentle approach. This is the time to avoid scrubs and exfoliating formulas. Use an oil based cleanser with low levels of surfactant to dissolve the remaining makeup and buildup without stripping your skin of its natural oils. Cleansers formulated with natural oils work best regardless of your skin type, because they are similar in structure to the skin’s lipid layer, and they are much gentler than detergents.
If you normally wear a lot of makeup, you should cleanse in two steps. First, use an oil based cleanser to break down the build up of cosmetics and sebum that accumulates on the surface of your skin, followed by a deeper water-based cleanse. A second round of cleansing will clean much deeper into the pores to remove any impurities.
If you only have one product, you can still go for a double cleanse: use a larger amount of your product in the second phase, and spend a few more minutes massaging it into your skin, to make the cleansing action more effective.
Hydrate your skin with a balancing mask
After a deep cleanse, use a balancing mask to provide an intense boost of moisture to your parched skin.
Some of the best hydrating masks are those rich in ingredients like fatty acids and vitamin C. These help sooth and brighten your skin, soften fine lines and even out your skin’s texture. Vitamin E, avocado and oatmeal are best for sensitive skin with inflammation, while botanicals and essential oils such as calendula, aloe, argan, and jojoba oil help balance your skin's natural oils.
Avoid ingredients like alcohol or synthetic fragrances as these can irritate your skin even further.
Restore your skin with a serum
Chronically dry skin needs more than just a thick moisturizer to solve the problem. Follow your mask with serum to help revitalize, strengthen and restore your skin, while encouraging cell renewal.
Serums are generally one of the most effective products in any skin care routine because they are packed with the most active ingredients. Look for a serum rich in peptides and vitamins. Peptides will give you a boost in both hydrating and anti-aging efforts, like promoting collagen and elasticity. While vitamins like niacinamide (vitamin B3) have a brightening effect that help address uneven pigmentation.