Six of the best skincare products to wear while you sleep
‘Beauty sleep’ isn’t a myth - skin undergoes a complex reparative process at night
Kiehl’s Cannabis Sativa Seed Oil Herbal Concentrate, Murad Night Fix Enzyme Treatment, Lixir Night Switch Retinol 1%, Lixir Universal Emulsion, Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Hydrating Mask and Votary Natural Lip Oil.
The skincare we apply in the morning is oriented around instant texture improvement, comfort, sun protection and creating a good base for makeup. At bed time, we pull out the vast majority of active and resurfacing products. The skin undergoes a complex reparative process while we sleep, and shortly before bed is the ideal time to apply the sort of hardworking treatment products that it is not practical or comfortable to apply during daylight hours. In other words, day products are mostly for maintenance, night products are for problem solving.
Colette Hayden, the woman behind cult brand Lixir Skin, created a series of products designed to work on the skin overnight – “At night when we’re sleeping, the skin is genetically programmed to switch into recovery mode. ‘Beauty sleep’ isn’t a myth or a marketing notion ... with this in mind, it’s good to apply targeted skincare solutions at night for specific skin concerns.”
Choose treatment products that are specifically designed for the issue which is bothering you. A treatment product does not necessarily have to be a harsh one. I found Kiehl’s Cannabis Sativa Seed Oil Herbal Concentrate (€44 at Arnotts beauty hall) incredibly soothing but highly effective. An oil designed for congested skin prone to breakouts and redness, I apply it after a salicylic acid product designed to act on blemishes to soothe, moisturise, and help with pigmentation scarring.
If you are looking for something to soothe, rehydrate and resurface, try Murad Night Fix Enzyme Treatment (€80 at murad.co.uk). Highly unusually, this product should be applied after your moisturiser. I was sceptical, but it works and it doesn’t stress the skin the way retinoids can. If you would like to try a form of retinol – it is a wonder ingredient, and the only one that can genuinely impact the signs of premature aging as well as acne and pigmentation – Lixir Skin’s offering is a nice place to start.
Hayden created the brand’s Night Switch Retinol 1% (€36 at fetchbeauty.com) drops – they are designed to be added to the Lixir Universal Emulsion (€34 at fetchbeauty.com). According to Hayden, “The Night Switch Retinol 1% refines texture, improves sun damage and boosts protein production to give density, volume, firmness and reduce wrinkle depth… retinol is great for blemishes and problem skin but it’s also good for older skins and helping to improve wrinkles.”
If you are finding that active products are resulting in peeling or dry skin, take a break and try a comforting overnight mask like Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Hydrating Mask (€24 at Arnotts). Skin really does drink it up lustily, and you awake to a plumped, softened and comforted face and neck.
Don’t neglect lips at night, either. The best possible way to combat dry lips is to apply something very moisturising at night. Votary Natural Lip Oil (€38 at Space NK from July) is a delicious, non-sticky natural almond oil and mandarin oil/gloss hybrid that can be worn any time, but it works beautifully during sleep too.