Here’s a shocker: Only 56 percent of YouBeauty readers wash their faces every night before going to bed. In fact, that means there’s about a one out of two chance that you don’t cleanse your skin before hitting the hay.
Listen, we get it. At the end of a crazy busy day (or a night of cocktailing around town), all you want to do is crash. But, you may not realize that simply washing your face at the end of the day could be the easiest way to make your skin look more radiant and have fewer issues like blackheads, pimples and large pores.
“During the day, your face builds up a layer of oil, dead skin cells, bacteria and sweat. When makeup is added, this creates a situation that can lead to clogged, dilated pores, breakouts and dull skin,” says Francesca Fusco, M.D., a New York City dermatologist and an associate member of the American Academy of Dermatology. “In the evening, it’s important to remove all of this so that your skin can renew itself,” she adds.
Another benefit of washing your face before bed: Your skin will absorb more antioxidants and other anti-aging ingredients that are in your nighttime serum or moisturizer, therefore giving you more radiant results. Hello, glow!
Here’s the most ironic part: You actually don’t have to wash your face in the morning if you washed it the night before. Yet, most of us wash our face first thing in the morning, but bag it at bedtime. The reasoning is that since your skin has been clean all night, it just needs a quick rinse off to remove your nighttime moisturizer before applying any daytime serums, creams and makeup. So if you’re lagging on washing up at night, just remember how much time you’ll save in the morning when you’re rushing to get out the door—not to mention, how much better your skin will look.
So what kind of cleanser should you use? “Look for a label that matches your skin type. That’s easier than reading through a long list of ingredients,” says Dr. Fusco.
Cleansers for oily skin types usually contain salicylic acid or glycolic acid, which help to dissolve and whisk away dirt and debris trapped in pores. If you want more exfoliation, try a daily anti-acne scrub, like Biore Acne-Clearing Scrub, which contains salicylic acid plus superfine alumina crystals to gently remove dulling dead skin.
Sensitive skin cleansers are usually more soothing and milky and lack detergents like sodium lauryl sulfate so they don’t make suds, but are still effective. Fresh Soy Face Cleanser has a cult following among folks with dry and sensitive skin.
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