Bare Minimum Beauty & Hygiene Routine for Lazy Nights

//Bare Minimum Beauty & Hygiene Routine for Lazy Nights

Simplest Nighttime Bathroom Routine Needed to Get By

You’ve probably read all about what you need to be doing before bed to maintain and improve your skin, and it can amount to a long, daunting list. Removing your makeup, cleansing, exfoliating, using masks, applying toner, dabbing on acne treatments, moisturizing, slathering on eye cream, etc. Then there’s the work to maintain basic hygiene: brushing, flossing, mouthwash, eye care, washing your hair, etc. That’s a lot of tedious work when all you want to do is unwind and get to bed.

So for the days when you’re feeling particularly lazy, we’ve pared down that nighttime routine list to the bare minimum experts recommend you should be doing to stay in proper form, based on your specific issues and needs.

Facial Cleansing Whether you’re wearing makeup or not, it’s important to wash your face to remove the dirt and germs you pick up in day-to-day life and whenever you touch your face. Washing your face gives your face a clean slate, so to speak, so your skin can embark on its natural exfoliating and rejuvenation process while you sleep. This is probably why some research has shown that cleansing before bed can give keep your skin more youthful.

But for those tired, lazy nights, just how diligent you need to be with your face washing depends on your skin type.

Dry Skin (or Normal)

For dry skin, you have a little leeway when it comes to your facial cleansing. Opt for a creamy (non-soap) cleanser, which has moisturizing properties. Wet your face with warm water, work the cleanser into your skin using your fingers and then rinse and pat dry with a clean towel. Make sure the water is not too hot as this can make your skin feel tight and dry it out even more. Though your skin needs extra moisture, you can skip it every now and then if you’ve used a moisturizing cleanser.

Absolute worst case, in the laziest of scenarios, with dry skin you’re more able to get away with just splashing your face with water and rubbing it off with a clean towel. This will remove a basic layer of makeup, dirt, etc. that’s on your skin before bed.

If you’ve missed a little makeup residue on your skin from your quick cleansing routine, just know that the makeup may slightly dehydrate your skin, licensed esthetician Daniela Ferri explains. She says that leaving makeup on overnight will not cause you to have more wrinkles, but if you have dry skin and it becomes drier from sleeping in your makeup, the dehydration will make your skin appear dull, lackluster and can magnify existing wrinkles.    

Oily or Acne-Prone Skin
If you have oily or acne-prone skin, it’s particularly important to make sure you cleanse before bed to remove makeup, excess oils and dirt so you don’t wake up to a breakout. Licensed esthetician Daniela Ferri explains that foundation and powder create a barrier on your skin, and if you’re also producing excessive oil, your pores will quickly get clogged. This leads to blackheads and breakouts.

To remove makeup and grime, dampen your face with warm water and lightly apply a cleanser formulated for oily or acne-prone skin with your fingers. Rinse thoroughly and pat your skin dry with a clean towel.

Or, for a faster approach, simply scrub your face with facial wipes or pads that contain salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide (likely the same ingredients in your cleanser)—keep the wipes by your bed if you’re feeling extra lazy.    

Eye Makeup Removal
Regardless of your skin type, it’s important to wash off your eye makeup most nights. Keeping your eye makeup on can lead to eye infections and clogged pores in your eyelids, which can lead to those painful little styes and puffy red eyes.

You can quickly remove eye makeup with makeup remover pads (keep them next to your bed if it means you’re more likely to use them). If you skip the eye makeup removal now and then, it’s not likely to lead to problems, but try to avoid making a habit of it—your skin and pillowcases will thank you.

Moisturizers & Eye Creams
One of the best things you can do to prevent wrinkles from forming is not to apply moisturizer, but to protect your skin from the sun. Because of this, if you’re tired, go ahead and skip your moisturizers and eye cream without feeling guilty. In the morning, you can apply a daily moisturizer and, of course, make sure to apply sunscreen.

(For dry skin, make sure you’ve read the section above on using a moisturizing facial cleanser.)

If you have aging skin, and it’s dry to normal (not oily or acne-prone), you may want to be more vigilant with your night creams. So if you’ve skipped a thorough facial cleansing on a lazy night, you can still apply your anti-aging moisturizer before you hit the sheets—it may be more difficult for it to penetrate your skin, but you’ll still derive benefits from it.

Dental Hygiene
“The recommended brushing time is between 2 to 3 minutes per session with a minimum of two brushing sessions per day,” says dentist Marielaina Perrone, DDS. That being said, we get it, you don’t always want to brush when you’re exhausted—but you really should. So, to cut corners, instead of waiting until bedtime to brush those pearly whites, do it just after you’ve finished dinner. This might also help deter after-dinner munchies (double bonus!).

When it comes to flossing, doing it twice a day would be great, but you really just need to make sure you’re getting it done once a day to fight gum disease. This once-a-day floss can be done when you brush after dinner or even at another time, when you have more motivation, during the day.

As for mouthwash, you don’t really need it. Properly brushing and flossing are enough to do the trick, so unless you just can’t sleep without the minty aftertaste of mouthwash, you can skip it.

Hair Washing
If you’re debating washing and styling your hair before bed because you know you won’t have time in the morning, just go ahead and skip it. Skipping washes is actually beneficial for the health, color preservation and shine of your hair. Washing too frequently depletes the healthy oils from your hair leaving it lackluster and even frizzy.
In the morning, if your hair is looking oily, spritz on dry shampoo (or even baby powder) and style as usual. Worst case, you can always rock the low, chic bun look.

Eye Health

In an ideal world, you would only wear your contacts maximum eight hours per day, but we all slip up on that. If you do wear contacts, though, make sure you wash your hands thoroughly and remove your lenses before bed (or earlier, if you can). Contact lens overuse can cause serious, painful damage to your eyes by blocking oxygen from reaching your cornea amongst other things.

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