From The Straits Times    |

Most of us use the same skincare products for both the day and the night, citing convenience and Singapore’s humid weather as reasons for this.

But there’s actually so much more you can get from having an “amped up” nightly routine.

New skin cells grow faster while you sleep, repairing the damage caused by stress, pollution and the sun. (That means fighting “spotty”, dull skin and large pores, if we really need to spell it out.)

To get you started, here are six tips on how you can better treat your skin at night:

We’ve been going on long enough about how you should never go to bed with makeup on. So double cleansing is a must if you’ve got on a full-face of makeup. Start with an oil cleanser – Algenist’s Genius Ultimate Anti-Ageing Melting Cleanser is our latest obsession. This gel-to-oil cleanser doesn’t drip or trickle down your arm as you massage it into the skin. It leaves the skin feeling supple, too.

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Follow up with an additional cleanser – foaming, gel or cream, whatever you prefer. This will help to remove any impurities or makeup residue left on the skin and better prep your skin receive active ingredients from your nightly serums.

The skin at the neck is a lot thinner than the face, which means you’ve got a higher chance of getting wrinkles at a younger age if you don’t care for it properly. Our constant use of mobile devices can also cause neck lines to develop faster.

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When you’re done with your nightly skincare routine, spend some time to moisturise your neck before you head off to bed. Night creams and sleeping packs with firming properties, like Clinique’s Repairwear Sculpting Night Cream or Fresh’s Black Tea Overnight sleeping mask can help, too.

Most of us can’t live without air-conditioning in hot and humid Singapore. But as all OLs should know, excessive exposure to air-conditioning can dry out the skin. So if you sleep in an air-conditioned environment, be sure to take extra care in keeping your skin hydrated throughout the night.

Look for “water-holding” ingredients like hyaluronic acid and collagen, which help to lock moisture into the skin. Some hyaluronic acid serums are powerful enough in retaining moisture on its own if you’ve got oily skin.

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Those with normal to dry skin, you can always mix a hyaluronic acid serum, like the one from Skin Inc, with a light, day moisturiser. Biotherm’s gel-textured Aquasource is a great example.

Some of the best skin renewing and brightening ingredients are best kept for the night because of their photosensitivity, making you more susceptible to dark spot formation when used in the day.

Glycolic acid and vitamin A – retinol in particular – are the most common ingredients that are sensitive to light. Chemical peel addicts will know this; doctors and aestheticians always emphasise the need for sunscreen after, say, a mandelic peel.

Some of these peel-type products don’t come cheap, so make sure you’re reaping the most benefits instead of causing harm to your skin.

The night is the best time to let your skin soak in all the good ingredients, but always do it in moderation. Dark eye circles are a pain, we know. But sometimes, the idea of “the more the better” can give you more problems instead.

For one, over applying your eye cream can cause puffiness in the morning. You’re getting swollen eyes from the sunken eyes you had the night before – not much of an improvement if you ask us.

Next, too much eye cream can give you milia – not pretty, either. A pain to get rid of, too.

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So always use your products in moderation; go for lighter textures that work in the long run, rather than a quick-fix solution. Cooling gel textured eye creams or serums, like Creme Simon’s Multi-Benefits Eye Treatment Gel work best for our weather, and can help to reduce puffy eyes in the morning, too.

Photography: Vernon Wong; Art direction: Michelle Tham; Hair and makeup: Dollei Seah, Lydia Thong and Vicky Lee of Makeup Entourage (9111 1919), using Shu Uemura; Model: Lee Soon Young/Nu Models