Your Skin Questions Answered
Night Creams, Toners, and More
Are night creams necessary? Definitely not if you have oily skin, says Dr. Sadick. "Night creams are usually richer than moisturizers that are worn during the day, making them too heavy for oily skin. They're more beneficial if you have dry or sensitive skin." If you can't bear to sleep without something on your face, water-based or lightweight moisturizers are your best bet. Look for formulations with either vitamins C and A, which help repair skin, or alpha-hydroxy acids, to smooth fine lines.
Shouldn't skin feel squeaky clean after using a cleanser? "That's definitely a myth," says Dr. Min-Wei Christine Lee, MDMPh, Cosmetic Dermatologic Surgeon and Director of East Bay Laser and Skin Care Center in Walnut Creek, California. After cleansing, your skin should feel refreshed, not tight. (Tight skin means you're in need of the natural oils that keep breakouts at bay.) Wash with warm water, and pick a gentle, soap-free cleanser like Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser ($10.50).
Toner or not toner? What should I do? "If you're using a good cleanser that removes all traces of makeup, toner can be overkill, because it can strip the skin of moisture," says Dr. Lee. But if you like the purifying feeling of using a toner, try to avoid using one with a high alcohol content, which can be drying.
The skin around my eyes isn't wrinkled. Should I use an eye cream as a preventative measure? It's never too soon to incorporate an eye cream into your routine. "Start using an eye cream if you're over 30 years old," advises Dr. Bank. Choose one that moisturizes and is full of active, good-for-you ingredients, like hyaluronic acid, which moisturizes by holding water in skin, and kojic acid, to lighten pigmentation spots.
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