The Dreamiest Nighttime Skincare Routine Step by Step

nighttime skincare routine ISDIN step by step
Reading: 5 minutes

As evening falls and drenches your home with the dreamy semi-darkness, tackling an entire skincare routine at night may be the last thing you want to do, especially after a long day. 

Or, on the other hand, you may find yourself tempted by an elaborate routine du jour, hoping that the more you pile on the products the more benefits your skin will reap.

But here’s the hot gossip: your skin can only absorb so much. And if products aren’t used in the correct order, they’re not absorbed to their full capacity, rendering them less effective. 

That’s why it’s less about adding a multitude of products and more about a simple yet full-optimized, layered routine you can tackle night after night without fail.

(Remember you can take our customized skincare quiz to discover your skin type, personalized routine & exclusive tips)

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But first, why does your skincare routine matter at night?

It’s simple: the skin conducts a natural repairing activity to try to reverse the damage suffered during the day. This means your skin is primed for nourishing ingredients that work overnight! Why miss out on this opportunity to care for and repair your skin?

Well, it may be that you find yourself strapped for time right before bed. Or perhaps you’re guilty of letting the drowsy-sleepy version of you skip the routine. If this sounds like you, try doing it earlier in the evening. 

The sleep-wake cycle regulator, melatonin, is released when it gets dark out, triggering your skin to move into the rest and repair mode. This means, why you still may want to complete your bedtime routine—brushing your teeth, switching off electronics, or setting the thermostat—right before you hop into a haven of crisp bedsheets, it’s okay to tackle your nighttime skincare routine when it suits you best—such as during your evening shower or post-gym sesh!

The best nighttime skincare routine 

We understand everyone’s skin is unique, so consider this a template on your quest for the perfect evening routine. 

“The Isdinceutics overnight regimen with melatonin is one of my favorite recommendations, especially after the summer. The three-step routine works so well together to provide repairing, restorative results with an anti-aging focus. ”

Dr. Michelle Henry

Step 1: Cleanser

Indispensable in the morning, even if you have dry or sensitive skin, this step is especially vital in the evening to get rid of makeup (if you wear any) and any grime, dirt, and oil accumulated throughout the day.

Try: Micellar Cleanser

Reaching for a formula that is effective enough to melt away makeup but still gentle on the skin, is a no-brainer. Using Micellar Cleanser removes makeup, cleanses, tones, and hydrates in one swipe, meaning you can keep your routine as simple as possible. 

How to properly cleanse with micellar water

Soak a cotton pad, and beginning with the lips:

  • Gently wipe upper and lower lips separately
  • Place another soaked cotton pad on each closed eye and gently press on your eyelids for a few seconds, then sweep the pad outwards
  • Use another soaked cotton pad for the face, starting at the center and wiping outwards. Repeat for each portion of the face, or as necessary
ISDIN Micellar water - nighttime skincare routine

Step 2: Eye contour cream

Next, move on to eye contour cream. The skin around the eye is the thinnest part of the face which not only means a designated cream for this area is essential but also that eye contour cream should precede face products. That’s because products designed for the face, when too close to the eye, can become irritating. Applying eye contour cream first will ensure this delicate area absorbs the correct ingredients.

Try: Vital Eyes 

An eye contour cream formulated with melatonin, Vital Eyes works while you sleep to combat oxidative stress caused throughout the day. Take advantage of your skin’s repair mode to help improve the signs of skin aging like fine lines and wrinkles.

How to apply an eye contour cream

The key is to be gentle around this area. Use your ring finger—it’s the weakest of your digits, ensuring you never apply too much pressure here. Gently tap the product into the under-eye area—not too close to the eye—and avoid pulling.

With Vital Eyes, you can then use the cooling applicator tool to extend the cream and enjoy a light lymphatic drainage massage. For best results, slowly and gently move the applicator from your inner eye contour corner outwards, with smooth, repeated strokes. And voilà! You’ll help to get any accumulated fluids moving and begin improving circulation.

ISDIN Vital Eyes - nighttime skincare routine

Step 3: Serum

Frequently left out of skincare routines, it’s actually the product that does much of the heavy lifting. Serums are ultra-concentrated treatments that deliver a shock of rich skin-loving nutrients. The key here is that some worry if such luxurious items are effective. But the real trick is to deliver the serum as close to the skin as possible—that is, on your clean, bare face. 

In the evening, opt for a serum with reparative properties with anti-aging effects, to aid your skin while it’s in its now restorative state. 

Try: Melatonik

Made with melatonin, bakuchiol, and Vitamin C, this serum is packed with ingredients that stimulate your skin’s natural antioxidant defenses. 

How to apply serums, ampoules, and oils

You’ll want to follow the instructions of the product, but the general idea is to add the serum to the palm of your hand first and warm up the product. Then, gently massage it over your face. A luxurious product like Melatonik will absorb quickly, not leaving any greasy residue. 

Tip: Don’t skip your neck and decolletage! Also prone to loss of elastin and collagen over time, it’ll enjoy soaking up a lovely serum as well.

ISDIN Melatonik Serum - nighttime skincare routine

Step 4: Night cream

When your skin is dry, it doesn’t look or feel its best. So now that your skin has been refreshed and treated, it’s time to seal it all in with a hydrating moisturizer that’ll keep your skin nourished throughout the night. 

Try: Age Contour Night

With a formulation rich in antioxidants like melatonin, peptides, and hydrating ingredients, it provides triple action repair that helps undo the day’s damage, reduces visible signs of aging, and calms the skin.

How to apply a face cream

Unlike with a serum where you would gently apply and let the product do the leg work, you can apply more pressure with a face cream and massage gently into the skin until it’s been completely absorbed.

ISDIN Age Contour Night

The benefits of melatonin in your skincare routine

As you may have noticed, melatonin is a hero ingredient in many of our favorite evening-specific products (Vital Eyes, Melatonik, Age Contour Night). A vessel for skin repair when your skin needs it the most, a melatonin-packed routine gives your skin more chances at powerful repair at every stage of your routine, so you wake up to dreamy, healthy skin all over. “The Isdinceutics overnight regimen with melatonin is one of my favorite recommendations, especially after the summer, says Dr. Michelle Henry. “The three-step routine works so well together to provide repairing, restorative results with an anti-aging focus. ”

And may we add? Your skin is unique and an evening routine should be one you are excited to complete. Look for luxurious textures that give you a spa-like experience and find an evening routine that works for you. 

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Sources and references:
Plikus MV, Van Spyk EN, Pham K, Geyfman M, Kumar V, Takahashi JS, Andersen B. The circadian clock in skin: implications for adult stem cells, tissue regeneration, cancer, aging, and immunity.
J Biol Rhythms. 2015 Biol Rhythms. 2015 Jun;30(3):163-82
Matsui M.S. et al. Biological Rhythms in the Skin. Int J Mol Sci 2016

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Article written and reviewed by:

Amy is a content strategist who turned a part-time obsession with skincare into a full-time passion. Her experience as a creative storyteller includes a range of lifestyle and technology topics across Washington D.C. and Barcelona. What's in her travel bag? Eye contour cream and sunscreen, always.

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