29 Expert Ways to Repair Your Skin While You Sleep

It’s every woman’s dream to wake up with perfect skin, and by making a few simple tweaks to your daily routine (and adding an innovative product to your beauty bag), it might just become a reality.

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Drink up

The easiest (and least expensive) rule to follow is to hydrate. Joy McCarthy, author of Joyous Detox, holistic nutritionist and Genuine Health Ambassador recommends drinking at least a litre of H20 overnight. “Keep it beside your bed, and if you wake up thirsty, take a couple sips. And whatever you don’t drink overnight, drink first thing in the morning before you get out of bed.” But it’s not just regular ol’ water that’ll make a difference in your skin and your sleep. McCarthy also suggests a nightly herbal detox tea. Look for ingredients like milk thistle, dandelion greens, and burdock root.

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Cut the Cheese

Dairy is known to aggravate skin, and if you’re really looking to achieve clear skin overnight, you may want to consider cutting it from your diet. McCarthy points to pasteurized dairy as a particularly bad culprit, saying “research has proven that dairy promotes acne, but particularly pasteurized dairy.”

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And the Wheat

Forget gluten, wheat seems to be the big problem with it comes to your skin and sleeping. McCarthy recommends cutting out wheat and see if your skin and sleep improves. If not, then she says try going gluten-free. “Wheat is the most problematic. People don’t realize that just cutting back on wheat can make a big difference, you don’t always have to cut out all forms of gluten.”

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And Most Importantly, the Sugar

If you’re serious about your skin and your sleep, stop eating refined sugars. “Sugar, in short, ages your skin. It promotes things like acne just by increasing insulin.” McCarthy also warns that you’re probably eating more sugar than you realize. “People aren’t reading their labels. Just because something’s natural and organic doesn’t mean it’s not packed with sugar.”

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Add Nutrients

According to Mara Vezeau, skin care expert and communications leader for Vichy Canada, to help skin repair overnight, it’s not just about what you don’t put in your body, it’s imperative that you pay attention to what you put in it, too.  She suggests maintaining “a balanced diet with nutrients, vitamins, trace elements, omega 3 and 6, and lactic cultures.” Think salmon, dark leafy greens and probiotics. McCarthy echoes that sentiment, “Eat more detox-friendly foods, like cruciferous vegetables and fermented products.”

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Take a Probiotic

Like Vezeau, McCarthy couldn’t stress this one enough, noting that a healthy gut is the foundation of beautiful skin (Some beauty brands are even including probiotics in their topical products!). “If you have healthy digestion, it means you have effective absorption of vitamins and minerals.” These vitamins and minerals are essential for overnight skin repair. “A probiotic isn’t just for people who have digestion issues. As a nutritionist, a probiotic is something I recommend to everybody.” She suggests adding a fermented protein powder to morning smoothies, and taking Genuine Health’s new advanced gut health probiotic every day.

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Stick to a Schedule

Vezeau also recommends sticking to a consistent sleep schedule, “Try to maintain a regular sleep schedule, sleep at least seven to eight hours per night.” This will ensure you get a good night’s sleep, which will help skin repair. Not only will you awake feeling refreshed, but your skin will look refreshed, too. McCarthy notes that, “our skin cells regenerate the most when we’re sleeping, so even if you do nothing else, just getting a good night’s sleep is key for your skin cells to do their job.”

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You may not realize it, but stress can wreak havoc on your complexion and your sleep schedule. Vezeau suggests taking a little time for yourself each day for meditation, which will combat the insomnia and the effects of stress, improving your sleep quality in the process.

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Staying active is one of the easiest ways to improve your sleep and your skin. Vezeau suggests doing at least a half an hour of exercise every day. The endorphins will help you sleep and help your skin repair each night.

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When All Else Fails…

Sometimes just tweaking your routine isn’t enough. If you want to really ramp up overnight skin repair, it might be time to call in the big guns: try one of these innovative new products to kick complexion restoration into overdrive.

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Top of the Class

Reservatrol B E gets an A+ from us for its high-dose of pure, stable resveratrol, synergistically enhanced with 0.5% baicalin and 1% pure vitamin E. It fights free radicals, reverses the signs of aging and improves radiance. Basically, if you need an overnight pick-me-up, this’ll do the trick.

SkinCeuticals Resveratrol B E, $170 available at medi-spas and dermatologists’ offices.

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One-Stop Shop

This all-in-one serum is packed with retinol, a vitamin known for its anti-aging properties. It’s been proven to reduce fine lines, wrinkles and crepiness, all while revealing younger-looking skin.

Neostrata All-In-One Night Serum, $86 available at Shopper’s Drug Mart, neostrata.ca and well.ca.

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Smooth as Silk

It’s not just about what you put on your skin, but what you put your skin on. Sleeping on a silk pillowcase will reduce the development of wrinkles, since skin slips and slides instead of being pulled and smushed.

Cilque pillowcase, $69 available at cilque.com.

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Faking It

Fake a full eight hours of sleep with this magic moisturizer, formulated with PhytoCellTech Alp Rose stem cell technology and Bio-Protect complex, two ingredients that help restore skin’s moisture levels and protect it from environmental aggressors.

Rodial Stem Cell Magic Gel, $75 available at beautyboutique.ca.

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Dried Out

If your skin’s suffering, your nighttime skin care routine may not be to blame. Try infusing your bedroom air with a little extra moisture (this one gets bonus points for looking like a piece of home décor).

Kiera Grace Ultrasonic LED Light Diffuser-Humidifier, $60 available at kitchenstuffplus.com.

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Overnight Success

No matter what your skin concern, Sephora has a sleeping mask that’ll fight it. From mattifying to plumping, one of these 11 gel-creams will give you the results you’re looking for.

Sephora Collection Sleeping Mask, $5 available at Sephora.

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Go for Gold

If you’re skin’s lacking a little lustre this season, there’s an easy way to give it a glow (and it’s a lot cheaper than a plane ticket). This overnight mask packs some serious hydration and leaves behind a perfect natural-looking tan.

Vita Liberta Night Mask, $56 available at Sephora.

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Oil and Water

If oily skin is one of your main complexion concerns, this gel-cream will kick it to the curb. The rice powder removes sebum while you sleep, revealing a refreshed matte finish when you wake.

Lierac Magnificence Nuit Gel-in-Balm, $90 available at lierac.ca.

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Peel Love

This overnight peel is formulated with glycolic acid, a magic ingredient loved by beauty junkies and skin care fanatics. Spread it on before bed and wake up with a new and improved complexion.

Vichy Idealia Peeling, $40 available at vichy.ca.

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Message in a Bottle

This innovative new formula introduces a two-step process to make sure this potent new formula is as fresh and effective as possible. Made with Himalayan red grape, red rice ferment, plantain, a vitamin C and antioxidant complex, liposome complex, it’ll reverse signs of aging and resist the signs of aging in the future.

Philosophy Time in a Bottle Serum, $85 available at Sephora, Shoppers Drug Mart and Hudson’s Bay.

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Coming Up Roses

Described as a “facial in a jar,” this rose-infused brightening night cream is the cure for whatever ails your skin, from dark spots to fine lines.

Korres Wild Rose Advanced Brightening Sleeping Facial, $59 available at beautyboutique.ca.

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Bright Lights

Black Truffle extract isn’t just good for the stomach, it’s good for the skin. This brightening mask is infused with the luxe ingredient, along with capsules of amber, pearl, and gold powder to reveal luminous skin overnight.

Belif First Aid Brightening Mask, $39. Retail locations listed online.

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Sensitive Soul

Ease your wrinkle worries with a night cream made for even the most sensitive skin. It’s infused with three extra gentle ingredients: cotton extract to replenish and protect, aloe to soothe and rice extract to moisturize.

Burt’s Bees Sensitive Night Cream, $25 available at burtsbees.ca.

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Sweet Soother

Aloe vera is a skin saviour for good reason. This safe-for-sensitive-skin moisturizing cream comforts, cools and calms skin while you sleep.

Aloe Soothing Night Cream, $22 available at The Body Shop.

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Skin Strengthener

This beauty breakthrough helps lock in your nighttime repair product, creating a barrier between your skin and everything in the world that wants to ruin it.

Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Recovery Mask-in-Oil, $105 available at Estée Lauder.

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Time Rewind

If your feel like your skin’s falling flat, this cream is for you. Made with Lipsome Encapsulated Retinol and wild Indigo seed extract, it improves collagen production, breaks down cortisol (which improves skin tone) and helps repair and detox stressed-out skin.

Eve Lom Time Retreat Intensive Night Cream, $182 available at Murale in April 2017.

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Peel and Wake

Wake up to a fresh, new complexion with this overnight peel cream. Containing six hydroxy acids (AHA and BHA), this resurfacing night cream helps eliminate fine lines, brighten dull skin and reduces the appearance of dark spots and imperfections.

Filorga Sleep and Peel, $95 available at beautyboutique.ca.

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Deep Conditioning

If the winter weather’s wreaked havoc on your skin, it’s time to call in a product with super powers—and this ultra-moisturizing mask fits the bill. Load on a thick layer and your skin will look brand new by morning.

Strivectin Overnight Replenishing Moisture Mask, $68 available at Shoppers Drug Mart and Hudson’s Bay.

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Boot Camp

This overnight treatment does everything a night cream should: it’s extra moisturizing, it improves the appearance of fine lines and its quick-absorbing formula won’t make a mess of your favourite pillowcase.

Boots No7 Protect and Perfect Intense Night Cream, $29 available at beautyboutique.ca.

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Fancy Face

Infused with immortelle (known as the everlasting flower), this luxurious night cream gives skin a new lease on life. Don’t believe us? How about this: almost 100 per cent of users said their skin felt rejuvenated and repaired after just one night.

L’Occitane Immortelle Precious Night Cream, $92 available at L’Occitane.

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