So You Slept in Your Makeup— Now What?

So You Slept in Your Makeup— Now What?

Late nights in college happen to the best of us, and that often means forgoing your nighttime routine and crashing into bed without giving any thought to taking care of your skin. Fortunately, I’ve learned a few tips and found some skincare products that I like to combine to revive my skin the mornings after I accidentally spend all night with a full face of makeup on. Cleansing, hydrating, moisturizing, masks, and serums are essentials for this extra-care routine. Why is extra skincare necessary? Because the right routine can help your face recover from the skin nightmares that sleeping in your foundation can bring. Let’s get started and remove that makeup, shall we?

first, take it all off

When I wake up after leaving my makeup on all night, my foundation is cracked and peeling, and my mascara is crusted and clumped onto my lashes. In an effort to avoid pulling on my skin and forming premature wrinkles, I skip the skin wipes and use coconut oil to remove makeup for my first round of cleansing. Not only does this natural product take off a layer of makeup, but it also does an awesome job of melting off even the most stubborn eyeliner. I believe that coconut oil is a better substitute to makeup wipes because according to Byrdie, it removes residue without forcing you to tug and pull on your skin. Spending the night with makeup on your face is also known to cause dryness, and coconut oil helps revive extra dehydrated skin.

double-cleanse for an extra-clean face

When I’m dealing with extra-stubborn second-day makeup, I like to double-cleanse, so after removing the initial layer of buildup with coconut oil, I then wash my face with a facial cleanser. Simply removing the makeup doesn’t thoroughly clean out the pores, so the washing step is important. The Ursa Major Fantastic Face Wash ($28) that I use has very simple, natural ingredients that are unlikely to irritate my skin, which is important to me if I’ve already compromised my skin by sleeping in my makeup.

exfoliate away the residue

Last night’s lingering makeup may cause unevenness and clinging foundation that result in dry patches on the skin. Exfoliating with a scrub or mask will buff out imperfections and make your skin super smooth. I prefer masks when I’m trying to reverse the effects of sleeping in my makeup, because it feels like an extra treat for my skin rather than a step in my daily routine.

detox with a mask

Detoxifying masks will flush out any lingering makeup and fix dull skin caused by makeup smothering your pores all night. My personal favorite is the Deep Down Detox Ultra Cleansing Mud Mask ($7) from Formula 10.0.6, which contains orange and bergamot to make my skin clearer and brighter. I also love masks because not only do they often produce visible improvements, but also, the whole process is relaxing and allows you to unwind after a late night.

layer on the repairing serums

I began trying serums—like this Hada Labo Tokyo Replenishing Hydrator ($12)—in the past year and have completely fallen in love. I don’t use them every day, but when my skin needs extra attention, I will lay down one or two before applying a moisturizer. My favorite serums contain anti-aging ingredients—like vitamin C, zinc, and hyaluronic acid—that may not be found in basic skincare items like a cleanser or moisturizer. These extra-special ingredients significantly improved the clarity of my skin and added a subtle glow to it as well.

let your skin breathe

If possible, try to give your skin a break for the day and forgo makeup—it will give your skin a chance to make up for lost time. In its place, I opt for a great moisturizer. Like my cleanser, the moisturizer I turn to—Olay Total Effects Anti-Aging Face Moisturizer With SPF 15 ($17)— has pretty simple ingredients so that my skin does not become agitated. For mornings after sleeping in makeup, you could use a thicker cream to ensure maximum hydration, locking in those serums to revive your skin once and for all.

What’s your skincare ritual after a night out? Leave your tips in the comments below!

Featured photo by Briana Wilvert.

2 Comments
  1. I love the coconut oil tip! I’ve always found makeup wipes to be drying and irritating for my skin, so I will definitely try this out.

  2. I love the idea of detoxing! After a night out I usually feel gross, so by getting rid of all of the toxins is a relief! The idea of double-cleaning is also awesome! I love the idea of rinse and repeating with my face wash. Great article!

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Trending