Washing your face at night is important for skin and eye health

According to experts, repeatedly leaving makeup on while you sleep can clog pores and cause acne. Washing your face before you go to bed has positive effects for your skin and will help you wake up feeling refreshed. (Photo Illustration by Lauren Nagle | The Collegian)

We’ve all done it before: we stumble back into our homes after a late night with makeup still slathered on our faces. Yet, our exhaustion bar is full like a Sims character and we can’t seem to make it our bathroom sink to remove our makeup and properly cleanse our skin. Instead, we climb into bed and wake up with the voice inside our head screaming, “You slept with your makeup on!”

The good news is sleeping with your makeup on once isn’t necessarily bad, and the effects are not permanent. It is, though, a slippery slope. If makeup is constantly slept in, eyelashes can stick together and hydrating your face with moisturizer can even be difficult. What’s even more shocking is that in a survey conducted by the Daily Mail in July 2013, one third of women admitted to sleeping with makeup on not just once, but twice a week.

Sleeping with even eye makeup on can be detrimental to your skin. In a December 2012 Huffington Post article, founder of Clear Clinic Dr. Eric Schweiger said that “sleeping in your eye makeup will not cause fine lines or acne on the skin, but it can still lead to problems. Mascara and eyeliner can be rubbed by your pillow and end up in your eyes, which can lead to significant eye irritation.”

Schweiger recommend keeping makeup remover pads on your nightstand for those nights when you don’t have time to properly cleanse before bed.

Additionally, wash your pillow. Oil from not only your makeup, but also from your hair, could reside in your pillow. Washing it, especially after sleeping with makeup on, can help prevent breakouts. But what happens if you continuously sleep with eye makeup on?

“If you leave your makeup on its going to clog your pores,” Ali Kurth, spa consultant at Planet Beach Contempo Spa, said.

To put it bluntly, leaving your makeup on once will clog your pores; leaving it on continuously has even more negative effects.

“There are many benefits of washing your skin,” Krisanne Reyerson, salon coordinator at Shear Dynamics Salon and Spa Above the Plaza, said. “When you don’t wash your face, the dirt and grime sticks to your face and it is easier for bacteria to adhere to something. Washing your face prevents pimples, breakouts, and creates an even pH value.”

Note that sleeping with eye makeup and foundation is the ultimate crime. In the Huffington Post article, New York City-based dermatologist Dr. Erin Gilbert said that “foundations and thick, oil-based primers are often the worst offenders. They prevent the skin from renewing itself naturally at night, causing blackheads, acne and dullness.”

Even Lauren Conrad’s the Beauty Department’s 2014 New Year’s Resolution was to wash their faces and take their makeup off every night. The Beauty Department website said, “I cannot stress how important it is to give your skin a daily eight-hour break from makeup coupled with a regimen of skincare that fights acne and hydrates.”

Overcoming Face Washing/Makeup Removing Adversity

Though taking off your makeup and washing your face can be a daunting tasks, there are products that make the job a little more exciting.

Clarisonic’s Mia ($99 according to the Sephora website) or Clarisonic alternatives are the new rage. With a hefty price tag they can certainly appeal to many different types of skin types and also do the job of lathering on face wash for you. The Zoe Report advises, “(To) take a day or two break in between uses to allow cell reproduction to happen naturally.” This is especially true if you’re using an acidic face wash.

“I wash my face every night so my pores don’t clog and I always wake up feeling fresher and cleaner in the morning when I wash my face.” Kristi Katlin, sophomore in management, said.

Invest in fun face washes.

Soap and Glory’s Face Soap and Clarity Vitamin C Facial Wash is raved about by YouTube users. It’s nondrying and works with many skin types. Plus, 16.9 ounces is only $15 on Sephora.com.

Philosophy’s Purity Made Simple ($36 for 16 ounces according to the Sephora website) is an award winning facial cleanser that not only tones the skin, but also helps remove makeup and hydrates. Definitely a face wash for those who don’t take their makeup off every night.

Clinique’s Take the Day Off Makeup Remover For Lids, Lashes, and Lips ($18.50 according to the Sephora website) is also an eye and lip makeup remover. Keep some by your bed side and some tissues for when you come back from a late night out for a quick removal.

Even though the price tag on Estee Lauder’s Take it Away LongWear Makeup Remover Towelettes is $20, according to Sephora, these are definitely a high end alternative to when you really, really, really don’t want to wash your face. They leave your face hydrated and even soften your skin.

Ultimately, realizing that sleeping with makeup on is detrimental to your skin is the first step. It’s so important while your young to treat your skin well. You may not need high-end products now, but keep in mind that although you’re not fixing a current problem, you can still work towards preventing them.