It’s often said that timing is everything— and your beauty regimen is no exception. In fact, keeping an eye on the clock can be a powerful key to maintaining gorgeous skin and hair. Why? Because the time of day and the order in which you apply beauty products can make a big difference in their effectiveness. “During the day, our skin is busy working to defend against the elements and filtering out toxins in the environment,” says Elizabeth Trattner, A.P., L.Ac., D.O.M., an acupuncture physician and integrative medical practitioner specializing in skincare and nutrition in Miami Beach, Fla. “So in the morning, it’s important to put on products that nourish and protect.” Nighttime, on the other hand, is ideal for exfoliation and products that heal and rejuvenate. “When you sleep, you have a good eight-hour stretch when you’re out of the sun and not touching your face or sweating very much, which all can affect how well products work,” says Gervaise Gerstner, M.D., assistant clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical School in New York City and a consulting dermatologist for L’Oréal Paris. “And some products contain ingredients that can be deactivated by sunlight, so they’re best applied at night.” For the hours in between, selecting the right pampering pick-me-ups will fortify you on the beauty battlefront—fighting the assault of everything from free radicals to fatigue. So follow our round-the-clock recommendations and you’re sure to be beautiful, no matter what time it is.
7 am: Rise and shine
Time to look alive and ready yourself for whatever the day throws your way.
Glossify Cleanse tresses with a shampoo and conditioner containing plant keratin, which mimics the natural fibrous structural proteins in your hair. These proteins add body by coating hair fibers, making your locks look thicker. If hair is damaged, products containing protein can also fill in some of the gaps in the outer cuticle, so hair looks smoother and shinier. a) Ojon Super Sleek Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner ($24 and $25; sephora.com) contain Ojon oil, azurite and plant keratin.
Protect Fight off daily exposure to aging UVA and UVB rays and other free radicals by applying at least a quarter-size amount of a moisturizer containing SPF 30 all over—and not just in summer. “The sun’s rays can damage skin all year round,” says Trattner. b) DermaDoctor Photodynamic Therapy Sunlight-Activated Laser Lotion with SPF 30 ($85; sephora.com) supplements vitamin D with sun-dried shiitake mushroom extract.
Depuff Swollen eyes aren’t just caused by insufficient rest, but also sinus problems, consuming too much sodium or alcohol, a genetic predisposition, even MSG—all of which can contribute to fluid retention, says Trattner. “Lying flat causes fluids to accumulate under and around the delicate eye area,” she adds. To the rescue: an eye roller. “Using a roller manually speeds lymphatic drainage,” explains Gerstner. c) Garnier Ultra-Lift Anti-Wrinkle Eye Roller ($15; drugstore.com) smoothes fine lines with linoleic acid, not a harsh retinol.
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