Ahhhh sleep. Isn’t it just the best? There’s nothing quite like slipping between the sheets after a long day, feeling the warmth of your snuggly duvet and placing your head on a freshly laundered and fluffy pillow. Those forty winks tend to evade us for most of our younger years (when there are parties to attend, people to see and new things to experience sleep takes a back seat,) but as we get older they become even more essential in order for our body and mind to function effectively. I’d give anything to be able to spend longer in bed every day, or even to have a weekend go by where I didn’t need to arise from my sheets until at least the afternoon, but while I’m limited to what I’m currently managing I need to make the most of it. My evening beauty routine has become somewhat of a ritual, and I adore discovering new products to make it all the more pampering and relaxing. In the interests of letting you in on my bedtime secrets (oooh-err!) here are some of my current faves and things I’ve been reaching for every night.
Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate (£37.00)
One of those products that’s been hyped up more than a new Beyonce album, this sat on my bedside table for such a long time before I actually started to use it. It’s enriched with super hydrating and radiance boosting ingredients that include Squalane, Evening Primrose Oil and Omega-6 Fatty Acids alongside Lavender essential oil to help get you in the mood for sleep. Even though it’s an oil this is surprisingly lightweight and easy to massage into the skin, helping to stimulate blood flow and zap away any dryness. Although they claim you’ll have ‘younger looking skin by morning’ (you won’t!) the hydrated and smooth complexion that greets me in the mirror is good enough.
Ren & Now To Sleep Pillow Spray (£18.00)
Creating a pre-bedtime ritual is really important if you struggle nodding off, and a little spritz of a pillow spray can work wonders. Although this isn’t as potent or effective as my beloved This Works, it’s a beautifully scented and lighter version that’s best suited if you just like to create ambiance before you sleep. The inclusion of Frankincense, Hops and Lavender apparently brings about ‘more earthy notes and a sense of tranquility’ – but basically, it’s just quite nice.
GlamGlow Dreamduo Overnight Transforming Treatment (£42.00)
Although I’m super dubious of GlamGlow and their super expensive price points, rather begrudgingly I’ve quite enjoyed using this. The first serum contains Green Coffee, Green Tea Leaf, Antioxidants and ‘supercharged essential vitamins’ to inject the skin with much needed goodness, while the second creamy formula contains Hyaluronic Acid and Mozuku Green Algae for a boost of hydration. Undoubtedly half of the joy of this is the sweet scent and the ritual of applying it in two stages, forcing you into taking your time and massaging it in effectively, but I genuinely feel like my skin looks brighter and clearer the morning after using this. It’s become one of those I turn to when I want to look good the next day, even if I do use it sparingly – at 50p a go, you have to!
HerbFarmacy Meadowsweet Muscle Balm (£16.00)
Recently I’ve been having all sorts of issues with my hand and arm due to a repetitive strain injury that crops up every now and again (far too much typing / time spent on my phone!) and by the end of the day I’m in quite a lot of discomfort. This rich balm melts into the skin and helps to relieve soreness, thanks to the inclusion of St John’s Wort and Meadowsweet (fab for easing tension and reducing inflammation.) I massage a little into sore areas and it helps to make it feel so much better in only a few minutes, while smelling pretty fab too.
Sanoflore Rosa Angelica Baume de Rose (£27.50)
A beautiful rose scented balm that glides effortlessly over the skin, this overnight treatment doesn’t transform skin but it is a great way to look after it every day. It contains organic Damask Rose essential oil and Hydrosol to stimulate cell renewal, as well Hyaluronic Acid to help plump the skin and inject a boost of moisture; the gel-come-balm texture is luxurious without feeling heavy, making it a great one for layering or using with other products. A little goes a long way, and this French skincare brand makes me feel all fancy.
The Ordinary Adavnced Retinoid 2% (£8.00)
You can’t go wrong with a bit of Retinol to help reduce those fine lines and signs of pigmentation, and The Ordinary does affordable and effective skincare like no other. This creamy serum can be applied straight to skin, mixed or layered with other parts of your nighttime regime, absorbing well and getting to work as you slumber. Although it takes a good month or two to see the benefits of a Retinol treatment, this is one I’d recommend you giving a go if you’re starting to see those signs of ageing.
The Hero Project Hand Rehab (£15.00)
How many of you remember to apply hand cream before bed? This is the perfect nightstand accompaniment thanks to it’s subtle sweet scent and simple aesthetic, but it’s what’s inside that really makes a difference. A combination of Hyaluronic Acid and Aloe Vera provide long lasting hydration, while finely-milled Diamond Dust gently buffs away dead skin while tidying cuticles; it’s perfectly suited to use before bed, and I’ve been known to spend time massaging in two or three layers to treat my overworked hands.
Liz Earle Superskin Concentrate For Night (£39.50)
As you can tell by the fact this is practically empty, it’s one of those products I’ve been using multiple times a week for many months. It’s one of those great ‘I’m too tired to think but I know I need to apply some skincare’ gems, helping to really nourish skin without feeling really greasy or overloaded. Enriched with softening Argan and Rosehip, soothing Neroli, Lavender and Chamomile essential oils, plus antioxidant Vitamin E, it smells as good as it feels on the skin. I used this in the months leading up to my wedding and continued afterwards, reaching for it more often than anything else in a long time. It’s not cheap, but it’s a worthwhile investment.
What’s lingering on your bedside table? Have you tried any of my current faves?
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