How to Upgrade Your Nightly Skincare Routine

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Things that are important: A good skincare routine. Things that are hard to remember: The order in which one goes about said skincare routine. And for the record, the order does matter—it makes a difference in how effective each step is. To help clear things up, we’ve laid it all out for you and your soon-to-be flawless skin.

1

Switch to a Makeup-Removing Cleanser

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Skip those foamy or gel cleansers and try micellar water instead. This French staple is made up of tiny oil molecules suspended in a base of soft water that sweeps away all traces of makeup and dirt without stripping away natural oils.

2

Experiment with a Microfoliant

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Exfoliating every day might irritate your face, but it’s an important step to add one to three times per week to slough off dry and dull cells. Instead of products with harsh granules, look for an exfoliating powder (also called a microfoliant) that feels gentle when scrubbed onto the skin, or buy an exfoliating brush with soft bristles.

3

Try a Moisturizing Toner

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Toners get a bad rap for being super drying, but as long as you pick one sans alcohol, it’ll regulate your skin’s oil production and pH level and ready it to absorb serums and moisturizers. Still unsure? Transfer your toner to a spray bottle and use it as an overall toning mist. That way, it's light and you won't waste product accidentally dumping too much onto your cotton pad.

4

Find a Serum That Works for You

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You swear by your moisturizer, but if something needs special attention, it’s time to call in the big guns: serums. A few drops of these elixirs can do a whole lot of magic. Midnight Recovery Concentrate by Kiehl’s earned the nickname “hangover cure in a bottle” because of its rejuvenating qualities, and Estée Lauder’s Advanced Night Repair is a cult favorite for fighting fine lines.

5

Invest in a Retinol Cream

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Long considered the gold standard in anti-aging by most dermatologists, this vitamin A derivative helps to increase cell turnover (which slows down as you age). What this means for you: a brighter and plumper complexion. If you have sensitive skin, look for an over-the-counter retinol and layer it over your moisturizer to further minimize irritation.

6

Don’t Forget Your Neck

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Nora Ephron once wrote, “Our faces are lies and our necks are the truth. You have to cut open a redwood tree to see how old it is, but you wouldn’t if it had a neck.” Keep your décolletage in tip-top shape by using an anti-wrinkle night cream. Place a couple dabs on your bustline, then give yourself a gentle mini massage as you work it up toward your chin. For more beauty products, click here.