How Wearing Makeup To Bed Affects Your Face

How Wearing Makeup To Bed Affects Each Part Of Your Face

wearing makeup to bed
Photo: Bryon Summers for StyleBlazer

Look: We’ve all heard plenty on the dangers of wearing makeup to bed, but what we don’t know is exactly how our go-to mascaras and foundations affect each part of our face.  Sure, we thought that poorly removed bronzers and blushes simply irritated the skin, but many expert dermatologists find that snoozing in makeup goes beyond a breakout and a blemish, as lingering products cause a whole lot more problems for the skin.

“Makeup attracts harmful free radicals throughout the day and these free radicals lead to collagen breakdown, aging skin faster,” says Dr. Joel Schlessinger, board-certified dermatologist and RealSelf contributor.

Accelerated aging aside, Dr. Schlessinger cautions that leaving on makeup while sleeping can cause unwanted damage to all parts of your complexion if you aren’t careful. For the full beauty breakdown on this popular skincare topic, here’s exactly how wearing makeup to bed affects each part of your face.


wearing makeup to bed
Photo: Bryon Summers for StyleBlazer

Removing heavy eye makeup can be a chore, but not taking the time for proper removal can only make things worse for that area.  Mascara and eyeliner can easily transfer into your eyes while you sleep, and not only does this cause redness and irritation overnight, but poorly removed eye makeup can ignite eye infections you probably wouldn’t want to deal with, explains Dr. Schlessinger.

“Sleeping in eye makeup can definitely irritate the skin and cause inflammation. This often leads to the formation of a stye, which is a small, inflamed bump on the eyelid,” he says.

And while lingering shadows and liners can wreak havoc on the eye area, sleeping in concealer products can also danger the skin surrounding the eyes.

“Dark shadows under eyes are often caused by tiny blood vessels that are visible just beneath the skin or darkened pigmentation,” says Schlessinger. “Although it’s not a direct cause, sleeping in concealer can prevent the skin’s natural cell turnover, contributing to dark circles under eyes.”


wearing makeup to bed
Photo: Bryon Summers for StyleBlazer

Neglecting to remove eye makeup can surely cause dryness, redness, irritation and infection, but failing to remove mascara before you sleep can also cause some trouble for your lashes too.

Lashes are extremely delicate to begin with, and leaving mascara on overnight can cause them only to become weaker and more damaged, says Dr. Schlessinger. “Leaving mascara on overnight can cause eyelashes to become brittle, break easily and even shed faster,” he says.


stock image- Photo: Bryon Summers for StyleBlazer
Photo: Bryon Summers for StyleBlazer
Being that lots of lip cosmetics can be drying, wearing lipstick on a daily basis zaps lips of their natural moisture. To take good care of your pout, removing lipstick every night is highly recommended.

To adequately combat dryness, applying a hydrating lip balm will help moisturize, soften and smooth chapped lips, Dr. Schlessinger suggests. “I recommend using a one percent hydrocortisone balm like the FixMySkin Healing Lip Balm Vanilla,” says Schlessinger. “This product moisturizes lips with shea butter and cocoa butter, while healing skin irritation with hydrocortisone.”


stock image- Photo: Bryon Summers for StyleBlazer
Photo: Bryon Summers for StyleBlazer
Probably the biggest beauty of them all comes sleeping in facial makeup, which can easily clog pores if left on overnight. But aside from causing redness and inflammation, lingering concealer and foundation products can collect free radicals and pollutants throughout the day, ultimately speeding up the aging process while you sleep.

Going to bed in foundation products can also clog the pores’ sebaceous glands, leading to acne breakouts. Clogged pores can also tend to appear larger, since they are filled with debris, oil and other impurities, says experts like Dr. Schlessinger.

Why Removal Is Key

stock image- Photo: Bryon Summers for StyleBlazer
Photo: Bryon Summers for StyleBlazer
You’ve probably heard this beauty tip nonstop, but cleansing your face proves to be crucial, as our skin regenerates overnight to naturally heal itself. Leaving makeup on while you get some shut eye only disrupts this process, causing the skin’s collagen to break down. And with low collagen levels, often comes fine lines and wrinkles no one wants to see.

To break bad beauty habits and find your best makeup remover match, it’s important to select your product based on the kind of makeup you’re wearing.  For starters, an oil-based formula is best for breaking down the pigment in water-resistant mascara and eyeliner. Meanwhile a good cleansing water is great for those with sensitive skin and eyes.

But if you’re in a hurry, makeup wipes prove to be viable option, being that they are fast, disposable and convenient. However, if wipes happen to be your weapon of choice, Dr. Schlessinger advises to shop for gentle formulas for irritation free removal.

“Most makeup wipes are designed to be used on the entire face so if you’re going to remove eye makeup with this method, make sure the wipes you choose are gentle enough to use on the eye area,” he says.

For best removal action, it’s best to take off makeup (with the help of makeup remover) before cleansing. This notion eliminates stubborn cosmetics before you cleanse, allowing your face wash to eliminate other impurities like oil, dirt and debris.

And while it’s tempting to rely on a sonic powered brush to wash your face, Schlessinger warns against relying on the aid of an electronic cleansing brush, being that brushes like these, aren’t exactly suited for the delicate eye area.

“You wouldn’t want to use your Clarisonic to remove eye makeup because even the sensitive brush head would be too harsh on the delicate skin around the eyes,” adds Schlessinger.

With so many reasons why you shouldn’t sleep in your makeup, it’s probably best to start adopting an easy makeup removal regimen that won’t take up too much of your time. For a helpful reminder before bed, try leaving some makeup removing wipes on your nightstand to ensure a fully cleansed face, right before you hit the sack.


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