It is commonly said that cell renewal (repairing damaged skin) happens mostly at night, making it the perfect time to treat skin, but to my mind the best thing about night skincare is that you can slather on a layer of good stuff and let it do its work without worrying about what you look like or how it will sit under make-up. These are our favourites that gave real results on real faces, smoothing, boosting moisture, reducing wrinkles and generally bringing a whole new meaning to the phrase “beauty sleep”.
1. Givenchy Hydra Sparkling Night Recovery Moisturising Mask/Cream: £43.50, Escentual
Givenchy is not well-known for its skincare range, but this refreshing, gel-like, cucumber-scented cream should put it firmly on the map. Our tester gave it a glowing review: ‘My skin feels very clean and fresh when I wake up, as if the skin is energised. Having used it for a few weeks, my face is clear from spots and well-moisturised, which is a hard balance to find.’ Use in small amounts daily or in a thicker layer for an overnight treatment.
2. The Estee Edit by Estee Lauder Pink Peony Overnight Water Pack: £34, Selfridges
This promises to deliver a “mega-shot of healthy hydration” and that is exactly what this feels like. Our tester’s dry, thirsty skin (which often needs two applications of moisturiser) drank in this ultra-light water-gel and felt immediately quenched and even better by morning. Perfect for winter.
3. Lancome Energie De Vie Sleeping Mask: £42, Lancome
Energie de Vie is a clever little pot that, like the Givenchy, can be used a little every night or in a thicker layer for a real moisture boost when your skin is getting desperate. This gel-like cream is cool and soothing on the skin, giving a big injection of moisture and leaving skin glowing but not at all greasy by morning.
4. Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Flawless Future Night Cream: £42, Elizabeth Arden
The first thing to note about Flawless Future – OK, the first is that the name promises the impossible. But the second thing is that it smells delicious: sweet and almondy. It's a thick white cream, more solid than some here, which thins in your hands as it warms. It makes the list for its luxurious moisture boost but its firming effects are also notable.
5. Superfacialist by Una Brennan Neroli Super Lift Night Cream: £16.99, Boots
As well as its gorgeous scent, light texture and bargain price, our tester found Superfacialist’s cream moisturised and softened parched older skin and had a visible plumping effect on lines, particularly on the forehead, within a week. This punches way above its price tag.
6. Elemis Pro-Collagen Oxygenating Night Cream: £95, Elemis
There’s no denying that is a pricey option, but our tester described it as “fantastic” and that her skin felt much healthier after just two weeks, so we think it might just be worth it. It soaks into skin on application so there is no film left behind and it helped clear up dry stubborn dry patches and left skin looking and feeling fresh.
7. Clinique Smart Night Custom Moisturiser: £48, Clinique
From the same range as Clinique’s brilliant Smart Serum, this cream is lighter than most but our tester found it brightened, smoothed and firmer in just three weeks. Skin feels like silk after applying and it sorted out stubborn dry patches too. An excellent choice for skins aged 35+.
8. Clarins Multi-Active Night: £44, Clarins
A great option for younger skins (25 and under) that need a bit of help combatting the tell-tale signs of stress and too many late nights. It is light, just slightly thicker than a day cream, so not too heavy for those that may be spot-prone, and leaves skin plump and well-moisturised (but not swamped).
The Verdict: Night creams
For the price-conscious, Superfacialist’s option is seriously good value for money, though may be a little heavy for younger skins, while if money is no object, Elemis’s Pro-Collagen definitely delivers. But for a brilliant midpoint, we suggest you try Estee Edit’s or Givenchy’s.
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