What happens in Vegas may stay in Vegas, but the traces of an all-night party can linger on our complexions long after we've waged our last bets. Whether we're rocking out in a city that never sleeps or simply up all night working, the aesthetic aftermath can be brutal; research shows that our skin cells repair themselves while we're sleeping, which means that skipping out on beauty sleep can manifest blemishes, blotchiness and dry and flaky skin.
So for those can't-stop-won't-stop days, we offer this 24-hour skin-care guide to help you keep your regimen on track and complexion radiant.
Morning: Prep for your long day ahead by cleansing the face (yes, even if you washed it the night before), applying an antioxidant-rich serum (to protect against free radicals) and moisturizing with SPF (remember, UVA rays—which are associated with premature aging—are strong enough to penetrate through windows).
Afternoon: By now, your AM sun protection has likely worn off (the American Academy of Dermatology reminds us to reapply sunscreen every two hours). If going outside, strengthen skin care protection by applying a broad-spectrum SPF of 30 or more 15 minutes before heading out. Now is also a great time to quickly clean the skin before adding more sunscreen. If you don't have access to a sink or simply don't want to ruin your perfect smokey eye, use a cleansing wipe instead.
Evening: When getting ready for your night out, it's easy to focus on wardrobe, accessories, hair and makeup—and entirely forget about skin care in the process (hey, it's a lot to think about!). Since you still have plenty of mileage to go before hitting the sack, schedule an extra 10 minutes now to tend to your skin.
Double cleanse the skin using a cleansing oil (to remove tough makeup and surface dirt) and a powder, gel or clay-based cleanser (which is geared to cleanse the pores more deeply). Next, apply an antioxidant serum (since your skin will continue to battle airborne free radicals and pollution). Apply a moisturizer to help revitalize skin for the night, like Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Cream Moisturizer, which is formulated with peptides to hydrate and brighten the skin (the last thing we want is someone telling us we look tired come 10 PM).
Early AM: After burning the midnight oil (and then some) and it's finally time to crash, the last thing we want to do is drag ourselves into the bathroom for yet another face washing. But guess what? At this stage in the game, it's more important than ever to give your skin a little TLC. Remember that reparative work we talked about? It'll kick in once you doze off.
Give your skin cells a clean slate to work with by washing the face and applying a hydrating, firming or anti-aging serum, depending on your skin's needs. If you've been inside and subject to skin-dehydrating air conditioning all night, it's particularly important to add moisture back into the skin. Next apply an anti-aging moisturizer stocked with powerful hydrators—like glycerin, dimethicone and vitamin B3.
Finally, treat your skin to a full eight hours of sleep. The shut-eye will not only work wonders for your energy level—it will give for your skin cells time to incorporate the nutrients from serums and moisturizers.
Because the best way to answer the, "Where were you all night?" question is to sidestep it entirely—with bright and glowing skin.