Do we really need a specialized night cream?

A friend of mine recently signed up for Dr Haushka’s facial and she was sharing with me about Dr Hauschka’s interesting beauty philosophy and one of which is to skip the night cream.  That’s definitely different from the standard beauty regime we’re all familiar with and that is to regenerate our skin at night with a rich moisturizing cream.  

While you sleep your skin is actually hard at work regenerating itself, balancing oil production and expelling impurities. Regular application of night creams interferes with these essential tasks, and over time skin becomes less able to care for itself. Covering the skin with moisturizer 24 hours a day sends a signal to sebaceous glands to cut down on moisture production, resulting in even drier skin that becomes dependent on moisturizing products just to appear “normal.”

This is the information I picked out from their website.   In addition, Dr Hauschka believes that balanced healthy skin needs nothing more than cleansing and toning before bed and this is why their night conditioner is a water-based formula infused with rose essential oil and dynamic plant extracts that supports renewal and balances oil production. 

I haven’t tried Dr Hauschka’s products to be able to say how their night conditioner works but for my skin, I have to use some form of moisturizer or oil treatment in the night.  I have tried using just serum in the night and my skin got even oilier in a bid to moisturize itself. 

Night time regeneration process
And based on what I’ve read in various books written by beauty experts, while the cell renewal process of the skin is more intensive in the night which means it is more receptive and capable of nourishing and regenerating itself, the skin is still subject to the harmful effects of free radicals and that lower its regeneration capacity. As such, specialized beauty products are recommended to be used during that time to aid the skin’s regeneratation process and protect it from free radicals. 

However, the question that begs asking is, do we really need a specialized night cream?  A rich, emollient moisturizer that works while you sleep to visibly repair and rejuvenate age-damaged skin for example?

Depends on your skin type and skin condition
I believe it really depends on your skin type and condition. If your skin is oily, you don’t really need a rich cream. If yours is acne-proned for example, a rich cream might even aggravate the condition. What I believe is that you need to identify your skin type – whether it is dry, oily, sensitive, combination or others. Next, you need to understand your exisiting skin problems and what you would like to improve. Instead of using a rich night cream, you might be better off using a product that offers active ingredients to treat your skin problems.

Using natural carrier oils as a night time treatment
Personally, I haven’t been using a night cream consistently. I used to but I no longer do so. Instead, I now focused on using natural oils to treat my skin problems such as wrinkles, pigmentation and acne scars. I believe in using specialized ingredients and not just a cream because I found that using them consistently for many years did nothing to improve my skin drastically. So now, I’ve been alternating between using a moisturizer and natural carrier oils like sea buckthorn, rose hip or evening primrose. Sometimes I even mix them. And I’m happy to say that I’m seeing a slight improvement – results which I will share in a separate post in due course.

Well, what about you? Do you think we need a specialized night cream? Or do you use a specialized night treatment? I’m also curious to know if anyone even sleeps in just bare skin?


  1. Tine says:

    I can’t sleep with just bare skin. I’d feel dirty ?

    I have oily skin, especially around the nose, so I don’t use rich night creams. But I do use a different one from the day, which is just slightly (and I mean SLIGHTLY) heavier than the day moisturiser. Plus I use heavier serums than I do during the day. Better for me to do that than to slap on rich night creams ?

    Tine: Sounds good to me.

  2. Florence says:

    I use night cream from the brand Usana or Emu oil before bed time.These 2 products won’t make me oily when I wake up in the morning.I had never sleep with bare skin, but I did sleep with make up when I drunk! haha

    Florence: Tsk tsk…but I remember doing that when I was younger too…haha…

  3. ParisB says:

    *giggles* seriously, you must read my mind or we think alike. I have a similar article in my drafts but had no time to get it shipshape ? Good to read your thoughts on this though. I don’t use a dedicated night cream. Just a normal moisturiser.

    ParisB: It does sounds like we have the same beauty concerns… ?

  4. SimpleMe says:

    I never sleep with bare skin. Just because I think the night is the most important time period for your skin to recover. I love the nights for my skin, because then I can use night treatments. From my own experiences, whenever I use a night treatment (night cremes, sleeping masks, night serums) my skin looks much better the next morning. Though, I don’t use a night treatment every night, because my skin will get used to the night treatments and therefore won’t ‘recover’ as much.

    SimpleMe: I’m with you too about the skin recovering in the night. I like the idea of waking up looking fresh and radiant the morning after!

  5. Ms. Blacklace says:

    I actually did that in my secondary school days, sleeping without moisturiser. In fact, I didn’t use moisturiser at all. So my skin was perpetually shiny and oily.

    But after my ‘O’ levels, I started to use moisturisers and my skin improved. But still get the shine.

    Now, using jojoba and grapeseed oil as night moisturisers, I get a moisturised face in the morning that’s not too slippery with oil. Lol…

    Ms Blacklace: Slippery? Haha…that’s funny. Now you’ve reminded me too. I’ve never used moisturizer till my late teens actually!

  6. Lydia says:

    Dr. Hauschka is really great! However, no matter how much I love it I simply can’t follow their philosophy, because just using their toner for my dry AND sensitive skin isn’t enough at night. I’ve tried it several times before but my skin becomes dry and itchy during the night. In the end I find myself crawling out of bed to put some cream on so I can finally sleep. Of course, they advise you to use their serum on a regular basis at night, too, but looking at the price… I don’t know if it’s worth the money. Currently I’m combining products from different brands. For example: My cleanser and toner are from Dr. Hauschka and my moisturizer is from Weleda. I just use these three products so I’m not mixing up too many different products and brands. ;D

    By the way, here’s an interesting link about certified organic cosmetics available in Germany:

    Lydia: Yes, I thought the philosophy is really different. Don’t they consider the different skin types as they would have different needs. It’s a bit hard to think of using toner only in the night. At least a serum that would aid my cell renewal. Thanks for the link. I’ll check it out. Haven’t come across this brand here.

  7. The Skincare Lady says:

    Hmm I don’t use a “night cream” but I do use lotion at night. My skin tends to be very sensitive and gets easily chapped, especially during the winter, so it really just doesn’t look good if I skip the products. I’m interested in the philosophy of the skin being able to repair itself without products, but if this was true then why does my skin look so terribly dry without the lotion?

    The Skincare Lady: Ah, I’ve just recovered your comments after answering to Alyssa’s. Exactly! That’s what I thought about winter skin. I don’t experience winter here but I can imagine how drying it would become.

  8. Alyssa says:

    I think the question is, are you using the right night cream. I think you are forgetting how a lot of night time creams/treatments help in the cell turn over (in which you stated)So what perfect time, than at night to help speed things along? Helping with aging and sun damage skin. For my skin at least, I need this extra moisture boost at night or I wake up with dry, red skin.

    Alyssa: Yes I agree. We need to pick one that suits out skin type. That’s why I found Dr Hauskha’s idea a little odd. There are different skin types for one, and another, we have to consider the age and skin conditions as well. In fact, what about the weather cos in winter for some of you who experience it once a year, the skin needs more moisturizing for sure isn’t it?

  9. prettybeautiful says:

    i can never sleep with bare skin too, it feels naked, just like living without lipbalm. im quite interested to know about using/mixing carrier oil for night use, i have used moisturizer for so long and also have not seen any significant result. sigh

    prettybeautiful: It’s like the dual skincare regime I wrote about for combi skin. You do that too I remember… Sometimes I use the moisturizer on the cheeks and forehead and then the oils around my eyes and nearer the nose area.

  10. elleve says:

    hmmm just wondering, how did your friend’s facial go?

    Elleve: According to her, overall experience is above average. But she was not used to some differences in the process of the treatment as compared to her previous experiences at other beauty clinics.

  11. Rhonda Husak says:

    Finally I found a post where people just speak their mind. “use this cream, use that cream,” I’m getting confused. All I know is that I’m getting older, getting wrinkles, sagging skin, and I need help. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I have dry skin, am a flight attendant, have used night creme in the past, but just last night slept bare skin. I’m trying to my face in shape for Christmas. ha

    Rhonda: It’s more of a matter of finding the night cream that can help with your skin condition. Something for collagen would be great for sagging skin.

  12. RRobin says:

    I tried using the Hauschka producs and eschewing night cream and have decided that the philosophy is a product of its time — 50 years ago in rural Germany. So, yes, your skin can regenerate itself if you are in a clean environment, but with modern urban pollution and central heating, it needs protection at night.

    RRobin: Yes, agree that we need protection at night.

  13. sesame says:

    In your other comment, you said you’re 34??? Please, don’t come to my blog and make false claims!

  14. Joanna says:

    I have been using Dr Hauschka products for 4 months now. First I wasn’t sure about the whole skipping the night creams thing but I did give it a go. I have a combination skin and haven’t used a night cream for 4 months now and to be honest I love it. My skin has never looked better, my blackheads have reduced by 95%!!! My skin feel fantastic in the mornings. Dr Hauschka suggests to use a facial cleanser that won’t strip off your beneficial skin oils, if your skin feels tight after cleansing you are using the wrong cleanser! For the first week after switching to Dr Hauschka my skin felt very tight at night and thats because I have been using very harsh products before. After about a week my skin has adjusted it self and now feels wonderful! I am 29 years old and my skin has never looked better. My T-zone is not as shiny during the day and seriously my blackheads are barely visible now. I understand that some of you don’t want to spend so much on Dr Hauschka products but there are a lot of pure organic creams out there that you can substitute. I use a very gentle cleanser now from the Dead sea spa range but I kept the Dr Hauschka toner as I found it fab fab fab for my combination skin (its the claryfing toner) and as to my day cream I use the Balancing Day cream from Jurlique and I like it. I also will not use anything on my bode that its not 100% organic, I find that it makes a very big difference.

  15. Swati says:

    I have always followed this philosophy of not using anything at night or going for natural carrier oils and only recently I used some creams but then I wasn’t very happy so switched back to oils but I really think we don’t really need anything. May be as one grows old, to prevent dryness, one should apply a film of moisture but nothing which actually an intensive night treatment. That’s probably a waste of money according to me but everyone to their needs. In summers, of course, I can’t really out anything on my skin. Its so hot that I feel skin is getting stifled.

  16. sesame says:

    That’s interesting…I know Dr Hauschka promotes a cream free night care. I think it depends on one’s skin. On some nights, I can do with just a serum, and some nights I use just oils but other nights, I need a lot more.

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