Can I leave makeup on overnight?

It can be tempting—especially after a late night—to fall into bed without washing your face. No big real, right? Well, if you routinely skip cleansing your skin, it will start to take its toll.

“Leaving your makeup on can clog pores, and that means that the oil normally secreted by the pores can get trapped, causing a build up of dead skin cells and eventually breakouts,” explains David Bank, MD, director of The Center for Dermatology, Cosmetic and Laser Surgery in Mount Kisco, NY. Sleeping in eye makeup can lead to irritation—meaning you could wake up with red, itchy eyes. “And while leaving makeup on your skin overnight won’t directly cause wrinkles, it can suck moisture out of your skin, making any lines you have look more prominent by the time the alarm goes off,” he told us.

Save your skin by doing a quick rinse with a gentle facial cleanser that won’t strip skin of moisture.

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiologist (Heart Specialist)

For good skin health, everyone should wash their face at least once a day, at night. It's important to wash your skin at night to remove your makeup if your skin is acne-prone.

It’s important to take a few minutes at the end of the day to wash your face. Makeup clogs pores, so if you leave it on your face overnight, you risk getting enlarged pores and blackheads from bacteria that may be trapped inside the pore. Leaving on eye makeup can clog the pores on the eyelids, which could cause a stye or infection, and sleeping in lipstick can actually cause blackheads or breakouts on the skin around your lips.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.