Scottish Daily Mail

Why you should ONLY shave your legs at night

… and get a pedicure in the morning. The surprising timetable that’ll make your beauty routine more effective

- by Sophie Haslett

EVerYOne knows you should take off your make-up before you go to bed. But did you know you’ll get a closer shave if you tackle your legs last thing at night, or a glossier pedicure if you visit the salon first thing in the morning?

The time of day you do various beauty tasks — and the order you do them in — can dramatical­ly influence their effectiven­ess. So what are the secrets of the beauty body clock — and what should you be doing when to look, feel and function at your best?


YOu may assume you should wait until after breakfast — but for the whitest smile, brush as soon you wake to get rid of the bacteria that has formed in your mouth overnight. Then, after you have eaten, rinse with a fluoride mouthwash.

Whatever you do, don’t brush straight after your meal. The enamel coating of your teeth is in a weakened state due to the high acid content of food and the enzymes your body releases in saliva to start the digestive process. it takes at least 30 minutes to return to normal — brush before that, and you risk stripping the enamel.


MOST dermatolog­ists believe it’s better for you to exfoliate early in the day, as this will help get rid of any residual oil from the night before, give dull skin a lift and get the blood flowing. exfoliatin­g your face in the morning rather than the evening will also help you avoid breakouts.

We also tend to use stronger products such as heavy-duty serums or night creams before bed — and if you scrub away your dead skin in the evening before applying one of these, they might irritate your skin.


The sebum (or oil) level in your skin is highest first thing in the morning. As counter-intuitive as it may seem, skin products — especially acne-fighting ones — can be more effective when applied to sebum- rich skin.

So to get the best results, slather them on first thing. But it’s important to put them on in the right order. Opt for items with a thinner consistenc­y, such as a serum, first, before finishing with your heavier creams and moisturise­rs.

Otherwise, those pricey lotions you’ve spent your money on can actually clog the skin and stop the lighter ones from penetratin­g and doing their job.


STruggling to make time for a haircut during a busy working week? Try first thing. not only will booking the first available appointmen­t at the salon ensure that you are able to make the most of the rest of the day, but it will also mean you get the best cut as your hairdresse­r’s stress levels are lowest. even if you’re the third or fourth client in the day, your stylist may approach your hair with less enthusiasm than she or he did first thing.


iT MAY be tempting to schedule a pedicure after a long day of being on your feet, but according to the American Podiatric Medical Associatio­n, you should actually make the nail salon one of your first stops to lower your chances of taking home an infection.

As unsavoury as it is to think about, foot baths are more likely to be clean and bacteria-free in the morning, reducing the risk of viral or fungal infections. And of course, you’ll also benefit from your pedicurist being at their freshest when it comes to painting and polishing your toes to perfection.

But take note — don’t shave your legs before you head to the salon. newly-shaved limbs have more open pores (and sometimes tiny nicks the eye can’t see), making them more susceptibl­e to infectious diseases.


The skin also produces sebum during the middle of the day as part of its protection against uV rays — and this means that even if you applied a flawless face of make-up at 7am, by midday it might be looking distinctly shiny. This is the optimum time to use blotting cloths to absorb excess oil and keep your skin clear and blemish-free.

Blotting at lunchtime also helps ensure your make-up stays looking fresh for the whole afternoon.


Air conditione­rs, office central heating and your computer screen can wreak havoc with your complexion. But to stop them dehydratin­g — and ageing — your skin, keep a hydrating facial mist by your desk for an afternoon top-up.

Simply spritz the spray over your face for a pick-me-up around 3pm. Your skin will thank you.


iT MAY sound like a good way to start the day, but experts warn that getting a massage in the morning can leave you feeling as though you’re moving through treacle for the rest of the day.

Around 5pm, is perfect timing — you’re unlikely to have just eaten a meal, which can make you uncomforta­ble when you’re on the table, and you’ll also probably be able to go home and relax afterwards, not to mention being primed for a good night’s sleep.


APPlYing your fake tan in the evening is both practical (you can more easily wander around the house in comfortabl­e loose-fitting clothes or pyjamas than you can in an office!) and productive.

it takes between six and eight hours for most fake tans to show up on your skin — time most of us don’t have to spare during the day. So you’re best applying your product in the evening, letting it dry to prevent streaks and then heading to bed. When you shower it off in the morning, you’ll have a bronzed glow and be able to get rid of that telltale biscuit smell before venturing out in public.


if YOu usually start your day by washing and drying your hair, you may be doing it some damage. Stylists tend to recommend washing and conditioni­ng at the end of the day when you’re not in a rush and can give it some time to dry naturally — improving the health of your hair and scalp, and making your colour last longer.

But you may want to finish it off with a quick blast of the hairdryer to make sure it’s 100 per cent dry before bed. Trapped moisture creates a humid environmen­t that encourages scalp microbes to grow. This, in turn, can cause scalp irritation or dandruff.


iT MighT be more commonplac­e to book a facial during the day, but research shows you’d do better to schedule an appointmen­t in the evening.

not only will a late-night facial give your skin an overnight recovery if you have had any blackhead or whitehead extraction­s, but it will also give you the opportunit­y to head to bed soon afterwards, where your facial muscles will relax as you sleep and the products used during the facial will seep deeper into your skin — letting you wake up looking fresher and brighter.


MOST dermatolog­ists recommend you cleanse and wash your face twice a day — once in the morning and once in the evening.

But if you’re going to do just one of these, opt for the evening clean as this is vital to remove dirt, oil and any debris your skin has picked up during the day and keep it healthy and clear. Many experts even advise a double cleanse before you hit the hay — once to remove make-up and build-up, and a second time to unclog your pores.


YOu’re better off picking up the razor last thing at night. According to beauty experts, we should be shaving our legs before we go to bed for the closest and smoothest result.

This is because, as we sleep, our legs become warm and swell slightly — so by the morning, the hairs don’t stick out as much as they do during the evening and are harder to get with the razor.

But don’t use this as an excuse for a lengthy bath before bed — after 15 or 20 minutes in the water, your skin wrinkles, making it difficult to get a close shave.

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