Active ingredients sound as though they are essential to all skin creams; however, according to various well-regarded dermatologists and scientists, they may have greater effects when applied at night. With so many options on the market today, it can be slightly overwhelming to select the best skin care products for your specific needs. Below are a few tips and information to help guide you in the right direction to making a decision that may just save you money in the process of looking healthier and younger.


What are Actives?

Actives, or rather active ingredients, are the essential ingredients in your skin care products that make the product work. These are the ingredients that help with skin concerns such as wrinkles, dark spots, fine lines, pimples, rosacea, and more. Actives come in both the natural and chemical-based products you are likely to find in the skin care products you currently use. Such ingredients include benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, vitamin C, vitamin E, and alpha hydroxy acids. These alpha hydroxy acids are found in various natural foods such as citrus fruits (l-ascorbic acid), glycolic acid (sugar cane), lactic acid (fermented milk), malic acid (apples), grapes (grapes), and more. When you use actives in your skin care products, it assists you in your efforts to keep your skin healthy and youthful in appearance.


Choosing the Right Cream

 Great news for us all: Many over-the-counter and prescription skin creams both contain active ingredients! Even certain all-natural products can contain active ingredients, too. When you are selecting the right skin cream for yourself, the best and most effective creams should contain sufficient active ingredients to be successful. Well-regarded Washington dermatologist Dr. Sandra Read has stated that it is essential to use creams with enough active ingredients to receive any benefits. One way to make an educated guess as to whether a cream has enough active ingredients is to look at the list of ingredients.

According to Dr. Michael Tick, biologist and laboratory director of The Institute of Skin Sciences, while you will be unable to see the percentage used for each ingredient, the FDA does require that ingredients are listed from high to low in level of concentration. So, if an ingredient is listed closer to the top of the list, the more of the ingredient in the product. Prescription creams will have stronger concentrations; however, many products you can buy online and at the store can be equally effective in many circumstances.

Use at Night

A number of reasons exist for using creams with active ingredients at night rather than during the day. One of the greatest reasons according to Dr. Baumann, advisory board specialist and skin care consultant to top over-the-counter companies such as Neutrogena and Aveeno, various active ingredients, including Retinol, become inactive when exposed to the sun. For this reason, it is highly recommended to use skin care products with active ingredients at night. Dr. Read also publicizes another highly influential reason in that these active ingredients take a significant amount of time to penetrate the skin. Using such products at night without introduction to additional outside influences provides you with the best chance for success.

 Preliminary research is showing us that the rise in body temperature at night causes the skin to breathe (respirate) and pores to open wider. This lets the actives in the skin care to penetrate deeper. Cool eh?

 Most importantly, many actives, such as retinol, glycolic acid, and vitamin c, can cause a gentle exfoliating process on the skin, making it prone to sunburn. Photosensitivity can be serious enough to cause permanent skin damage and scarring. The use of the sunscreen is necessary but total sun avoidance during the use of these skin-changing actives is your best bet.

 Skin creams with actives have shown to have great success with millions of people the world over and may very well have even greater success when used at night rather than during the day. Do not forget to give products long enough time (4-6 weeks) to take effect for the best results and the best you!