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  5. Why Should You Have Separate Day Cream & Night Cream?

Have you ever wondered why there are different skincare routines for day and night? Simply put, your skin's requirements vary from day to night.

So, while your skin needs protection during the day, it needs replenishment at night. This article will discuss the difference between day and night creams, and the benefits each offers for your skin.

What Our Experts Say

“The core and texture of day cream and night cream are vastly different from each other. Day creams are very light in texture and hydrate the skin. However, night creams are heavy in texture and form a light occlusive layer over the skin.”

Prajkta Sapre (PG, Cosmetic Technology), Product Development Executive, SkinKraft

What Is A Day Cream? What Are Its Benefits?

Day creams are formulated for your daytime skincare routine. These creams shield your skin from UV rays, dirt and dust. Day creams are light, non-greasy, thinner in consistency, and get quickly absorbed into the skin. In fact, day creams allow you to wear makeup on top of it. It nourishes or moisturizes your skin, leaving it smooth and soft.

Day creams contain SPF because sun exposure happens mostly during the day. Nevertheless, this SPF sometimes is not sufficient to provide proper sun protection. Furthermore, skin-brightening components such as vitamin C [1] and kojic acid [2] are present in day creams. These creams do not use active ingredients like alpha-hydroxy acids, glycolic acid, and retinol, which can cause skin irritation when exposed to sunlight.

Benefits Of A Day Cream

  • Provides UVA protection
  • Prevents wrinkles and fine lines
  • Protects your skin from pollution
  • Filled with antioxidants to repair damaged skin
  • Provides deep skin hydration
  • Prevents free radicals
  • Reduces skin dryness

What Is A Night Cream? What Are Its Benefits?

Night creams are the skincare product that you can use at night. Night creams are thicker than day creams in texture. After the cream application, the rehydration process begins at night when you sleep. Your skin also keeps the repairing work at night. As a result, many night creams have anti-ageing substances like retinol that cause skin cell rejuvenation.These ingredients reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles on your face.

Anti-ageing creams are typically used at night because they contain retinol, a potent ingredient known to reduce fine lines and wrinkles, restore skin firmness, and improve skin texture. However, retinol should not be used during the day, as it makes the skin more sensitive to UV light and may cause redness, flakiness, and sensitivity. [3]

Bakuchiol, a natural alternative to retinol, is the safest and most effective ingredient to look for in both night creams and day creams because it is not photosensitive. [4]

Benefits Of A Night Cream

  • Provides deep hydration
  • Restores essential skin nutrients
  • Fights ageing signs like wrinkles, fine lines, and dark spots.
  • Improves blood circulation and collagen production
  • Improves skin texture, reduces itching, alleviates irritation and inflammation, and restores skin elasticity.
  • Promotes cell regeneration and renewal

What Are The Differences Between Day Creams And Night Creams?

“The core and texture of day cream and night cream are vastly different from each other. Day creams are very light in texture and hydrate the skin. However, night creams are heavy in texture and form a light occlusive layer over the skin.”, says Prajkta Sapre, Product Development Executive, SkinKraft.

The primary differences between a day cream and a night cream are further elaborated below.


Day Cream

Night Cream


Because of the lower concentration of ingredients, it is light and non-greasy.

Because of the high concentration of ingredients, it is thick and can feel greasy.


SPF is the most crucial ingredient in UV protection.

A night cream's main ingredients are retinol and vitamin C, which replenish the skin.


Provides protection from sun damage and pollution.

Rejuvenates your skin and repairs it from damage.

SPF protection

Usually offers SPF protection.

Night creams are not meant to protect you from sun damage, so they typically do not contain SPF.


Take small amounts and gently massage it into your skin. It can be used under your makeup as a primer.

Gently apply it by using upward strokes and circular motions.

It does not allow makeup to adhere well, so cannot be used under your makeup.


  • UVA shielding
  • Prevents wrinkles and fine lines
  • Protects from pollution
  • Offers skin hydration
  • Restores essential skin nutrients.
  • Reduces wrinkles, fine lines, and dark spots.
  • Improves blood circulation and boosts collagen production
  • Provides deep moisturization.

Can You Use Night Cream During The Day And Vice Versa?

A night cream should not be used during the day and vice versa. When used at the wrong times, their special composition will not benefit the skin and will be ineffective.

Using a night cream during the day can leave skin vulnerable to sun and environmental damage, due to a lack of protective ingredients. It also has a heavy feel and a greasy appearance during the day, which is usually undesirable if you want to feel fresh all day. A night cream does not allow makeup to adhere well to the skin.

If you apply a day cream at night, it struggles to give you the necessary nourishment, and hydration that your skin needs during the repairing phase at night. Your skin may react differently when ingredients are reversed, which can be harmful to the skin's natural processes. Understanding the benefits of day cream and night cream, as well as their differences, is critical.

Wrapping Up

The primary distinction between day and night creams is in their texture and ingredients. A day cream is lighter and contains SPF and skin-lightening agents such as vitamin C. A night cream, on the other hand, is richer and thicker and consists of active components such as glycolic acid and retinol. Both are important for healthy skin, and it is necessary that you make them a part of your skincare routine. Always choose your creams based on your skin type for best results.

Begin By Knowing Your Skin

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