Your phone starts ringing loud enough to wake the dead. Despite the intense collection of rocks stationed on your forehead, you reach out and silence the noise. Sure, you silence it by throwing your phone into a laundry pile which you will frantically tear into later, searching for your phone. Then you turn your aching eyeballs to your nightstand, where a full glass of water sits within reach. It mocks you like the vodka you kicked back just a few hours before. That’s when you realize with the regret of a thousand tequila shots: the hangover has cometh.
From the occasional imbiber to the hard-partying, most of us who partake in the spirits have gone a tad overboard at one point or another. And what comes next is, shall we say, not pretty. Putting all unpleasant bodily feelings and functions aside for Web MD, let’s talk about what our face is doing. (Besides vomiting. Thanks, Web MD.)
Hangover face, like ex-boyfriends or bedbugs, manifests in different ways. Some of us have dry, papery, wrinkly skin around the eyes which are simultaneously puffy and dark-ringed. Others wake up coated in a grease slick to rival a mechanic’s garage floor. How best to fix hangover face? Here are a five solutions to feel better.
1. Puffy eyes and dark circles, ahoy!
For some, a night of drinking results in a curious morning mask, and I’m not talking about the one you wish you were wearing during your walk of shame. Puffy eyes or dark circles make an appearance, sometimes delightfully conspiring to do so at the same time.
For puffy eyes, or fluid trapped under your eyeballs, consider this home remedy. Grab two organic tea bags, steep in hot water, and let them cool. (If you know thyself and thy drinking habits, consider having steeped tea bags on standby.)
Then spend a few minutes relaxing with them over your eyes. Black tea is great for caffeine, which can reduce redness by restricting blood vessels. Herbal tea, like chamomile, works well to sooth redness and inflammation. Both often contain tannins, which help get the blood flowing.
You can also considering a product like Yon-Ka Phyto-Contour ($47.00), containing 94 percent natural ingredients. It offers rosemary extracts to help reduces puffiness and dark circles. Gently massage this fragrant cream below your eyes with your fingertips.
2. When your morning glow outshines the sun.
Hangover face can involve waking up with skin so oily it looks like it should have a congressional hearing to determine who is at fault. (Also see: sleeping in your makeup.) With sebum production in overdrive, consider a gentle, natural cleanser to restore your face to normal. Avoid harsh exfoliates or anything too stripping, as your body is already focused on hydrating and healing.
A great gentle cleanser to consider is John Master Organics Linden Blossom Face Cream ($22). Made with some certified organic ingredients, it contains soothing aloe vera and rose water.
3. Your skin is red and blotchy.
Another unfortunate side effect of alcohol can be red and/or blotchy skin, similar to the look of rosacea. Since alcohol causes the blood to flow closer to the skin, expanding small capillaries and already-visible veins, you make look as if your lipstick has traveled up over your nose and cheeks. It’s especially common in the fair-hued, which is why the Irish call it “drinker’s nose.”
Aloe vera is a great soother for red and inflamed skin. If you have some pure aloe vera, massage some into your face. You can also consider this Soothing Serum from Juice Beauty ($36.00). Containing organic aloe vera and white grape juice, this product contains certified organic ingredients.
4. Water, water everywhere—especially on your face.
Your parched throat isn’t the only part of your body screaming for water after a night of drinking. Your dry skin might look like it has been hanging out on a clothes line in the dead of winter. Hopefully you remember to down at least one glass of water before you collapsed into bed the night before. If not, drink up. You need to rehydrate on every level, and the free stuff coming out of your faucet is your best bet.
Also, be sure to spritz. I’m an established groupie of Thayer’s Rose Petal Alcohol-Free Toner ($9.95), which I keep in a water spritzer by my sink. This product contains tannins of witch hazel and offers an immediate, protective layer on your skin. And the best part? You don’t even have to raise your head if you have it stashed by your bedside. Which is a plus when your brain feels like it’s made of bowling balls.
5. Moisturize and moisturize.
Last, but certain not least, be sure to treat your face to a repairing moisturizer. Yes, you aptly tended to your insides with many glasses of H20. But once you’re up and about, previous drinks now a fading memory, remember to thank your skin for putting up with your shenanigans.
Take this time to indulge in your favorite moisturizer. You can also consider the Herbal Hydration Complex ($47.00) from Farmaesthetics. Made with organic shea butter and witch hazel, it’s a cooling mask designed to quench your skin in moisture while calming irritated skin.