We spend a third of our lives asleep—that means our bedroom is the most lived-in space in our homes. It’s the room where we start and end our days, and that’s why the rituals that happen there are extra important. In The Wind Down, we’ll be exploring the nighttime routines of people we admire and taking their advice to make the moments just before bed feel our best.
“I’m the youngest of four children—no one ever stayed quiet when I was growing up,” says Renée Rouleau. “So I literally don’t have a problem falling asleep anywhere.” But even so, the aesthetician—who is responsible for the glowy skin of stars like Lili Reinhart and Demi Lovato—has a packed schedule, traveling between Austin, New York, and Los Angeles to see clients, all the while managing her eponymous brand. So of course those nighttime hours are precious.
She’s also well aware that beauty sleep is a real thing, which is why you’ll never catch her going to bed without completing her full routine—and why she has a very particular strategy to aligning her head on her pillow. Here, she details all.
Midnight snack: The last thing that I eat on most nights is a Gala apple with Justin’s peanut butter—it’s my favorite dessert ever. But once in a while I might have Oatly ice cream instead.
Tune in: I have a TV in my bathroom, so at night I do my skin routine while watching episodes of Shark Tank or The Tonight Show that I’ve recorded the night before.
Brush up: I use two toothbrushes at night. One is an electric toothbrush that I brush my teeth with, using Sensodyne sensitive toothpaste, and then I have a hard, traditional toothbrush that I use with regular toothpaste to clean my tongue.
Skin saviors: As you can imagine, I’m somebody who doesn’t go to bed without washing my face. Right now, I’m testing a few new cleansers from my line. I always use makeup remover, cleanser, and toner, and I rotate different serums: one night might be a retinol serum, another might be an acid serum, and one might be a hydrating peptide serum. Then I apply moisturizer, eye cream, and neck cream. If my skin’s feeling really dry, I’ll also pat on a skin oil. Once a week—usually on Sunday night—I do my Triple Berry Smoothing Peel, followed by a mask.
Hanging out: The final part of my skin-care routine involves hanging my head upside down for two minutes—it’s a great way to increase blood flow to give your skin an inner glow. I recommend it to my clients, because with age, blood circulation slows down and less oxygen gets to your face. All you have to do is hang over the side of the bed—I put my phone on the floor and look at it when I’m upside down.
Hydration nation: I apply body lotion all over—I like Weleda’s Body Butter and Origins’s Ginger Souffle. Then I rub my feet with Egyptian Magic and put on some thick socks.
Easy does it: I always stretch before bed—I like to get at least 10 minutes in. I might do it while looking at my phone and responding to Instagram DMs. The more messages I have, the longer I stretch—which is a good thing!
Perfect pillows: I put a lot of thought into my pillows. I use a firm memory foam one, and I always strategically place my head on it—I sleep on my side, and the lower half of my face doesn’t touch the pillow, which helps prevent nasolabial folds (aka smile lines) from forming. I’ve trained myself to sleep this way. If I wake up in the middle of the night and I’m not positioned correctly, I’ll adjust. I also keep a second pillow underneath it for a little extra help with lymphatic drainage—especially if I had a salty dinner.
Preferred pj’s: I like to change it up—sometimes it’s a negligee, sometimes it’s a soft T-shirt.
Something sentimental: My husband passed away 14 months ago, and a friend gave me a “bereavement spray” that you mist on your pillows. It smells like mandarin, cypress, lavender, and vetiver. Sometimes, if I’m feeling sad, I spray it on my sheets. She also gave me a “love and peace” spray that smells like mango and mint. It gives my room a nice ambience.
Lights-out at 11:30 p.m.!
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