According to experts there is not much difference between the cream we use during the day and that which we use at night, except for a few contents. Day cream contains sun protection agent which protects the skin from ultraviolet rays present in sun light. Though application of this will not harm you if applied at night time, but there is no use of applying it and wasting money on the SPF content of day cream.
In addition to presence of SPF, another major difference between night and day cream is that night cream is made to hydrate and moisturise your facial skin and contains more oil which you cannot put on during the day as oily face does not look good. Human skin has self repairing properties. It continues to repair itself for damages caused due to exposure to pollution or injury caused by some object. By oiling and moisturising, you are helping the skin to heal faster and replenishing the fat layer present under the outer layer of the skin.
Night creams can also contain some active agents like retinoids or alpha hydroxi acids. These are exfoliants and their activity increases due to exposure to sunlight and may cause burning of the skin layer. To reduce the irritating effect on your skin, it is suggested that creams with these agents are applied at night. After application, the user with delicate skin is sometimes advised to refrain from switching on light in the room.
In case you desire to have a face cream which can be used both during the day and at night time, you can go in for non SPF light weight skin lotion. When you apply it during the day you can apply sun screen lotion separately. While applying at night, after thoroughly washing your face, you can apply it without sunscreen lotion. In case your skin is dry or very dry, especially during the colder months, you will require heavier cream with better hydrating formulation for night, so that as you sleep, your skin gets hydrated and repair function continues and you are ready to apply light skin care lotion during the day.
The choice of right type of skin does not mean that you go in for expensive creams. A large number of products are advertised by manufacturers, enumerating benefits of the product. These products may be beneficial in controlled conditions but actually you may not feel any apparent effect even after long use. Above all, these are very costly products and will take away a major part of your pay cheque.
The best option is to carefully study the qualities of your skin and then select the cream which in your view is suitable to you. For night time application you can make your own cream using products available in your kitchen like milk cream and honey.