Beauty sleep is no myth. Research shows that a good night’s sleep is vital for restructuring, repairing, and regenerating the skin, and in the long-term guards against age-related diseases and stress. Here are a few tips on how to get some decent shut-eye.
What counts as a ‘good night’s sleep’?
Before delving into how to fall asleep, it’s worth noting that the minimum amount of sleep adults should have per night is seven or eight hours. However, only about 32% of adults get this much.
What does sleep have to do with our skin?
People are becoming increasingly aware of the association between sleep and good skin, with many brands coming out with products that work while we sleep. It’s a proven fact that cell renewal occurs when the body is relaxing, suggesting that skin radiance is improved after rest.
The side-effects of sleep deprivation
When one is sleep deprived, the body creates more of the stress hormone, cortisol. Not only does a higher level of cortisol increase stress and swelling in the body, but it damages the quality of the skin. According to research, lack of sleep can also worsen skin conditions like acne, skin irritations, immune-related skin problems, and eczema. Together with puffy bags and dark circles under the eyes, a lack of sleep accelerates the process of aging, since it is during sleep that growth hormones repair damaged cells.
Tips for falling asleep
If you have trouble falling asleep, avoid having a large meal late in the day. Drink lots of water, but again not too late or you’ll be up all night running to the toilet. Make sure your room is cool, quiet and dark. Keep your tech out of the bedroom and clear your mind — it’s time to relax, not check your messages and get yourself excited or bothered by things that might keep you awake. Make sure your sheets don’t reek of strong laundry detergent, which may also irritate your skin. Use skin care products that have relaxing ingredients and smells. Keep an open aromatherapy balm next to your bed, to breathe in the soothing elixirs and help you let go of any anxiety and toxins you’ve built up during the day. Wear cool and comfortable clothes so you don’t wake suddenly in a pool of sweat. Lastly, if it helps you, play your favorite relaxing music in the background.
In short, getting your beauty sleep is not an out-of-date cliché — it’s essential for achieving and maintaining radiant and healthy skin.