There’s a good reason why getting a good night’s sleep is called “beauty sleep.” Sleep helps your body restore and rejuvenate, grow muscle, repair tissue and synthesize hormones, explains the National Sleep Foundation. And that restorative process also applies to our skin. So much so in fact, that Stephanie Jacob writing for WebMD in “The Truth About Beauty Sleep,” says that, the closest thing to the foundation of youth for your beauty routine, may be sleep. The key is to get 7 to 9 hours of quality sleep every night, she says. Less than six hours can affect your appearance.
Beauty benefits of shut eye
If not exactly the foundation of youth, the benefits of sleep are highly visible and include:
Fewer wrinkles: Your body produces collagen when you sleep and that helps reduce wrinkle development. Collagen is the protein that gives skin strength and elasticity along with helping to replacing dead skin cells.
Radiant complexion: Do you wake up with a healthy glow? You can attribute that to a good night’s sleep, since blood flow to your skin gets a boost while you are in dreamland. Lack of sleep affects the flow of blood to your skin which can make it appear dull.
Less dark circles and puffiness: Lack of sleep can contribute to puffy eyes and dark circles. When you are tired, your body produces more of the chemical cortisol to give you energy to stay awake. Cortisol increases the volume of blood in your body, which results in the blood vessels under the thin skin of the eye to dilate and so become more prominent. The result is swelling and the appearance of “dark circles” under the eye. Heredity also plays a part in this. If you have fair skin, you are more apt to have dark circles since the skin tends to be more translucent so that the blood vessels are more obvious.
Improved inflammatory skin conditions: In “6 Amazing Reasons to Sleep for Skin Health” on everyday Health, Karen Appold writes that poor sleep can increase stress hormones which have an impact on the severity of inflammatory skin conditions. In fact, a vicious cycle can ensue because itching affects sleep quality which in turn can affect skin conditions. The key is to try to get a restful sleep to reduce inflammation.
Take steps to a good night’s sleep
Here are 7 tips from the Mayo Clinic for a better night’s sleep
- Stick to a sleep schedule: Go to bed and get up at the same time every day to reinforce your body's sleep-wake cycle.
- Watch what you eat: When you go to bed hungry or stuffed, the discomfort may keep you up.
- Create a bedtime routine: Let our body know it’s time to wind down with a routine – take a warm bath or shower, read a book, listen to calming music.
- Get comfortable: Make sure your room is conducive for sleep. Aim for cool, dark and quiet.
- Exercise: Regular physical activity helps you fall asleep faster and experience deeper sleep.
- Don’t overdo naps: Naps can interfere with your nighttime sleep. Best time for a nap is midday for about 10 to 30 minutes.
- Manage stress: Control stress with breaks, delegating, setting boundaries – whatever it takes.
In addition to getting more sleep to help your skin look better and boost collagen production, consider retinol products such as True Results Retinol Active Skincare. Retinols achieve anti-aging results by protecting skin from free radicals and prompting surface skin cells to turn over and die rapidly so that new skin cells can grow. Retinols also slow down the breakdown of collagen.