Oh, sleep. To you, we owe so much—and have so much to apologise for. You’re the one thing that helps us wake up prettier, and yet rarely do we spend the quality time with you that you deserve. For everyone who’s taken their snooze for granted (read: tossed it aside in favour of a Netflix binge or bottle of Chardonnay), listen up—your skin is suffering. Yes, your skin—the one thing you cleanse, treat, massage, exfoliate, and agonize over for days on end. Sleep and the state of your skin go hand in hand—if you don’t believe us, just keep reading.
Flip through to find out all the skin issues that can be solved with a good night’s rest!
Wake up call: your late night antics are making you look older—it’s a fact. Sleep is a time for your damaged cells to repair themselves. Lack of sleep cuts this restorative process and can actually cause visible signs of aging. Listen to this fact: in one study, fine lines, uneven skin tone, and reduced elasticity were twice as great in poor sleepers. Yikes.
Try to get at least seven to eight hours of sleep every night, and use an anti-aging serum with peptides every night (we love the Black Pine Firming, Lifting & Antiwrinkle Serum ($74) from Korres) to help your skin recover.
By now, you should know what collagen is—you’re born with it and it’s what gives young children their plump, smooth skin. Unfortunately, over time, it weakens and loses its elasticity. Enter: wrinkles and sagging. But here’s the good news: collagen 1 production, which is responsible for firming your skin and maximizing water retention, is actually accelerated when you sleep. Since water retention is key to keeping your skin moisturized and supple, accelerated collagen production is basically the best thing that can happen to you. So: get sleep—and lots of it.
Source: LA Times
Are your breakouts being particularly stubborn? Lack of sleep could be to blame. Getting at least eight hours of uninterrupted sleep every night will help keep the production of stress hormones, called glucocorticoids, low, which will in turn keep your breakouts to a minimum. One study conducted in Japan found that stress, lack of sleep, and sweat were the three most common acne triggers among a group of teenagers, while another study found that psychological stress increases by 14% for every hour of sleep you lose a night.
Stress, in turn, can lead to abnormalities in your skin structure and function—in other words, exacerbate your acne to no end. Have a hard time falling asleep? Here’s a tip: crank down the thermostat. Researchers have found that a cooler body temperature—around 60 to 68 degrees Farenheit—actually makes it easier for you to fall asleep.
So you got some great Instagram snaps at the beach, but now your skin is red and raw. If you want to stop resembling a cooked lobster, you better get some sleep. According to one study, poor sleepers also experience a slower recovery from sunburns: “Recovery from sunburn was more sluggish in poor quality sleepers, with erythema (redness) remaining higher over 72 hours, indicating that inflammation is less efficiently resolved.” Since lack of sleep actually suppresses your immune system, it reduces your skin’s ability to protect itself from environmental factors—including UV rays.
If you do find yourself with an angry sunburn, try one of these soothing after-sun lotions or our DIY sunburn soother—they’ll cool your skin in a pinch.
Is this information making you rethink your sleep? How much sleep do you get each night? Tell us below!