The Importance of Sleep in Maintaining Healthy Skin
So you’ve gone out and spent the GDP of a small country on skin care products – but you’re still not happy with the result. What gives?
Well my friend, put that maxed out credit card to bed. And then you follow it under the covers too! It’s time for you to get some much needed beauty sleep.
Sleep is the secret weapon when it comes to maintaining healthy skin. Quality sleep is why some women in their sixties look fresh as daisies and why some women in their early thirties look like great grandmothers.
Below we take a whistle stop tour of just some of the reasons why sleep plays such an important role in helping you keep your skin looking fresh for longer.
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I’m sure you’ve heard of a friend, or a friend’s mom, getting collagen injections. If not a friend you will know at least twenty celebrities that use the beauty treatment. Artificial collagen is used to give the skin a youthful vigor, to iron out wrinkles, creases and age spots.
Natural collagen is protein found in abundance in the body, it’s one of the main building blocks of the skin. What you may not be aware of is that when we sleep the body produces new collagen. If you sleep well it stands to reason then that your body produces more of it.
If you sleep badly however this collagen production is interrupted and the results of this will be written all over your face – quite literally.
Patricia Wexler MD, the so-called ‘Dermatologist to the Stars’, believes that, “Getting 5 hours sleep instead of 7 can lead to twice as many fine lines and drier skin”.
Now, knowing you should get more sleep and actually doing so are two very different things. Need some hints and tips? Fortunately the expert team over at the Sleep Advisor have got you covered.
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The modern world is stress-inducing place to be. That’s just a fact of life. Even if you have a cushy job, a happy relationship and stable finances, you still have to deal with traffic, crime, national and international issues, and environmental stressors! That city air and pollution! The stress of it all!
Stress is bad for the skin. When we worry our body releases a hormone known as cortisol. Elevated levels of cortisol leads to inflammation and the overproduction of sebum, this being the oily substance secreted by the skin to provide weatherproofing. Too much sebum can restrict the skin pores and lead to outbreaks of acne. No, not pimples!
Cortisol doesn’t stop there. Elevated levels of what medical science calls the ‘stress hormone’ have also been connected to outbreaks of skin conditions such as eczema, dermatitis and psoriasis.
Fortunately sleep is the perfect antidote for stress. I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase, “It will all seem better in the morning.” Well there seems to be truth to that old adage. People who sleep better are less anxious, less stressed and less depressed. Important for your skin, people who sleep better also have more control over their cortisol levels. Thanks sleep!
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I’m sorry to say but no amount of sleep is going to reverse the ageing process. A sixty-year-old can’t go to bed for a month and wake up looking twenty years younger. If only!
Ensuring that you consistently get good sleep can however slow the ageing process. Phew!
Not all sleep is created equally. Throughout the course of a night the body goes through numerous different stages of sleep, five in fact. Later in the night the body enters the stages of sleep known as ‘slow wave’. This is the truly good deep stuff that powers the body through the following day.
During slow wave sleep the body releases powerful transmitters known for ease as human growth hormones, or HGH for ease. HGH triggers the body into action, telling cells where and how to repair themselves. This allows small daily breakdowns in skin tissue to be easily patched up and repaired.
If an individual suffers from broken or shortened sleep they will spend a lot less time in slow wave sleep, less HGH will be released and won’t feel the same rejuvenating benefit. When this happens, blemishes that could’ve been repaired will be left unattended.
Overtime these flaws will go past the point of no return and become lasting features. This in effect is how bags under the eyes become permanent and lines become entrenched and turn into wrinkles. Time to hit the hay me thinks!
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Well my fellow skin care fans, there you have it – three ways in which your sleep is your skin’s best friend. By all means carry on splashing out on those expensive cleansers and moisturizers but remember, if you’re not getting enough sleep you will just be throwing your money away.
And if by some miracle reading the above doesn’t persuade you to treat your sleep with more respect, I should also point out also that the health benefits of good rest aren’t just skin deep. Far from it! Good sleepers are also smarter, happier, healthier, more attractive to the opposite sex, enjoy sex more and live longer too. Convinced yet? You should be. To bed.
*This is a guest post.
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Regine Karpel says
What a great post.
So true! My skin has aged so much faster since having a baby and getting no sleep.
For sure. You’re not kidding! Wrinkles instantly appeared between my eyebrows.
Jenny Morrison says
This is so very true!!! When I don’t have enough sleep I get dark spots on my cheeks. If I am chronically tired, people ask if I have been punched in the face. Seriously! But, when I sleep, I never have them. Great post!
I 100% agree! Quality sleep is so important to skin health and that of so many other systems in our bodies.
Becca Wilson says
You are so right that sleep is important for maintaining healthy looking skin! If your body is tired or stressed so is your skin.
Aaaaah!! The power of a good nights sleep!
I know! If only it were more attainable!!