Are you getting enough sleep? And how you can sleep yourself to younger skin so you can flex #wokeUpLikeThis!

Have we all been duped into thinking we need so much to achieve great skin when we might actually just need a better night's sleep?

There has been a lot of research and science into the concept of 'Beauty sleep' recently because sleep influences all our internal functions, but it is also where the most important epidermal recovery takes place!

Have you ever woken up from a poor night's sleep and noticed immediately your skin seems paler? Or maybe your under-eye circles are darker? Or your fine lines and wrinkles are more prominent?

Studies on sleep and our skin health show that poor sleep can lead to premature ageing, a lack of recovery from UV damage and breakouts. For example, a 2017 study found that just two days of poor sleep negatively affected participants' perceived attractiveness, health, sleepiness, and trustworthiness. What's even crazier is a 2016 study that found that one hour of sleep debt requires almost four hours of sleep for recovery. 

Why does sleep affect our skin so much?

During sleep, your skin's blood flow increases, and the skin begins to rebuild its collagen and repair damage from UV exposure. It also helps to reduce wrinkles and age spots, plumps the skin and fights acne-causing bacteria.

But what do we actually need to do?

Ultimately we need to aim for seven to nine hours of sleep every day.

We have heard this messaging for a long time now; however, it has become more important now than ever with the increased stress and environmental factors we face every day. Sleep quality and quantity are essential for your physical and mental health, and the added benefits for your skin are a no brainer. 

So here are my top 5 tips for ensuring your Beauty Sleep is as beneficial as possible:

  1. Double cleanse your face every night before bed. This is critical to ensuring your skin is in the cleanest, optimal state to begin repair overnight. 
  2. Use a fitness tracker to ensure you can track your sleep and make sure you are getting enough Deep Sleep each night. If you are constantly in a light sleep state, your body won't facilitate its collagen production and repair properly. 
  3. Try a silk pillowcase. Normal cotton pillowcases can be a dry and irritating environment for the skin to sit on all night. Silk pillowcases reduce the chance of fine lines and acne breakouts - providing an optimal environment for skin through the night. 
  4. Stay Hydrated! not just by drinking water but in a humid environment. If your skin is feeling dehydrated or winter begins to crack and flake your skin, try sleeping with a humidifier close to your bed. The humid environment will help keep your skin hydrated and supple. 
  5. Set your phone on sleep mode at least 1 hour before bed and reframe from using it. We need to give our brain time to switch off and our eyes time away from blue light to increase sleep hygiene. So set your phone's sleep mode and stick to it - your skin will thank you!

So while I wouldn't ditch your skincare routine, a good night's sleep will certainly help increase your chances of the ultimate glowing skin! 

Happy Sleeping!