In the spirit of Mythbusters, we are going to dig into the research and find out is the so-called beauty sleep a real thing or just another silly myth. Many girls have probably heard about this top beauty “secret” at a young age from their moms or grandmothers, but lately beauty sleep theory has gained the attention of scientists who are now trying to get a scientifically proven conclusion. And when they get involved, things tend to get more serious, so even small, insignificant beauty chit-chatting gets a whole new scientific dimension.
We all know how powerful the beauty industry is these days, but what if the key ingredient, the elixir of the fresh and young beauty, is available to all of us for free? Would it all collapse? Most likely it would not, but if you are into conspiracy theories, then this could be a good one.
So, what hides behind the veil of beauty sleep? It is so simple that you would barely believe it. Beauty sleep theory is based on getting enough sleep, approximately eight hours each night. That is it. No vampire treatments, no overhyped creams with weird ingredients, no goofy sheet face masks that can scare the hell out of your man (although that can be fun), nothing. It seems that the top beauty treatment is actually affordable to all of us, so why are not we all glowing and shining as soon as we step out of bed? Well, because we underestimate the power of sleep and do not look at it as a way of nourishing ourselves.
When it comes to beauty, women usually think about makeup products first. The market is overflooded with various products which are intended to cover each millimeter of our faces in tons of layers; it’s become ridiculous. So while we are getting lost among lipstick shades and face primers, we forget about the base, about that plain canvas which our skin represents. Yes, there are facial creams, nourishing treatments and so on, but none of that can help if we do not nurture our skin correctly from the inside. Skin is the largest organ of our body, so everything that we do to ourselves will eventually show off on it, skin remembers everything, and by everything, we mean every stress, every sleepless night, worries, anxiety, etc.
Studies have shown that sleep deprivation can have a negative impact on our facial appearance. Dark under-eye circles, sapless skin with a greyish undertone, wrinkles, skin aging, small imperfections, and pimples are all connected to our unhealthy sleep habits. So not only that we feel tired and drained after a night of poor sleep, but we also look like that.
During the day our skin is working and defending itself from external impacts, and sleep time is reserved for regeneration and intense repair, as skin cells tend to recover two times faster during the night. Once we reach the REM-deep sleep phase, the skin regeneration process is at its highest, so our beauty sleep is actually a phase of proper deep sleep. As a part of the repair process, while we are sleeping, our skin produces collagen which makes our skin more plump and less wrinkle-prone. While we are snoozing, our body is boosting blood flow to the skin which gives it that healthy glow and eliminates dullness of our face. When the facial skin is well rested and regenerated, then it can work properly with additional beauty care products.
To make a conclusion, we can say that the beauty sleep myth is busted. There is an indisputable correlation between our sleep hygiene and our facial appearance, so here is an experiment: Try sleeping for at least seven hours per night and take a picture of your face every morning to notice and track the improvement. Once you become aware of the change, you will sleep more for sure, and that is not only beneficial for your appearance but your overall wellbeing as well. The next time you laugh at some beauty sleep meme, remember that it is not entirely a joke. Now let’s check out some useful tips that can enhance the effects of beauty sleep.
Tips For Enhanced Beauty Sleep Routine
Before we go to sleep, we need to prepare our skin and take the day off, so here are some useful tips to improve your routine, because sometimes we girls need those few extra steps in order to really look their best in the morning.
- Makeup – always make sure to remove all the makeup before you go to sleep. Sleeping with your makeup will undo all beauty sleep effects, it will clog your pores, and no matter how long you sleep, your skin would not be grateful at all.
- Skincare – depending on your skin type, after cleaning you should apply a proper moisturizer. A good moisturizer is lightweight, soothing and hydrating. If you already have wrinkles, applying some anti-age products before sleep to help with the fresh morning look. Eye-creams and serums will sink into the skin during the sleep, but you should practice applying them around 15 minutes before you go to bed, because once we lay down, it is easy to wipe off the products by accident with pillowcase or sheets.
- Sleep routine – our day has only 24 hours and if we sleep around 8 hours that means that we spent ⅓ of our day sleeping. That sounds like huge a waste of time because we are not much productive while we sleep, but by allowing ourselves to sleep for those recommended eight hours, we are doing more for ourselves. And beauty sleep does not really work with only 6 hours of sleep, so try finding more time for rest.
- Bedding – we have all woken up with bedding line imprints on our face many times, it usually occurs if the pillowcase is made from cotton or similar materials that tend to develop permanent lines and wrinkles. To avoid that try using silk bedding.
- Sleep position – when it comes to facial care, many dermatologists recommend back sleep position as the best one for several reasons. By sleeping on your back, you avoid putting additional pressure on one side of the face. For example, if you usually sleep on your right side, that side of your face is constantly being pressed into the pillow, which makes that one side more wrinkle-prone and it will probably age faster than the left side. Also, this position prevents all the oils and creams from our face to get in touch with the pillowcase, sheets, and our hair.
- Pillowcase – this part of the bedding is mostly in touch with our face, so it is essential to keep it clean. You should change it at least once a week and flip it every night. Pillowcases are like a playground for bacteria and all kinds of dirt that can plug your pores, so it is essential to keep them clean.
Bad Habits That Are Hindering Your Beauty Sleep
After some useful tips, we would like to point out a few things that are preventing you from experiencing a night of proper beauty sleep. We all do these things sometimes, but somehow we always need someone else to reminds us that they are wrong.
- Coffee – we are all aware that coffee can keep us awake when needed, but did you know that half of the caffeine will remain in your system even after four to six hours? A study has shown that it is best to avoid drinking coffee at least six hours before your desired bedtime; otherwise it will restrict your sleep. If you do not drink coffee often, or feel sensitive to it, we recommend drinking it only before your lunchtime. Coffee addicts should also try to reduce the intake of their favorite drink after 3 PM. In the afternoon hours try replacing coffee with green tea which contains less caffeine.
- Smartphone – we start our day on our phones, and we go to sleep with them. We all have the urge to scroll down through our feed just one more time before falling asleep, which can be attached to so-called FOMO syndrome. It is easy to get carried away because time flies on social networks, and your predicted 5 minutes can easily turn into one hour or more of Instagram stalking. Limit your time on social networks and always minimize the lighting of the screen if you are in a dark room.
- Netflix – with Netflix binge-watching your favorite shows has no limits, it is so easy to get addicted to it quickly and before you are aware, it is already morning. If you are a fan of horror movies, then we have some bad news for you. Watching scary movies or series before bed will cause the adrenaline rush and arouse the chemicals in your body that can keep you awake, so if you have plans to sleep tonight, you should watch some less thrilling movies.
- Nightcap – although many recommend a glass of wine per day, drinking alcohol during the evening hours also affects our sleep negatively. It will make you feel sleepy, but it can also lower the quality of your shut-eye, and considering that it also has diuretic features, you will probably have to wake up at some point to go to the bathroom.
- Overthinking – taking our daily stress and problems to bed is never a good idea, but we usually tend to analyze and overthink everything while we are in our bed. Negative thoughts and worries will keep you awake longer than you want, and it will also reduce your sleep quality. We recommend writing it all down in sleep journals before bed, that way you will express your thoughts and concerns, and you will feel more relaxed once you go to sleep.
- Exercise – there is no need to become a gym addict or run a marathon, but a small amount of physical activities did not harm anyone. When we exercise, our body produces endorphins which help us feel better about ourselves. It will also take some of our energy so we will feel more tired at the end of the day and sleep better.
Beauty Sleep Benefits
We gave you our tips and tricks which you need to follow if you want to see the beautifying effects of sleep. It is essential to be aware that beauty sleep is not some miraculous treatment that will magically beautify your appearance over the night. Beauty sleep works the best in cooperation with all the above-listed things which basically all suggest that you should nurture a healthy lifestyle in every possible aspect. In the end, we would like to point out the most important benefits that you can gain from beauty sleep.
- Morning glow – your complexion will be all glowy after a night of good sleep due to the enhanced blood circulation during the night. It works as a free spa rejuvenation treatment at home.
- Wrinkles – collagen production is another process that happens while we are sleeping and deals with our fine lines. Today collagen is the most popular ingredient of anti-age products because it gives skin youthful elasticity and plumpness.
- Eye-circles – our under-eye area tends to get darker and more prominent as we age, this can be connected with our genetics, but it is also associated with our sleep habits. The lack of sleep means less time for blood circulation which will show off as pronounced and dark circles under our eyes.
- Skincare – tired facial skin lacks hydration and circulation features which will prevent your skincare products to really show off what they can do. Only when the skin is well rested, it can cooperate properly with other beautifying skin care products.
- Hair – our hair will also feel the benefits of healthy sleep routine. During the night hair follicles are receiving restorative nutrients that are in charge of growth and strength, so when there is not enough time for that process to occur, our hair tends to become dry, damaged, it breaks easier and falls off too.
- Wellbeing – beauty sleep would not only show off its benefits on your face, but you will also feel much better from the inside. Once you wake up well rested, you will feel positive, more concentrated and in the right mood, and your body will be thankful.
She would be a morning person if mornings started at noon. Art historian, taurus, coffee lover, traveler, F1 fan who hates to drive, and well experienced insomniac with one life goal, to sleep like a coala for up to 20 hours per day.