While you are catching up on some much needed rest, your body has other ideas. While you sleep, your body and skin regenerates, repairs itself and absorbs your skin care much more effectively. Skin that hasn’t benefited from a good night’s sleep often looks puffy, dull and lifeless, undoing all the good work your skin care has done during the day.
Getting into a regular sleeping pattern is the best way to make a noticeable difference to your skin, as your body can prepare itself for the process that happens when we sleep.
There are four stages of sleep:
Stage 1: Light sleep, when you are just starting to drift off.
Stage 2: Onset of sleep, when your breathing and heart rate regulate.
Stage 3 & 4: Deepest sleep, when the body is at its most restorative.
It is recommended that being in bed by 11pm allows the skin optimum time to repair overnight, with the majority of these functions taking place between midnight and 4am.
While you sleep, your skin cells go into regeneration mode, replacing damaged or dead cells with new ones. Sun and environmental damage is repaired as the skin undergoes a natural exfoliation process where dead skin cells are removed and new ones take their place. When your sleep is interrupted, these processes can’t be completed and dead cells are left on the surface of the skin, causing blocked pores and blemishes.
During sleep, you feel more relaxed and cortisol (the stress hormone) production is reduced. Cortisol can contribute to many skin issues, from thinning skin to discolouration, so taking the time to relax and clear your mind before you go to bed can really help stop stress related skin complaints. As you slip into a deeper sleep, your blood flow becomes more regulated and is distributed more evenly throughout the body. This is great news for your skin as redness and wrinkles can be naturally tackled more successfully.
Night is the perfect time to use your more intensive skin care products, like rich hydrating creams, anti-aging serums and targeted acne treatments. The effectiveness of the products used during your morning skin care routine can be interrupted throughout the day by external factors from the environment and your make up. While you sleep, you are not exposed to these skin aggressors, so products have a better chance of sinking into the skin without disturbance.
It is also a good idea to apply other products at night such as hand cream, foot cream, lip balm and eye cream. Making these part of your night time ritual means you can wake up the next day with soft and smooth skin.
Skin that is well rested looks fresher, clearer and brighter compared to skin that isn’t which looks dull, lacklustre and puffy. You should try and get as much sleep as you can, as it can seriously improve your skin’s condition, keeping it looking younger for longer. They don’t call it beauty sleep for nothing.
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