“You need your beauty sleep,” the common adage goes. But what does sleep have to do with beauty? When it comes to your skin, a restful night means healthy, happy, beautiful skin.
At Med Physique Center for Aesthetics in Austin, Texas, our aestheticians have a wide variety of anti-aging and restorative treatment options for your skin; however, they recognize that unless you consistently get a good night’s sleep, your skin’s not going to respond as well as you hoped to any of them. Here’s why.
The link between restful sleep and healthy skin
Sleep plays a key role in maintaining and repairing the entire body, including the skin. Many restorative processes occur during sleep, such as:
- Increased production of growth hormone to help with muscle growth and rebuilding of cells
- Creation of hormones that prevent illness and fight infection
- Formation and maintenance of neural pathways in the brain related to learning and memory
- Cell turnover and renewal, with repair peaking during the night
These processes influence a person’s physical appearance, which may influence their self-perception of beauty and others’ perception of health and wellness.
A night of poor sleep can affect the skin, mouth, and eyes:
- Skin paler than usual
- Wrinkles and fine lines around mouth
- Drooping corners at mouth
- Drooping or hanging eyelids
- Red or swollen eyes
- Dark circles beneath eyes
Changes in appearance due to sleep deprivation may lead to many social implications. A small study looked at sleep deprivation and social perception and found that sleepy-looking people are seen as less attractive and less healthy, increasing their likelihood of being avoided by others.
Sleep directly affects a number of skin attributes:
Your skin is composed of several proteins, including collagen and elastin, that make it smooth, taut, and elastic. Without enough sleep, the immune system weakens, impacting the quality and strength of collagen produced. Without strong support, the skin wrinkles, leading to crow’s feet around the eyes and frown lines around the mouth and forehead.
A small study of Korean women in their 40s found that wrinkling started after just a single day of sleep deprivation and that the skin’s elasticity also significantly decreased.
Regular, good-quality sleep can also keep your complexion clear. Your circadian rhythm regulates the body’s internal clock, telling it when to sleep and wake, and controls functions of the body’s organs, including the skin.
At night, the skin receives its peak blood flow, which increases body temperature and helps repair damaged skin. The body’s peak time for repairing UV-damaged skin cells is in the early morning.
Insufficient sleep and late bedtimes are both linked to poor skin complexion, including peeling skin, skin dehydration, and glossy skin. Late bedtime is also associated with decreased skin hydration due to water loss and increased production of oily secretions, which can lead to some types of acne.
Reduces eye puffiness and dark circles
When blood flow is compromised, such as when you’re low on sleep, the blood can collect under the eyes and become visible as dark, puffy bags because the skin is so thin.
Discoloration can also be caused by genes, age, and increased melanin pigment; sleep deprivation can make your under-eye issues appear worse.
Skin care products work better
During restful slumber, your skin can focus on repairing itself instead of defending itself from sun and free radical damage. Blood flow is more consistent, too, helping your skin benefit from the rejuvenating ingredients in your skin care products.
One thing to consider is that skin loses more water when you’re asleep than during the day, so apply a creamier moisturizer before bed and hydrate well during the day.
Want to learn more about the benefits of sleep on your skin or try our many skin-enhancing treatments? Give Med Physique Center for Aesthetics a call at 512-361-2650, or book a consultation online with us today.