Why Sleep Is Like Wrinkle Cream
Although beauty sleep may seem like a myth, the truth is that wrinkles are closely linked to your sleep schedule. Sleep is almost like a wrinkle cream — invest in a consistent sleep routine, and your skin may thank you. Considering how much skin serums cost these days, the best part may be that sleep doesn’t cost a thing.
A lack of quality sleep puts our bodies in a state of stress, so our internal systems prioritize main functions over maintenance. Unfortunately, the skin is an organ that is pretty low on the priority list.
The reason is tied to hormones and collagen.
As we age, the lack of collagen is the primary driver of aging symptoms such as wrinkles and sagging skin, says Diane Elizabeth, a beauty expert and founder of Skin Care Ox, a skin care blog.
“After the age of 20, our collagen production begins to decline and this decline rapidly accelerates as we age,” she says. “Collagen is responsible for the strength and structure of our skin.”
“Because of the increased inflammation and stress caused by poor sleep habits, our bodies simply cannot produce collagen at an efficient pace. This can cause our skin to age much faster than typical.”
The Science of “Beauty Sleep”
Bill Fish, a certified sleep science coach and cofounder of Tuck.com, says the first part of the nightly sleep cycle experiences a surge in growth hormones that repair and rebuild body tissue and cells. This cell production helps counteract skin damage from things like ultraviolet rays and stress, and comprises what most people refer to as beauty sleep. We need to give our bodies an uninterrupted sleep for the recommended 7-9 hours, for the natural repair of our skin.
Is there a position of sleep that is best to help avoid wrinkles? Yes. According to Fish, sleeping on your back is best for your face.
“When we sleep on our backs, only the back of our head that is compressed against the pillow,” he explains, “whereas sleeping on our sides results in putting half of our face across the pillow for hours at a time that doesn’t allow for circulation, and could also lead to skin sag.”
Get Your Zzzs
According to Elizabeth, poor sleep can also cause the blood vessels under the eyes to dilate, expand, and become more prominent, creating under eye circles.
“Studies have shown that a lack of sleep can cause our bodies to produce more stress hormones like cortisol, which can increase our levels of internal inflammation,” tells Elizabeth. “A body in a state of sleep deprivation will not fight oxidative stress, produce collagen, or stimulate cell repair in an efficient manner.”
While sleep isn’t a magic cure for wrinkles, Elizabeth says it is certainly one of the simplest preventative methods.
“If you already have wrinkles (not caused by a lack of sleep), then it’s unlikely that a good night’s sleep will repair your existing wrinkles,” she notes. “However, great sleep can keep our bodily systems running effectively, which can prevent future unnecessary wrinkles from forming.”
Like diet and exercise, quality sleep is essential for optimal health and performance. Sleep Number 360® smart beds, with SleepIQ® technology inside, sense your movements and automatically adjust firmness, comfort and support to keep you both sleeping blissfully, all night long. Find your Sleep Number® setting for your best possible night’s sleep.
Photo by Jose A.Thompson on Unsplash