The story of Sleeping Beauty arouses envy in many who struggle to get a good night’s sleep. Though sleep may seem like an extravagance you can’t afford, the truth is you can’t afford not to sleep.
Research shows how the body heals itself during sleep and there’s more truth to the term “beauty sleep” than you may realize. While your brain may be sleeping your body is quite active, healing the skin from daily environmental damages and restoring healthy hormone levels. Poor sleep has a profoundly negative impact on your immune system, body weight, and mental health but the effects of sleep deprivation on skin and beauty are less studied.
Here’s what you need to know about what happens to your body during sleep and the skin-supporting benefits of a good night’s rest.
What happens to your body during sleep?
The average person spends roughly one-quarter to one-third of their life asleep but not all sleep is the same. Each night, your brain cycles through two different types of sleep: rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep and non-REM sleep. It’s during the REM sleep cycle that your body produces growth hormones and creates new cells to heal your body from the day’s damage.
Though the biological role of sleep is not fully understood, research suggests it plays a role in reinforcing bodily systems and helps regulate the metabolism. During non-REM sleep your breathing slows but it speeds up during REM sleep. Your heart rate changes throughout the course of the night as well, your muscles relax, and your body’s energy expenditure drops. Hormones like melatonin help you fall asleep and stay asleep while growth hormone supports muscle and bone development.
In addition to affecting your body’s physical function, sleep affects brain function as well. You may have noticed your ability to concentrate decreases after a night of poor sleep. Sleep deprivation may even cause physical symptoms such as high blood pressure, depression, and migraines. It could even compromise your immune system, increasing your risk for illness.
The benefits of a good night’s sleep
Sleep deprivation is nothing to joke about. In fact, sleep is essential for optimal health and wellness. Lack of sleep may increase your cravings for sweet and salty foods, and it can increase your risk for unwanted weight gain. Without a good night’s sleep, you may have a greater risk for anxiety, depression, irritability, and fuzzy thinking. You may also have a higher risk for heart disease and dementia.
Fortunately, getting a good night’s sleep might be easier than you think. By taking advantage of Kally Sleep solutions you can enjoy deep, uninterrupted sleep night after night. In just a few minutes, the Kally Sleep Pillow Finder Quiz can put you on the path to better sleep by helping you find the perfect pillow for your sleep style.
With Kally Sleep by your side, you’ll have no trouble getting the quality sleep you need and, before you know it, you’ll be reaping the mind and body benefits of better sleep. Here are a few of the science-backed benefits you’ll have to look forward to.
- Relief from puffy eyes and dark circles
Looking in the mirror after a night of tossing and turning you shouldn’t be surprised to see dark circles under your eyes. Puffy eyes and dark circles are a common consequence of insufficient sleep, but the good news is you can fix the problem. Over time, getting enough sleep will restore your bright and glowing eyes.
Try sleeping on your back and prop your head up with a Back Sleeper or Adjustable Pillow to boost blood flow to the face and prevent blood from pooling under your eyes while you sleep. If you do wake with dark circles under your eyes, try applying a cold compress to resolve swelling and to shrink dilated blood vessels.
- Fewer acne breakouts
Sleep deprivation doesn’t directly cause acne, but it can be a contributing factor. Acne develops when hair follicles (or pores) become clogged with dirt, dead skin cells, and sebum. Chronic stress and changing hormone levels can alter the environment in your skin, increasing oil production which can exacerbate breakouts. Getting seven to nine hours of sleep may help reduce stress and support hormone regulation to prevent breakouts from happening.
Though sleep and stress reduction can help prevent breakouts, severe cases of acne may need a little extra help. If over-the-counter spot treatments aren’t working, try a personalized prescription acne treatment to target the factors triggering your acne and to get breakouts back under control.
- Anti-aging protection from fine lines and wrinkles
Blood flow to the epidermis increases during sleep, providing your skin with the oxygen- and nutrient-rich blood it needs to heal and repair itself. Collagen production also ramps up at night, helping rebuild the skin to prevent the visible signs of aging including fine lines, sagging, and wrinkles. Experts suggest getting just five hours of sleep per night can lead to twice as many fine lines as getting seven hours of sleep. Sleep deprivation can also contribute to dry skin which may make fine lines more apparent.
- Stronger and healthier skin
Sleep is when your body takes the time to heal and repair itself – this includes your skin. In fact, sleep is directly correlated with skin health. If you don’t give your body time to heal, it could worsen existing skin conditions. Fortunately, it only takes a few consecutive nights of good sleep to bounce back. A couple nights of quality sleep can restore healthy blood flow to the skin, resulting in plumper skin with more even skin tone.
- Improved weight management
Hormonal changes during sleep play a role in regulating your body weight and metabolism. Ghrelin, also known as the hunger hormone, stimulates the appetite and promotes fat storage. Research reveals that higher levels of ghrelin are correlated with restricted sleep, so lack of sleep could increase your appetite and contribute to unwanted weight gain. Sleep also helps normalize levels of cortisol, a stress hormone, which may also promote overeating and weight gain.
Though the term “beauty sleep” may be something of a cliché, there’s some truth to it. Getting a good night’s rest is essential for optimal health and wellness, including skin health. Give yourself a solid seven to eight hours to sleep each night and cultivate healthy sleep by investing in a supportive mattress, comfy pillows, and cozy bedding from Kally Sleep.