I’ve been reading a lot about sleep. You’ve heard it over and over again—Most of us need about 8-hours of good sleep every night. Check.
But it turns out there are also many scientific studies on the connection between sleep and your skin health. Let me jump ahead and tell you where this all leads: Turn off the lights sooner. You don’t need to stay up later to watch (just one more episode) on Netflix. Stop late-night binge-watching. And your Instagram feed really can wait until the morning.
A study led by physician-scientists at a major university (Case Western Medical Center) found that poor sleep increased signs of skin aging. ” Sleep deprived women show signs of premature skin aging and a decrease in their skin’s ability to recover after sun exposure,” said Dr. Elma Baron who led this study. Her team found big differences in the skin quality between good and poor sleepers. Those who didn’t get enough sleep showed, “…increased signs of intrinsic skin aging including fine lines, uneven pigmentation, slackening of skin and reduced elasticity.” This is because when you don’t get enough sleep, your body releases excess amounts of the stress hormone cortisol—which actually dehydrates the skin.
As for acne and breakouts…once again, lack of enough sleep can play a role. When you don’t get enough sleep your glandular system can get out of balance and secrete more oils at night and that coupled with dry skin can clog your pores…meaning more acne.
It’s a no-brainer, right? It’s not like we all need to be told we need to get enough sleep. But we really do. Really …and keeping your skin beautiful is just one more important reason.