The Science Behind Beauty Sleep
While we understand that for overall health diet, exercise, and sleep are critical to our physical and emotional body, many people don’t realize the effect that a lack of sleep has on our skin and hair.
In fact, the expression, beauty sleep, is a real thing as a full night of quality rest (7 or more hours of sleep each night) provides the chemical and hormonal balance that our mind needs to keep the body’s systems functioning properly. After all, a lack of sleep means a lot more to our body than waking up cranky.
Here are five ways that sleep – or a lack of it – affects skin and hair.
Reduces the number of wrinkles
Put all those creams aside, sleeping 7+ hours each night is a better alternative to limiting wrinkles than facial creams. This is because when you sleep your mind send signals to parts of your body to begin repairing damage. Part of that repair process is creating more collagen which prevents your skin from sagging.
Losing as much as two hours of sleep each night can lead to twice as many wrinkles and also leave your skin dry and damaged.
Prevents hair loss from insomnia
Your hair is highly susceptible to disruptions in your physical and emotional health. Insomnia is one of the leading mental health diseases affecting Americans and is primarily caused by anxiety, depression, stress, and trauma which coincidentally have a direct relationship with hair growth.
Unfortunately, people who suffer from insomnia often face a cyclical effect where their sleep deprivation only creates greater mental health concerns.
Learning to overcome insomnia by managing a good diet, practicing mindfulness, and creating a bedroom conducive to sleep will also help improve your hair growth.
Improves your glow
Sleep deprivation decreases the blood flow in your body, while an adequate amount of sleep improves your body’s blood flow. Blood provides oxygen to cells and tissues as well as essential nutrients, while also removing waste. In addition, it protects your body from infection.
What all of this means is that a good blood flow ensures that your body is functioning well and your skin’s cells and tissue is looking its best. A lack of blood flow creates the appearance of ashen skin rather than a rosy and creamy look.
Regulates oil production
Sleep deprivation is often caused by an excessive workload which often leads to a lack of showers and a buildup of oils in your hair and skin. While this is a common occurrence, it is also remedied simply by taking a shower. However, the effects of sleep deprivation also affect how your body regulates oil production. Sleep plays a vital role in regulating hormones in your body and when you don’t sleep enough your hormones and body function may go a bit out of whack. The stress caused by a lack of sleep actually causes increased oil production which can lead to flat hair which has limited luster and less bounce.
Melatonin is a hormone produced to alert your body that it is time to sleep. A lack of sleep affects the production of melatonin in your body. Melatonin helps to regulate your sleep as well as promote hair growth and even creates an environment required for protein synthesis of your hair. A lack of melatonin production not only leads to poor quality of sleep but also split ends, and lack of strength in your hair.
Sleep is important for the overall health of your skin and hair. It helps to regulate the oil production and blood flow to keep your hair strong and healthy and your skin wrinkle-free and glowing.
"Lisa is a freelance writer from Raleigh, NC in love with all things beauty. While she doesn't have her own blog, you can see some of her other published work at Mattress Advisor where she regularly contributes sleep health content."