Most people know that sleep is crucial for healthy mood, brain function, and even metabolism. But did you know that your skin needs sleep, too?
Having a regular sleep schedule sets your skin up for success; it stays hydrated, enjoys lots of nourishing blood circulation, detoxifies and fights blemishes, and is less likely to develop wrinkles and fine lines.
The trouble is, most of us don’t get the sleep we need on a regular basis. Between 50-70 million Americans are sleep deprived, which leads to skin issues and other, more severe health concerns.
There are endless reasons to start getting better sleep, but let’s start with your skin! Here we’ll show you how you can use simple routines and Chinese medicine to wake up to healthier skin.
Get Your Beauty Sleep: It’s not a myth!
If catching up on your beauty sleep sounds like just an excuse to lie in, think again. Your brain, body, and skin need sleep to function at their best.
During sleep, a crucial chain of events occurs to promote good health and balance. Within the first few hours of shut-eye, your pituitary gland produces a hormone called somatropin, or growth hormone. Growth hormone is necessary for skin repair and slows the aging process.
Melatonin is another hormone produced during sleep. Melatonin is best known for regulating the circadian rhythm, but it is also a powerful antioxidant. It protects the skin from free radicals, irritation, inflammation, and aging.
Later on in the night, you experience REM (rapid eye movement) sleep. During REM, your cortisol levels decrease and the skin’s temperature cools. This relaxes the muscles of the face and encourages collagen production. Reduced stress and increased collagen lead to youthful, resilient skin.
More Beauty Sleep Benefits
More sleep = hydrated skin.
Dermatologists explain that a lack of sleep can lower your pH levels, which dry skin out. Unfortunately, dry skin is more prone to dullness and wrinkles than nourished skin. With proper rest, however, you’ll keep your skin’s pH balanced and keep those wrinkles at bay.
The body increases circulation to the skin during sleep.
A lack of sleep also causes reduced circulation to the skin. Getting beauty sleep encourages the circulation of nutrient-rich blood to your face, giving you a youthful, healthy glow and rosy cheeks when you wake.
The skin makes collagen while we sleep.
Before you spend hundreds on fancy collagen creams, consider this: your body needs sleep to make collagen. If you’re consistently depriving yourself of the rest you (and your skin) need, no amount of collagen-boosting elixirs will help. Doctors estimate that getting 7 hours of sleep per night could lead to half as many fine lines as sleeping only 5 hours per night.
Reduced puffiness, acne, and irritation.
Quality sleep doesn’t just have anti-aging benefits. Enjoying more beauty sleep can also help your skin manage water and swelling, detoxify your pores, and heal irritation. If you struggle with inflamed or acne-prone skin, getting better sleep is essential to get your skin in balance.
How to Set Up a Healthy Sleep Schedule
It’s clear – your skin relies on healthy sleep to look and feel amazing. But what is healthy sleep?
For most people, healthy sleep is about 8 hours of continuous sleep per night. You should cycle through all sleep phases (light sleep, deep sleep, and REM sleep) multiple times. Ideally, there are no interruptions during sleep (like bathroom breaks, tossing and turning, or partial awakenings due to sleep apnea).
Here are a few general tips to get you started:
• Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep each night.
• Choose a bedtime and wake time that remains the same (even on weekends).
• Don’t drink large amounts of water or eat right before bed to avoid midnight bathroom breaks or stomachaches.
• Practice an evening wind-down ritual (like your skin care routine) about 1 hour to 30 minutes before bed to signal to your brain that it’s time for sleep.
• Keep your bedroom cool, dark, and free from stimulating distractions like a TV or computer.
Beauty Sleep Tips from Chinese Medicine
Want to make the most of your beauty sleep? Try these Chinese medicine-approved tips to help you boost your skin’s health even more while you snooze:
Use silk pillowcases.
There’s more to silk pillowcases than an elegant touch – they can help you prevent aging while you sleep. Conventional fabrics like cotton or synthetics wick moisture from your skin and can even stretch, wrinkle, or pull your skin during the night. Silk, however, is different. It doesn’t steal moisture from your face or cause wrinkles. Instead, it smoothes your skin and leaves it healthier than the night before.
During your cosmetic acupuncture treatments, we’ll use techniques like facial rejuvenation and microneedling to boost your collagen production, circulation, and hydration naturally. When paired with a great night’s sleep, the results are incredible!
Add gua sha to your nighttime routine.
If you haven’t tried gua sha yet, your skin is missing out! Gua sha is a simple therapy you can do at home to improve your skin’s tone and texture. It naturally reduces wrinkles and fine lines, lifts sagging areas, and flushes your skin with healthy hydration. As a bonus, gua sha is also very relaxing and instantly calms the mind. It’s the perfect before-bed ritual for glowing skin and a peaceful night’s sleep!
Drink rose tea with dinner.
Swap the rosé with rose tea for more beautiful skin by morning. Rose, or mei gui hua, is a subtle, yet nourishing Chinese herb used for gentle circulation, stress relief, and clear skin.
Wake Up Beautiful with the Beauty Within
Healthier-looking skin overnight sounds too good to be true. But by tapping into your body’s natural healing abilities, a good night’s sleep could help you wake up looking rejuvenated! From nourishing skin cells to creating abundant collagen, proper sleep is key to a holistic skincare routine.
But, good sleep can be hard to find. If you’re consistently up counting sheep (or you just want to get the best benefits from your beauty sleep), we can help! At The Beauty Within, we’ll help you feel restored with a healthy sleep schedule and boost your skin’s natural beauty all at the same time.