Why beauty sleep could be the key to skincare success.
A dreamy night’s sleep can be amazing for our body and mind, but how can it benefit our skin? With that golden target of 8 hours a night in mind, the impact of getting enough sleep on your complexion, as well as the deeper workings of your skin, could be second to none. Plus - it won’t cost you a dime. Here’s why a good night’s sleep could be your biggest beauty investment to date.
So, what’s ACTUALLY happening whilst we sleep?
Sleep is the time that allows us to rest and repair. When we’re asleep, we secrete anti-stress and anti-inflammatory hormones that work to calm the skin, all the while, encouraging cell turnover. The human growth hormone (HGH) is responsible for this boost in skin repair, doing all that extra work while we sleep to prep us perfectly for our routine the following morning.
The hours between 9pm and 11pm are widely known as the “evening” phase, which is when our bodies begin to slow down for the day. Notably, our skin does the same, making it the time that it’s most able to benefit from treatments (hello, Radiance Ritual). In unison, melatonin - the sleep hormone, begins to speed up production, inducing a feeling of sleepiness so our bodies and skin both know it’s time for bed.
During our nighttime hours, we aren’t exposed to the day-to-day environmental aggressors that can have a serious impact on our skin, like heavy pollution, sunlight and the build up of daily dirt. This creates the dream setting for repair, with the skin being up to three times more efficient at regeneration during a good night’s sleep.
Taking advantage of the skin’s natural regenerative boost, it’s a key opportunity to maximise the use of your powerhouse skincare ingredients - like AHA’s, BHA’s and retinoids, as they’re able to deeply penetrate the skin whilst it repairs. These ingredients are also best integrated into your PM routine, rather than used in the morning, as they increase skin’s photosensitivity, making whilst you sleep the prime time to use them.
The elusive quest for beauty sleep
Looking for a new anti-aging treatment? Enter beauty sleep. Almost as widely touted as drinking your 8 glasses of water a day, 8 hours of good quality sleep is irreplaceable when it comes to looking fresh, revitalised and youthful.
Whilst we all seek the visible benefits of a good night’s sleep, your body is working hard in the areas you can’t see, producing the growth hormones that maximise the production of collagen. For those that don’t know, collagen is a structural protein that’s key to plumper, visibly fuller skin, and something that reduces in production as we age. Not just a wonder-worker for skin, collagen is also responsible for strengthening hair and nails too.
Important to note, we’re all about aging gracefully. Your lines, creases and crinkles show you love life, and we’re down with that. Remember, healthy skin doesn’t have an age limit.
Not getting enough?
When it comes to sleep, we’re all constantly reminded that we should be aiming for those magic 8 hours. But what happens if we miss the mark? We know there are times that this infamous number just isn’t possible, but what happens when a bad night’s sleep turns into a downright nightmare sleeping pattern.
When we aren’t getting enough sleep, our body begins to produce an excess of stress hormones, like cortisol - essential for rise and shine in the morning, not so ideal when it’s panic waking us at 3am. An excess of these stress hormones push your skin into a pro-inflammatory state. This increase in inflammation can be responsible for breakouts, puffiness and dark circles, plus a complexion seriously lacking in glow.
As we’re all different, we don’t all necessarily NEED a full 8 hours. It’s the benchmark we use for the many, but that doesn’t mean that some of our body’s can’t thrive on less - or more! Know your own body and when you feel at your best, because that’s the key to sleep (and skincare) success.
While our skin is more active as we snooze, it’s also more permeable, which makes this a GREAT time to make the most of your beauty products. On the other hand, what can get in can also then easily get out, with your skin susceptible to losing all that juicy moisture too.
Transepidermal water loss (known as TEWL) is a totally normal process, but it means the skin is at its driest come morning and it’s barrier can become compromised, especially if lack of sleep has put extra strain and caused inflammation. The result? Redness, dehydration, irritation and lack of plumpness. But we’re all about solutions, and the products you spend the night with can help...
It’s all in the skincare routine
THE NIGHT BEFORE
Getting your products right before a night’s sleep can feel like a challenge, but we’re here to help. So let’s start with a good clean canvas. Cleansing your skin is essential when it comes to good skincare, so start by washing away the sins of the day with a double cleanse. Cleansing virgin? Check out our intensive guide to all things cleanser here.
WHILST YOU SLEEP
There are a plethora of products that lend themselves to the nighttime hours, but mainly, we want to focus on two key areas. Products that will boost and assist skin cell renewal, and those that add to and lock in all that hydration. Hyaluronic Acids - or intensive, rich oils if you’re particularly dry - are perfect aids for the latter, whilst retinoids, or opting for alternatives like Bakuchiol, are brilliant for pushing forward with the repair process. Needless to mention, the exfoliating power of the glycolic and salicylic combo in our Radiance Ritual also works a treat.
THE MORNING AFTER
Top up the moisture factor after the loss of hydration overnight with a good, generously creamy moisturiser, full of soothing ingredients to help calm any inflammation that’s occurred whilst you’ve been sleeping. One of - if not, the- most vital skincare hero in your routine is SPF, so liberally apply every morning, especially important if you’ve been using acids or retinoids in your routine. Want to know more about SPFs? Read why they’re a daily essential here.
Seeking better sleep? Here’s how...
As simple as getting enough shut eye sounds, we all know that there are times it’s easier said than done. However, there are some failsafe ways to maximise your chances of feeling ready to drift off to sleep come bedtime.
SAY GOODNIGHT TO SCREEN TIME
In this day and age, we live a huge amount of our lives through screens , but did you know that cutting your devices out for the last few hours of the day can help you to feel rested and recuperated come morning? This is because the bright blue light emitted by your phone or tablet actually mimics the idea that it’s the middle of the day, preventing the production of melatonin - aka. the sleep hormone. In regards to skin health, new studies have shown that excessive blue light exposure can have an equally detrimental effect on skin. We know it’s not always practical to ditch your phone as soon as daylight falls, but avoid the dreaded “insomnia scroll” by leaving your devices in another room or if it doubles up as your alarm, pop it out of reach an hour or so before bed.
CUT DOWN ON YOUR WIND-DOWN WINE
Catching up over a tipple can be a relaxing way to wind down at the end of the week or socialise with friends, but studies show that alcohol consumption too close to bedtime can cause sleep issues. Alcohol is a known rapid eye movement (REM) sleep inhibitor, and as REM occurs during the deepest stage of sleep, it’s during these same hours that much needed cell regeneration occurs. We’re partial to a little glass of something we fancy, but make sure you’re putting the bottle away at least 90 minutes before bed. Needless to say, excessive alcohol consumption is, among many other things, no good when seeking glowy, healthy skin or deep, good quality sleep.
NAIL YOUR BEDTIME RITUALS
Something we can’t emphasise enough is the importance of relaxation rituals to get you prepped for bed. Running a bath, evening yoga stretches, spraying a calming room fragrance and, of course, committing to a regular skincare routine are all effective ways to prep before a good night’s sleep. Journaling can be a great way to get the thoughts, anxieties and worries of the day off your mind, leaving you free to drift away into the land of nod.
Need a new evening ritual? Our Radiance Ritual mask is here to help! With few things feeling more indulgent than a mask that you can actually feel working- thanks to that tingle on application, there’s no better time to get masking than just before bedtime. Using a mask packed full of potent glycolic and salicylic acids at nighttime will give you a head start at gorgeous skin come morning.