When we sleep, our cells divide and repair, growth hormones are released, and our mind and body are able to “reset” and prepare for the upcoming day.
When we lack sleep, these processes are interrupted and wreck havoc on our body….including your skin and appearance!
Specific to skin, did you know that when you lack sleep…
- Your body produces more free radicals, which dramatically increases the signs of aging (wrinkles, fine lines, etc.)?
- Your skin’s ability to stay hydrated and supple diminishes rapidly, leading to a dull, dehydrated appearance?
- Your skin’s ability to defend and protect itself from chemicals and pollutants in the environment takes a nose dive, leaving your skin and body susceptible to acne, infection, and other unsightly consequences?
Sleep is vital for healthy, beautiful skin, as well as for your emotional state and well-being.
My question to you is: Do you get enough sleep?
If not, here are 5 tips you can increase your hours between the sheets (sleeping) and simultaneously care for your skin, appearance, and well-being:
Tip #1: Develop a bedtime routine.
Developing a routine before bed will help you wind down and prepare your body for a good night’s sleep.
Too often we work or stay active until we collapse in bed. While this may feel satisfying, this behavior doesn’t allow your body the downtime it needs to shut down.
Ever have trouble falling asleep? This tip can help turn things around for you. So, instead of staying active until bed time, try taking a bath, or reading a book, or doing some light, meditative stretching.
Tip #2: Start your day at night.
Arianna Huffington, president and editor-in-chief at the Huffington Post, says that she starts her day the night before.
If she has to get up at 7 AM on Monday morning, she makes sure she’s in bed by 11PM on Sunday night. This allows her to get 8 full hours of beauty sleep before her day starts.
You can do the same!
Tip #3: Avoid sleep distractions.
We live in a distraction-filled world and our lives are littered with electronic devices: from TV to your 21″ laptop to your 4″ or larger phone.
Whether you’re checking email, preparing for a big presentation, or just watching some cats singing in the bathtub on YouTube, these seemingly minor activities prevent our brains from shutting down.
In fact, looking at electronic devices within an hour before bed has been linked to insomnia and a lack of sound sleep.
It’s smart to shut down your brain by shutting down your devices. That way, you can go to bed on time and get the sleep you need.
Don’t worry….your emails and those cute videos will still be there tomorrow 😉
Tip #4: Get regular exercise.
By getting exercise during the day, you not only burn calories and energy, you increase your circulation and decrease the toxins in your muscles.
In turn, your body is able to supply more oxygen and nutrients to your skin, while eliminating dangerous poisons that can negatively affect your skin and complexion.
Shoot for at least 30 minutes of exercise each day. Go for a walk. Take a yoga or spin class. Make it fun by doing something you enjoy. Exercise has many benefits and getting a better night’s sleep is one of those.
Tip #5: Take a nap.
Not only is Arianna Huffington a fan of planning her bedtime (tip #2), she’s a fan of occasional naps on her office couch. She stated in a recent article, “napping is the best thing we can do to recharge ourselves.”
Huffington Post and other forward-thinking companies are encouraging naps during the work day to help employees be more productive. Your job may not let you take naps on the job, but that shouldn’t stop you when you’re off work (as long as it’s not too late).
Naps that last for 20-30 minutes can help you recharge, refresh, and rejuvenate your mind – and even help you reset a bad day.
Be sure to set a gentle alarm to wake you. That way you don’t nap too long.
Great skin starts with a great night’s sleep. Use the simple tips here to get the sleep you need to protect and keep your skin healthy and beautiful.