Around 35% of US adults aren’t getting the recommended seven hours of sleep a night and the CDC warns that this fact can lead to a plethora of serious health conditions – including heart disease, obesity, and Type 2 diabetes.
One thing we hear much less of, is the effect that poor sleep can have on our skin. One recent study has shown that it leads to aging skin, impacting the way that skin cells function. Men wishing to sport youthful, firm, even skin should make quality sleep a greater priority, ensuring they wake up feeling renewed and rejuvenated.
Why Is Sleep Essential For Good Skin?
The study, commissioned by global beauty brand Estée Lauder, showed that those who do not sleep enough hours recovered much more slowly from environmental stressors such as disruption of the skin barrier or damage from UV rays. Poor sleep causes skin to age before its time, leading to problems like poor elasticity, unevenness, pigmentation, fine lines, and slackening. Those who have poor sleep quality also recover more slowly from sunburn and have a worse perception of their own attractiveness.
The Good News For Men
The good news for those who aren’t heavy sleepers is that men actually can get by with a little less sleep than women. Jim Horne, a leading neuroscientists specialising in the area of sleep, found that women need between 20 to 30 minutes more rest per night. There is a proviso, however: men who carry out high level jobs also need more sleep. Horne notes: “men who have complex jobs, which involve a lot of decision-making and lateral thinking are also likely to need more sleep than the average male.”
Is Your Sleep Quality Poor?
Sleep quantity is one thing; sleep quality is another. You need both to obtain optimal benefits for your skin. According to the National Sleep Foundation, quality sleep involves four things: falling asleep within half an hour of getting into bed, sleeping for at least 85% of the time you are in bed, not waking up more than once during the night, and not being awake for more than 20 minutes once you have slept. If you are missing out on more than one of these, it’s time to make a few important changes.
If you’ve been sleeping on the same mattress for over 10 years, it’s definitely time to make a change. It is vital to read different mattress reviews before making a choice, because it is vital to sleep on a bed with the right firmness for your sleeping position. If you sleep on your side, for instance, a mattress with memory foam will ensure your hips and shoulders are well supported. If you sleep on your back, greater firmness will ensure you don’t get lower back pain. Pillows are also important; make sure your pillow isn’t causing neck pain. Choose comfortable bed linen too; cool Egyptian cotton is the way to go for ultimate comfort and coolness.
Make sure your bedroom is cool and dark. Rely on insulation or soundproofing if you live in a noisy area. Your interiors should contain calming colors like green, blue, or lavender, and should be tidy and appealing to reduce stress. Try to keep gadgets and TVs in another room to avoid the temptation of staying up late surfing the Internet or checking your messages.
To ensure your skin is firm, toned, and even, good sleep is as important as a healthy diet. Poor sleep reduces your skin’s ability to stay in optimal condition despite environmental stressors. Ensure your bedroom is dark, quiet, and comfortable, paying special attention to your bed and pillow.