Sleep isn't something that we usually think about. After a night of deep or uninterrupted sleep, we tend to feel refreshed, energized, and alert which leads to better cognition and optimal function throughout our days.
There's no question that sleep is important. It has the same importance as exercise or eating a nutritious breakfast to give you energy for the day. Getting sufficient, quality sleep can provide numerous benefits for your physical, mental, and emotional being.
So sleep isn’t something we usually think about; that is, until we are no longer getting adequate or quality sleep. According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), 70% of adults report that they obtain insufficient sleep at least one night a month, and 11% report insufficient sleep every night.
Long-term sleep deprivation is a major culprit of chronic fatigue and can often lead to an increased dependence on morning stimulants like caffeine, hence perpetuating a vicious cycle of exhaustion and chemical dependency.
While sleep disorders are becoming more pervasive in our society at large, they can greatly vary based on ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds. According to the National Institutes of Health, “50 to 70 million Americans of all ages within the same socioeconomic class are affected by sleep-related problems. Sleep disorders are common in both men and women; however, important disparities in prevalence and severity of certain sleep disorders have been identified in minorities and underserved populations.”
What happens when you're chronically sleep-deprived?
We might get used to pulling all-nighters or binge-watching a tv show until the early morning hours. Little do we know that these unhealthy habits can have long-term negative effects such as chronic sleep deprivation.
When we are chronically sleep deprived, our bodies usually build insulin resistance and increase blood pressure. The more you are sleep deprived - exposing yourself to the problems that come with that - the more you’re denying yourself the opportunity to catch up on sleep.
Numerous scientific studies warn us about the risks of heart disease (because sleep deprivation can increase blood pressure), Type 1 Diabetes, depression, obesity, various mental illnesses, a 36% increase in the risk of colorectal cancer, not to mention skin related issues such as facial breakouts or under-eye circles and puffiness.
How sleep deprivation affects your skin
The likelihood of getting acne is also high when you are sleep-deprived. Failing to get sufficient, quality sleep has been shown to cause stress in the body, which can lead to a spike in cortisol levels.
This in turn can lead to inflammation and an increased production of sebum which results in clogged pores and eventually, breakouts in your face.
How can you prevent & manage breakouts caused by sleep deprivation?
Find ways to improve your sleep hygiene. It’s well known that sleep provides an opportunity for your body to restore itself: tissues rebuild, muscles grow, hormones are synthesized, accumulated toxic substances are eliminated, and memories are processed and stored.
In fact, research has shown that getting sufficient, quality sleep yields numerous benefits including a faster metabolism, increased concentration and productivity, better mood, improved immune function, and healthy skin, hair, and nails.
Want better sleep? Start with a bedtime ritual!
There are a number of ways to improve your sleep, and one of my favorites is to create a bedtime ritual for yourself. This might include enjoying a cup of herbal tea, taking a warm bath, light reading, listening to relaxing music, gentle stretching, and/or putting away all electronic devices at least one hour before bed.
These are all wonderful ways to slow down and prepare your mind and body for the rest that it needs. Another bedtime ritual you can also consider is tending to your skin. Sure, you might already be washing, toning, and moisturizing -- but do you truly savor the moments of your nightly skincare routine or do you complete it mindlessly, just going through the motions?
If the latter, this is your opportunity to slow down, take deep breaths, and turn your skincare routine into a beauty ritual that promotes self-love and nourishment. I personally love to relax with a gemstone eye mask at the start of my nightly ritual!
A simple nighttime beauty ritual might look like this: cleansing, toning, and moisturizing with products that are suitable for your skin’s needs (i.e. skin type). For example, if you have oily or acne-prone skin, you might want to consider a natural exfoliant like our Matcha Buffing Grains, an oil balancing toner like Brighten Facial Toner, and a lightweight moisturizing serum like Glow Facial Oil. If you’re suffering from an active breakout, you could consider a healing salve like Soothe Salve to help alleviate redness and inflammation.
Now that you have created a night-time beauty ritual for yourself, you may also want to consider the area where you sleep. It can be comforting to sleep on soft pillows, but keep in mind that your pillowcases should be washed regularly or disinfected to prevent unwanted bacterial growth.
Why your pillow cases need to be washed regularly
Did you know that over time, your pillowcase collects dirt, sebum, and dead skin cells? This might be another reason why your skin is breaking out! To help minimize breakouts that might be attributed to dirty pillowcases, we recommend that you wash them often and, in between washings, apply a bit of added protection with our Sleep Pillow Mist.
This pillow spray contains a relaxing blend of bergamot, lavender, and cedarwood oils, purified water, and cane alcohol - ingredients that come from Mother Nature herself.
One of Sleep Pillow Mist’s key ingredients is lavender. Other than it being one of my favorite herbs for relieving stress and anxiety, lavender promotes restful sleep and also has amazing properties for the skin. Lavender is naturally anti-inflammatory and antibacterial, which does wonders for the skin such as providing relief for redness and sunburn to healing blemishes and acne.
Sleep Pillow Mist can be lightly sprayed onto pillowcases to keep germs at bay between washings. This is something you’ll want to consider, especially if you’re a side sleeper with acne-prone skin!
Ready to get quality sleep?
Sleep is a very important part of your day-- it has a huge impact on your mood, energy levels, health, and your skin! So why not set yourself up for sleep success by creating a relaxing bedtime beauty ritual? And let’s not forget about herbs like lavender and bergamot which are found in our Sleep Pillow Mist. It not only smells ahh-mazing but can help you unwind and relax while keeping your pillowcases clear of blemish-causing bacteria!
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