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Jun 08, 2017
by Vivant Skin Care
Is there anything worse than arriving at work and being greeted with the words, “you look tired”?
What was the giveaway? An errant yawn? Maybe, but more likely the dark circles, puffy eyes, dull complexion, and dry skin.
The concept of beauty sleep is not just a colloquial phrase. It’s an undeniable truth. During sleep, your body regenerates and repairs damage done throughout the day from UV and other environmental exposure. Sleep, especially deep sleep (i.e. the REM cycle), is the period when antioxidants get supercharged to fight free radicals. It’s also the time in which the growth hormones responsible for repairing and regenerating collagen-producing cells get to work.
Blood vessels dilate to increase the flow of nutrients and oxygen to skin, which helps remove toxins and promote brighter complexion. Cortisol, the stress hormone, which causes a thinning of the skin and an increase in oil production, is decreased during sleep. At the same time, melatonin, the sleep hormone, increases creating a natural antioxidant effect that helps combat aging skin.
If you want to go deeper into the science, there’s also the little matter of telomere repair. Telomeres are essentially little caps at the ends of chromosomes that protect DNA. Longer telomeres are associated with youthful, healthy cells. Shorter telomeres mean increased and premature cellular aging. Telomeres shorten naturally with age, but things like oxidative stress can accelerate the process. The body produces an enzyme called telomerase that recaps and elongates shortened telomeres which prevents, and possibly reverses, cellular aging. Good quality sleep stimulates the telomerase enzyme, slowing cell aging and causing them to function like younger cells.
Quality shut-eye is not just essential for keeping your mind sharp. It’s essential for keeping your skin healthy and glowing. Seven to nine hours a night is ideal. Less than that, and it’s going to show in your glow, or lack thereof. Even the most effective products can’t make your skin look its best without quality sleep as your foundation.
If you drink within 90 minutes of falling asleep, you’re going to disrupt your body’s ability to enter the all-important REM sleep during which all the important repair and regeneration occurs. Stay away from alcohol later in the evening to avoid the cascade effect of tired, puffy, aging skin.
Studies have shown people who read on a tablet before bed have reduced sleepiness, shorter REM cycles and secrete less melatonin. Use a filter to cut the blue light, or better yet, just cut out the screen time for a better night’s sleep.
If you’re ruminating on the day’s events as your settle down for the night, you’ll have trouble falling asleep and getting into the deepest, most restful stages of sleep. Try some mindful meditation, a couple of downward dogs, or a relaxing bath before bed to clear your head and catch some zzzz-s.
Take advantage of your body’s own nightly repair cycle by using products that boost cellular repair. With cellular repair and regeneration at its peak during the sleep cycle, this is the perfect time to use products that accelerate cell turnover and boost collagen production for maximum effect. Products that feature vitamin A, peptides and antioxidants are top of the list for night time renewal. A good nourishing moisturizer is often a good choice for night too as skin tends to lose moisture during sleep.
Derm-A-Renew: The Glow Enhancer
Key Ingredients: Retinyl Propionate (Vitamin A), Oligopeptides, Lactic Acid, Kojic Acid
A gentle, luxuriant serum that increases cell turnover, while boosting collagen and elastin production to reveal luminous, youthful skin.
Wink Eye Rejuvenation Cream: The Eye Opener
Key Ingredients: Retinyl Propionate (Vitamin A), Oligopeptides, Caffeine, Grape Seed Oil
Speed cell regeneration, brighten dark circles, reduce puffiness and smooth fine lines with this high-performance, antioxidant- and nutrient-rich cream. Lightweight formula, heavyweight results.
Marine Skin Nourishing Cream: The Nourisher
Key Ingredients: Grape Seed Oil, Sea Algae Extract, Oat Protein, Whole Leaf Aloe
Packed with intensely nourishing and reparative antioxidants and bioactive marine minerals, amino acids and sea proteins to replenish and restore suppleness and elasticity.
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