Sleep: the closest you may get to the Fountain of Youth.

Sleep: the closest you may get to the Fountain of Youth.

When it comes to your beauty routine, sleep may be the closest thing there is to a Fountain of Youth.” - Web MD, Beauty feature.

We love this sentiment, especially as it relates to ‘natural’ beauty. (As opposed to the many surgical and medical ‘fountains’ out there.) The truth is, beauty does come from within. It’s grown and replenished there, while you sleep.

We believe that sleep is the world’s easiest, and most effective, natural beauty regime. “If you were to change your sleeping hours from 6 or less per night to what you should be getting, the improvement would show in how you look after just 2 weeks” says Michael Breus, Phd and board certified sleep specialist. The hours you keep matter too. “The old adage, one hour before midnight is worth three afterward, is more true than you think” says Geoff Wright, Director of ‘The Hair and Beauty Partnership’ in London.

When you sleep, your body goes to work repairing and rebalancing your skin: from Ph to proteins like collagen. “More collagen means skin is plumper and less likely to wrinkle” says dermatologist, Patricia Wexler, MD. “Getting 5 hours sleep instead of 7 can lead to twice as many fine lines and drier skin”.

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine found in a recent study that just one night of poor sleep in older adults promotes what’s called ‘biological ageing’.

Your body also boosts blood flow to your skin when you sleep, giving you a healthy glow when you wake in the morning. Plenty of rest can also help minimize dark circles under your eyes; another tell-tale sign of tiny blood vessels ‘pooling’ under the thin delicate skin.

“Sleep deprivation causes a decrease in blood flow to the skin surrounding your face”, says Mr. Breus, “Skin becomes dull and those rosy cheeks disappear”.

When you’re sleeping the body’s hydration is rebalanced. Skin recovers moisture, while excess fluid is processed for removal. Poor sleep can result in poor water balance, leading to puffy bags under your eyes as well as skin dryness. And in turn, more visible wrinkles.

Your hair benefits while you sleep too. extra blood flow carries with it vital nutrients, vitamins and minerals to hair follicles in your scalp, helping hair to grow and stay healthy, Patricia Wexler says, “Lack of zzz’s can lead to more stress, which then causes an increase in the hormone cortisol, which can then cause hair loss”.

Susan Zafarlotfi, Clinical Director at the Institute of Wake and Sleep Disorders: “When you’re sleep deprived and running low on energy, you automatically reach for coffee and a doughnut, or other comfort foods.” It’s a vicious cycle. Without enough quality sleep, your metabolism doesn’t function properly. Eventually it sabotages your weight and your health.

Now, most people wouldn’t ordinarily connect beauty with sheep. Perhaps merino wool for couture fashion, but not for healthy complexions. Yet research has shown that wool to be the best natural fiber for sleep. Sleeping on and under wool has been found to give a 25% better sleep; that includes falling asleep faster, and getting more time in deep sleep. And deep sleep is where your body rejuvenates and repairs.

Sleep well now!