Why Better Sleep Yields Better Skin

Better sleep yields better skin, and so do certain bedtime habits, like using a humidifier. Here are all the ways to sleep your way to clearer complexion.
Why Better Sleep Yields Better Skin

Never underestimate the power of a good night’s rest. A solid 7 or 8 hours can make a huge difference in how you look and feel the following day. And, when you make it a habit to get quality sleep every night, the long-term benefits are exceptional for mind and body—including your skin health.

When you get good quality rest, your body regenerates itself, or rather, all of your cells go into regenerative mode. This helps all of your bodily functions to stay as active and diligent as possible, including the cellular turnover that happens on the surface of your skin. This is a process that happens naturally anyway, but it is extremely accelerated during slumber. 

This makes bedtime the best time to boost your skincare results. Just pair a proactive skincare regimen with a few pro-skin sleep strategies and you could have clearer, brighter, firmer complexion in a matter of weeks—not to mention, you’ll wake up looking more rested and rejuvenated on the regular.

Nighttime Skincare

Here is what a baseline nighttime skincare regimen should look like, as well as additional ways to bolster your results with an extra product or few.

Baseline Nighttime Skincare Regimen

1. Cleanse every night: Use gentle, nourishing, and pore-clearing face wash to flush away any sweat, oil, grime, and product. This will also “reset” the skin for any new products you apply, and will help to keep your pillowcase cleaner for longer.

2. Exfoliate regularly: Exfoliation is the practice of removing dead skin cells so that they don’t build up into dry or rough patches, and so that they don’t get trapped inside the pores and cause breakouts. It’s important to exfoliate somehow—with a physical exfoliant like a face scrub or a washcloth, or with a chemical exfoliant like glycolic, lactic, and/or salicylic acid. Also, the regular use of retinol can help improve exfoliation. Every product and ingredient has different directions on how frequently you should use them, so be sure to abide by those instructions (that’s what we mean by “exfoliate regularly”). You don’t want to over exfoliate, because it could severely irritate the skin. We always advise exfoliating at night, though, since it can leave skin a little tender or irritated; that way, you can sleep it off and wake up with a fresher, clearer face.

3. Moisturize: Just as it’s important to use an SPF moisturizer in the daytime, it’s imperative to use an ultra hydrating one in the evening. This ensures that your skin stays protected against any excessive dryness in the air (like from an air conditioner or from seasonal/local elements). It’s also a way to trap any serums or active ingredients inside the skin so they can get to work without compromise from surrounding environmental factors. Our lightweight gel moisturizer boosts and retains hydration without feeling heavy on skin or transferring to your pillowcases.

Advanced Nighttime Skincare

1. Eye cream: Because the skin around your eyes is so much thinner and more delicate than anywhere else, it requires a higher concentration of firming ingredients (namely peptides) to help boost its elasticity. Your nighttime routine is the absolute best time to improve this (with an eye cream) and can help you wake up with fewer dark circles and under eye bags, too.

2. Retinol: Vitamin-A derivatives like retinol can help improve cellular turnover in the skin over the course of a few months (especially if you get a prescription-grade product from a dermatologist). You’ll need to apply it at night, since it can be rendered useless by the sun, and also since it makes your skin more sensitive to sunlight (which is easily remedied by wearing SPF daily).

3. Pimple patches: You can clear up a bad blemish overnight with the help of a targeted acne treatment like acne patches. At Cardon, we add salicylic acid to our pimple patches so that it can break down any trapped skin cells and oil inside the pimple.

4. Serums: Using a targeted serum overnight—one with nourishing ingredients like hyaluronic acid, niacinamide, or exfoliating ingredients like glycolic acid or salicylic acid—is a terrific way to maximize those products’ benefits. Apply them after washing the face and before moisturizing. The moisturizer will help trap the ingredients inside the skin, since serums sink into the skin whereas moisturizers rest atop it.

How to Optimize Your Sleeping for Better Skin

These strategies could help you wake up with better skin every day, and maintain it for years to come.

1. Stay hydrated: Getting up to pee in the middle of the night can be annoying, but if it’s not something that bothers you, we endorse drinking a small glass of water before bed. This will prevent your body from becoming dehydrated as you sleep, and means you wake up with brighter skin as well. And, if you wake up to pee halfway through your slumber, just have another glass of water at that point, which you can empty out after your alarm goes off. 

2. Use silk pillowcases: Think of how much time you spend with your face pressed against the pillow. And think of how absorbant that fabric is of all your sweat, product, oils, and so forth. A silk pillowcase will not only absorb less of this gunk, but will also be gentler on your skin so that you don't have creased fabric pushed against your forehead or eyes for 8 hours a night. In the big picture, that’s ⅓ of your life with less friction against the face.

3. Wash pillowcases weekly: No matter the pillowcase fabric you choose, be sure to wash your pillowcases every week, so as to prevent buildup of bacteria. The fewer germs you have on your face, the fewer breakouts you endure. Oh, and wash your towels weekly, too.

4. Rinse hair before bed: If you don’t shower before bed, at least go to bed with rinsed hair, to flush away any product or oil buildup, and to avoid transferring those to your skin via the pillowcase. Also, if your hair is long and rinsing it before bed is a hassle (because of how long it takes to dry), then either do this a couple hours before bed, or wear a headband or hair wrap to keep hair up and off the pillow as you rest. (And wash this thing every couple days.)

5. Sleep with a humidifier on: If the air around you is dry, then it will suck moisture out from your skin. So, in addition to shielding your skin with a moisturizer, it’s also important to pump some hydration into the air with a humidifier in order to give your skin a more nurturing environment for the next 7-8 hours.

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