Ashleigh Sharman discovers how to help clients say good night to sleep-deprived skin.
When was the last time you had a great night’s sleep, waking completely refreshed and relaxed? Chances are you probably can’t remember, and the same goes for your clients.
The problem is that this lack of sleep, a time when many internal body functions such as DNA repair, cellular detox and cellular production get into gear, is turning up on the face and working against the effort put toward client concerns – a problem all too well known by The International Dermal Institute.
“The body uses sleep time for internal housekeeping,” explains Annet King, Director of Global Education Dermalogica and The International Dermal Institute.
“This is when we process nutrients, detoxify, renew and recharge, so giving your body ample time to accomplish all this is critical for keeping your skin – not to mention your overall health – in peak condition.”
This accelerates the skin ageing process and, as Annet says “If your body is chronically deprived of sleep, the effects become physically and visibly noticeable.”
Lack of sleep can cause blood vessels to dilate, resulting in the look of dark circles; it can lead to puffy eyes, sallow skin and fine lines.
A sleep-deprived state not only wreaks havoc on the body’s hydration balance but can also elevate levels of the stress hormone cortisol, creating an inflamed state within the body and worsening any conditions you may be treating clients for (including acne, rosacea, psoriasis and sensitivity).
These inflammatory cells increase the breakdown of collagen and hyaluronic acid and, if there is a barrier to important deep sleep, then growth hormones can’t get on with repairing damaged cells. Sounds terrifying.
However, it’s important to note that different people need different amounts of sleep, with The Sleep Health Foundation stating between seven and eight and a quarter hours is the average for adults. Some can cope very well with much less and some need much more every night.
Simply put, while we sleep, blood flood increases to the skin which tunes into repair mode. If we want to deliver the best skin results for clients then it’s important to help them maximise this recovery time.
The Sleep Health Foundation’s 10 tips for a good night’s sleep:
- Have a regular sleep pattern
- Spend the right amount of time in bed
- Bed is for sleeping, not entertainment
- Wind down and relax before bed – yoga, meditation or breathing exercises
- Make sure your bedroom is comfortable
- Alcohol, cigarettes and caffeine – to be avoided, ideally altogether, but at least a number of hours
- Avoid daytime naps
- Don’t lie awake watching the clock
- Avoid sleeping pills except in extreme circumstances
- You may need professional help to improve the length and quality of your sleep.