Sleep your way to better skin

We all know how important a good night’s rest is. Sleep is our body’s downtime to repair itself, so not only is it crucial for our physical and mental wellbeing, it’s also the best beauty treatment we can pamper our skin with. As we slumber, our skin works to renew and restore itself from the day’s wear and tear. Get enough sleep and you’ll wake up looking younger, fresher, and more radiant, but miss out on your recommended seven to eight hours a night and you’ll end up with a nightmare situation: dull skin, puffy eyes, dark circles, acne, and premature wrinkles. After all, they don’t call it beauty sleep for nothing!

But while we all know sleep is great and we all definitely want more of it, sometimes our stress-filled lives can make falling and staying asleep difficult, even when we get to bed on time. Besides avoiding caffeine (doctors recommend only non-caffeinated beverages for the eight hours before bed), here are some tricks you can try to help you snooze as soundly as Sleeping Beauty.

SET A SLEEP ROUTINE
The body loves rituals, so establishing a routine is often the best way to make sure you have a deep, fulfilling night’s rest. Go to bed at a fixed time every night and set the alarm for the same time each day – even on weekends – to develop a regular sleep-wake rhythm. For the most restorative sleep, try to get to bed by 10pm every night; according to sleep experts, the ideal time in our natural biorhythm for the body to rest and heal is between 10pm and 2am.


SLEEP IN A COOL, DARK ROOM
A room that’s too warm doesn’t send your brain the right signal to fall into deep sleep. According to the experts, the temperature most conducive to snoozing is between 18 to 21 degrees Celsius. Additionally, the glow from electronic devices can produce a fair amount of light which can be a serious disturbance to melatonin levels, the hormone that helps you fall, and stay, asleep. For the best slumber, keep your room as dark as possible.

AVOID ALCOHOL AND SMOKING
For a restful night’s sleep, stay away from alcohol. Drinking may initially help you drift off into dreamland, but it’ll reduce your quality of sleep. Avoid smoking too, as studies have shown that smokers have a higher level of brain activity during sleep than non-smokers, leaving them feeling less rested in the morning.

DON’T EAT A BIG MEAL TOO LATE IN THE DAY
Eating a heavy meal too close to bedtime will send your blood sugar level soaring, which can cause melatonin levels in your body to drop, making it harder to fall asleep. Your last meal should be the lightest of the day and should be eaten at least three hours before you head to bed.

POWER DOWN YOUR MIND
Refrain from doing stimulating activities for at least an hour before bedtime. Engaging tasks like watching TV, talking on the phone, and working can cause your mind to stay active for longer, even while you sleep. Instead, take a warm bath, meditate, or have a calming cup of decaffeinated tea to relax. Diffusing soothing scents like Poetree’s Rainforest or Ode to Hope home fragrances in your bedroom can even help to unwind you for the night.

EXERCISE LATE IN THE DAY, BUT NOT TOO NEAR BEDTIME
When it comes to sleep, exercise will make it easier for your mind and body to wind down at night. Even doing simple yoga stretches can be effective in helping you relax. However, avoid exercising two to three hours before bedtime, as the mental and physical stimulation can leave you feeling wired and make it hard to calm down to sleep.

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