Tips for Teen Skincare: Sleep and Your Skin
Sleep and skin
Did you know that there is a strong connection between your sleep patterns and your skin health? Your entire body, including your skin, depends on a restful night of sleep to function at its best. Adequate sleep keeps your hormone levels, metabolism, and energy levels steady...and this translates to healthy, glowing skin!
Your Skin's Circadian Rhythm
Just like the rest of your body, your skin actually has a circadian rhythm! During the day, your skin is quite active in protecting your body from the surrounding environment. Your skin is in constant communication with the outside world, gathering information on everything from temperature to humidity to pollens and grasses to pollution...and everything in between! This "discussion" between your skin and the rest of the world plays an important role in the health of your immune system and the regulation of your body's functions.
At night, your skin is in a "rest and recover" phase, repairing and healing itself from all of the excitement of the day. Overnight is when your skin proliferates as it regenerates and renews itself.
To read more about your skin's circadian rhythm, check out this article.
Sleep and stress connection
Sleep quality and amount significantly alters the microbiome and the HPA axis. Inadequate sleep causes extra stress on the body and this suppresses the HPA axis. The HPA axis plays an important role in regulating the skin barrier and inflammation in the skin.
Chronic poor sleep leads to increased loss of water from the skin, and this results in a weakened skin barrier. Why should you care about your skin barrier? Your skin barrier plays a role in many skin conditions including acne, eczema, and sensitive skin. When your barrier is weak, your skin microbiome gets out of balance and your skin becomes more inflamed. This inflammation exacerbates acne and eczema. On the other hand, a strong skin barrier keeps all of the components of your skin in harmony, allowing your skin to remain resilient in the face of external stressors. Studies have shown that getting adequate sleep helps with wound healing and more efficient skin recovery.
Nighttime Routines for Teens
- Develop a evening ritual that ends your day in a positive way. This might include going for a walk, talking with a friend or family member, practicing yoga, meditating, or spending time with your pet
- Turn off electronics (phones, computers, iPads, TVs) 1 hour prior to going to bed
- Use your nighttime skincare routine as an opportunity for affirmation; recognize this important step in taking care of YOU. You are investing in your health and wellness.
- Take a moment to reflect on your day: this might include journaling or just practicing gratitude
- Spend some time planning your next day: what is your schedule? What are your goals?
- Read a good book or article
- Lights out, and make sure your room is as dark as possible. Dark rooms (and eliminating any electronics or LED lights) promote a restful and sound night of sleep.
Dermatologist-Recommend Evening Skincare
Whether you've just started a new job as a twenty-something, are studying for finals in college, or are juggling a busy schedule of sports/school as a high-schooler, taking time to care for your skin each day will pay off in dividends.
Your evening skincare routine should include a few simple steps:
Remember that simple, consistent, daily habits to care for your skin result in healthy skin that performs and glows!