We all know what beauty sleep is, or at least have a vague idea of the concept. I’ll be the first to admit I know what the opposite of beauty sleep looks like (think puffy-bruised panda eyes and a perpetual dazed expression). And while a few dabs of concealer go a long way toward covering up the problem, they aren’t really fixing the underlying issue.
“Lack of sleep is associated with a variety of health problems” says Dr. Vish Banthia, founder of Zendy Beauty—an online resource that pulls reasonable prices for procedures from acne scar treatment to Botox. These problems range from insulin resistance to weight gain to poor concentration (in college speak, the inevitable freshman 15 and unintentional mid-class nap. And yes, I’m quite familiar with both).
Then there’s the inevitable damage you’re wreaking on your skin. “Skin is the largest organ of the body,” he explains, “Just as all organs require good blood flow, so too does your skin. Blood flow is increased during sleep and this helps nourish your skin with vital ingredients.” Since we can’t all pull 8-hour nights on a regular basis, the next best thing to getting more sleep is maximizing the time you have, at least when it comes to your complexion.
“We know that those who have poor sleep habits often awake with dark circles under their eyes or puffy eye bags,” says Dr. Banthia. To combat tired skin, follow his 3 R’s: replenish, repair, and renew. Slather on that nightly moisturizer, look for collagen-heavy creams to promote the buildup of connective tissues, and try microderm and chemical peels (or IPL treatments, for the hardcore) to encourage faster cell turnover. “You can do microderm every 2-3 months,” he says, “It’s like a massage for the skin.” Peels can be done with the same frequency as microderm, while IPL treatments are “usually 4 sessions spaced apart 6-8 weeks.”
As for effective formulations, he advises the following: “Retinol, vitamins C&E, hyaluronic acid, and peptides are good ingredients to seek out for evening care.”
And with that, I bid you a semi-reasonable 1:30 am goodnight. Time to slather on those miracle workers.