First and foremost, bad things happen when you don’t get enough sleep (see infographic).
Above all, when you get 8 hours of sleep:
- Blood flow to the skin improves. As a result, your skin looks young and healthy.
- Collagen levels increase. In fact, collagen, is a protein that promotes smooth skin and elasticity.
- Your skin texture improves
- You perspire when you sleep. Incidentally, perspiration rebalances and recovers extra moisture. So, this makes sleep a natural moisturizer that helps smooth out wrinkles on the skin.
- In the first 3 hours of sleep, the human growth hormone helps your skin repair damage that occurs every day
- In the middle two hours of sleep, melatonin levels increase. Moreover, melatonin acts as an antioxidant that helps protect your skin from damaging free radicals.
- Finally, in the last 3 hours of sleep, cortisol levels decrease. As a result, inflammation decreases. In addition, your skin gets its deepest recovery of the night.
On the other hand, when you are sleep deprived:
- Your body releases the stress hormone cortisol. Especially relevant, cortisol inhibits fibroblast function and increases matrix metalloproteinases (collagenase, gelatinase). Furthermore, matrix metalloproteinases accelerate collagen and elastin breakdown. However, both collagen and elastin are essential for skin integrity. So, when collagen breaks down, skin elasticity decreases. Also, by becoming thinner and less firm, the skin shows signs of aging. Moreover, when skin is thin, its appearance is less smooth and subtle and wrinkles become more prominent.
- The increased cortisol triggers inflammation. And, inflammation breaks down proteins in the skin that keep skin radiant and smooth. Also, inflammation can make small blemishes appear larger. In addition, inflammation causes outbreaks of acne, eczema, psoriasis, and skin allergies.
- Your skin becomes more sensitive
- Existing skin conditions like rosaea or eczema become worse
- It becomes harder to recover from skin damage caused by ultraviolet exposure
- Dark circles appear under the eyes
- Brown spots appear on your skin
- Healing and restoring of skin suffers
- Losing the first 3 hours of sleep causes you to lose the human growth hormone. As a result, skin repair, because of daily damage, does not occur. Which induces the aging process.
- You become tired. As a result the blood in your body is not flowing efficiently, which results in lack of oxygen in the blood. And, this lack of oxygen causes your skin to appear ashy, pigmented or blotchy.
- Your skin’s PH level drops. And, this drop in PH level creates skin imbalance. As a result, your skin stops producing the moisture it needs which leads to drier skin.
- Your skin looks pale and dehydrated