Can lack of sleep age you faster?

Lack of sleep and your skin

We all know that lack of sleep can affect your general health such as obesity, diabetes and other more serious illnesses. A study has recently shown that sleep deprived women show signs of premature skin ageing and a decrease in their skin’s ability to recover after UV exposure!

The study looked at the effects of poor sleep on skin health and ageing.

Thirty poor sleeping women who generally only slept five hours or less per night, were compared to thirty good sleepers. Researchers looked for things like:

  1. How attractive they felt. (their thoughts on hanging eyelids/red eyes/pale skin, wrinkle appearance).
  2. Appearance of dark circles around the eyes.
  3. Skin barrier function and water loss.
  4. Redness and irritation.
results showed that good sleepers had significantly lower skin ageing scores!

Poor sleepers had significantly higher levels of water loss and a sense of dehydration, which indicates unhealthy skin conditions.

Good sleepers had a 30% greater skin barrier function recovery.

At 24 hours exposure to UV light, the good sleepers had significantly better recovery from redness. They also reported a significantly better self-analysis of their appearance and attractiveness compared with poor sleepers.

The study highlighted that chronic poor sleep quality is associated with increased signs of intrinsic ageing such as lower skin barrier function. It also highlighted that participants had a lower satisfaction rate with their appearance.

However subjective evidence can suggest that some wrinkles appear slightly smoother after a good night’s sleep. It would be interesting to measure the effects of good sleep versus poor sleep using skin topography (mapping) techniques.

No doubt, the topic will be explored in more detail as anti-ageing becomes even more popular than it is now!

Time to get some good quality sleep!

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