The 9 Things Women with Good Skin Are Doing
Hint: One of them has to do with an alarm clock
Ah, sleep. It’s the difference between a bright day full of sunshine and peonies…and scaring the barista at Starbucks. You already know it’s a major factor in keeping yourself healthy, but perhaps you’re like us and didn’t realize that sleep is also a major factor in healthy-looking skin.
Turns out, when you skip a solid eight hours of shut-eye, your skin’s surface layer has a harder time recovering from the daily damage it endures. Luckily, we’ve rounded up nine tips that’ll help you get the rest you need and wake up feeling like you can finally (maybe) forgo the under-eye concealer.
1. Stay on a Schedule
By training your body to fall asleep and wake up at certain times, you’ll train yourself to feel tired at a reasonable bedtime (and not at 1 a.m.). This will save you from struggling to fallasleep and feeling exhausted in the morning. Pro tip: Keep up this schedule on the weekendstoo. It’s tough, but it’s the best way to form a good habit.
2. Discover The Optimal Time to Zzzz
Turn to sleepyti.me, a website that suggests an ideal bedtime based on when you need to wake up. (Turns out, more sleep isn’t always better.) The trick is to arise between REM cycles, not in the middle of one, which is a recipe for grogginess. For example, if you normally get up for work at 7 a.m., try to conk out around 10 p.m., 11:30 p.m…or 1 a.m. Who knew?
3. Eat Sleepy Foods for Dinner
You already know that you should quit drinking caffeine by noon (it stays in your system for eight to 14 hours). But did you know that the foods you eat for dinner can also affect your sleep schedule? Try to consume items containing sleep-promoting nutrients like tryptophan, melatonin and magnesium. For example, quinoa mixed with sautéed greens, sliced chicken breast and roasted pumpkin seeds. Then, for dessert, opt for a cherry frozen yogurt (cherries are a natural source of melatonin) instead of your usual Rocky Road.
4. Prepare for Rejuvenation
Ladies, your nightly skincare regimen is more important than you might think. To kick-start your beauty rest, reach for Estée Lauder’s #1 cult-favorite Advanced Night Repair serum. The iconic little brown bottle works in sync with your skin's own overnight renewal process to help repair the visible signs of aging. A few drops under your moisturizer before bed and you’ll wake up feeling more radiant in no time.
5. Pay Attention to Your Pillow
You buy sneakers and sports bras according to your body’s needs, so why settle on a one-size-fits-all pillow? Bedgear pillows and accessories are uniquely designed to fit different sleep positions (stomach sleepers, side sleepers, etc.), ensuring you’ll get the most restorative night possible. They even have a Pillow ID feature that lets you create your perfect fit (we’re using the Twilight Performance Pillow--thanks for asking).
6. Chill Out
In both senses of the phrase. Obviously, you should be relaxed before bed, but it also helps to sleep in a room that’s between 60 and 65 degrees. Because your body cools down as you sleep, a lower room temperature aids in the natural cooling process, improving the quality of your sleep. Worried you’ll wake up to a freezing-cold home? That’s what the Nest thermostat is for. It learns your daily habits and adjusts your home’s temperature accordingly.
7. Switch Off Your Phone
Save the Instagram scrolling for the morning (is it just us or does it immediately make you feel more awake?) and inflict a self-imposed technology ban for at least 60 minutes beforebedtime. All electronic devices (yes, e-readers count) emit blue light--aka the anti-melatonin. Instead, pick up a paper copy of that book you’ve been dying to read or program your TV toturn off at a certain time.
8. Practice the 4-7-8 Technique
Introducing one of the best tricks to relaxing before bed. In the 4-7-8 technique, you breathe to the counts of four, seven and eight--which for some reason acts as a natural tranquilizer for the body. First, you exhale audibly and completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound. Then you inhale for a mental count of four. Hold that for a count of seven before exhaling through your mouth for a count of eight. Repeat three times or until you find a rhythm.
9. OK, If All Else Fails...
This tip comes straight from Beautyrest (yep, the mattress company). What to do: Close your eyes and try to visualize the details of your childhood home. Walk the hallways. Go in and out of every room. Picture the Laura Ashley comforter you had for a decade. The next thing you know, the sun is streaming in and, hallelujah, you just logged a solid six hours of sleep. Why this works? Distraction. For every minute you’re focused on visualizing your home, it’s one less minute you’re stressing about what happened at work that day.