The Surprising Ways Sleep Affects Your Skin & Overall Appearance

The Surprising Ways Sleep Affects Your Skin & Overall Appearance


Do you stand in front of the mirror in the mornings and wonder, “What’s happening to my skin?” If so, understanding the intricate relationship between sleep and skin health can unlock new ways to enhance both your wellness and appearance. This article delves into how sleep contributes significantly to healthy skin function and, on the flipside, how certain skin conditions can impact our quality of rest.

We will explore the effects of chronic sleep deprivation on our skin, including premature aging and worsening of preexisting dermal disorders. We’ll also discuss nighttime itching, a common phenomenon that not only disrupts good sleep but also takes a toll on mental well-being.

Furthermore, we’ll examine how co-sleeping might introduce more allergens or irritants that could exacerbate symptoms in individuals with sensitive skin. Finally, this post will highlight the importance of addressing sleep quality when managing chronic skin conditions and provide practical tips for improving slumber while effectively dealing with dermatological issues.

Join us as we consider six surprising links between sleep quality and the health of your skin!   

The Connection Between Beauty Sleep & Skin Health 

Have you ever wondered why your skin looks “meh” after a night of tossing and turning, and more radiant after a deep slumber? It turns out that sleep plays a major role in overall skin health. Recent studies prove that not getting enough shut-eye can make a visible difference to the appearance and vibrancy of your skin, as well as worsen preexisting skin conditions.  

1. Sleep Deprivation Messes With Cell Repair & Hormone Production

During sleep, the skin undergoes a process of cellular repair. Insufficient rest means that your skin is missing out on its natural nightly rejuvenation process. As a result, skimping on sleep can lead to inflammation, causing pesky conditions like psoriasis and eczema to flare up. 

Sleep deprivation also disrupts your body’s hormone production, causing overproduction of cortisol (aka the stress hormone). Research shows that excess cortisol contributes to more breakouts.  

Hormones also affect the body’s production of collagen. A decrease in collagen speeds up the aging process, stealing your youthful glow. 

2. Poor Sleep Aggravates Existing Skin Conditions

Studies have found a strong connection between poor sleep and worsening skin conditions. One study published in Clinical Experimental Dermatology showed that people with lousy sleep quality suffered from itchier and scalier psoriasis flare-ups compared to those who slept the recommended amount.

3. Sleeplessness Exacerbates Nighttime Itching

Your body’s circadian rhythm, or internal clock, messes with your skin’s functions like temperature regulation and barrier protection. At night, these changes can make itching even more unbearable. Plus, while you’re snoozing, your body releases more pro-inflammatory cytokines that amp up the itchiness.

A study has also revealed the correlation between disturbed sleep caused by intense itching and heightened stress levels, leading to anxiety issues in individuals suffering from chronic skin diseases such as eczema or psoriasis.

4. Skin Issues Disrupt Your Beauty Sleep: The Vicious Cycle of Sleep Deprivation & Skin Woes

It’s not just that skin issues mess with your sleep – lack of sleep messes with your skin, too! Pesky skin conditions can turn your peaceful slumber into a nightmare, creating a vicious cycle where lack of sleep worsens symptoms, and symptoms disrupt your sleep even more.

Eczema, psoriasis, acne – these troublemakers can all ruin your beauty sleep. These skin issues can be extremely annoying and disruptive to a good night’s sleep. If you have eczema, you know the struggle of battling the urge to scratch all night long.

But it’s not just physical discomfort that these conditions bring. They also mess with your emotions, causing anxiety and depression. And that makes it even harder to catch some quality shut-eye! 

  • REM Sleep Deprivation: Your body produces cytokines during REM sleep, which help regulate inflammation. So, when you miss out on this stage, your skin suffers.
  • Stress On The Rise: Not getting enough sleep increases stress hormone cortisol, leading to more inflammation and pesky flare-ups of acne. 

This vicious cycle shows just how crucial it is to prioritize your beauty sleep when dealing with persistent skin issues. Treat the condition, take care of your mental health, and reclaim your peaceful slumber.

5. Co-Sleeping Can Contribute To Skin Conditions

Sharing a bed can be cozy, but may aggravate certain skin conditions by introducing allergens and irritants into your sleep sanctuary.

When you cuddle up with another person, it’s not just their affection that you’re embracing—it’s also any allergens they may be carrying. Dust mites, pet dander, and even their skincare products can wreak havoc on sensitive skin. 

The friction caused by from sharing blankets and sheets can also irritate your skin, causing eczema and psoriasis flare-ups. 

If your partner snores or tosses and turns all night, waking you up, co-sleeping can also sabotage your beauty sleep.  

6. Both Sleep Quality & Skin Disorders Can Impact Mental Health

Dealing with chronic skin conditions often negatively impacts self-image and mental well-being, contributing to anxiety and depression. These mental health conditions are worsened by both your sleep quality and the severity of your skin symptoms. Stress levels have also been found to be closely tied to flare-ups in conditions like acne or rosacea, so managing stress is crucial for overall skin health. 

To address the mental impact of both poor sleep and skin disorders, consider trying mindfulness meditation to reduce stress levels over time, or consider seeking therapy to manage persistent negative thoughts related to your skin condition. 

Focusing on improving both the amount of sleep that you’re getting and the quality of your sleep is essential when dealing with chronic skin conditions and/or struggling with your mental health. 

The Power of Restful Sleep: Tips For Getting Better Sleep & Managing Skin Disorders 

In contrast to inadequate sleep, which may aggravate the situation and impede healing, consistent and restful sleep can reduce inflammation, a major trigger for skin conditions like psoriasis or eczema. Having a sound slumber is critical for general well-being, particularly when managing persistent skin issues. 

Here are some practical tips to improve your sleep and overall skin health:

Adopt Consistent Sleep Habits

  • Stick to a Regular Bedtime: Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, even on weekends.
  • Create a calming pre-sleep routine: Whether it’s reading a book, meditating, or taking a warm bath, find activities that signal to your brain that it’s time to wind down and prepare for a good night’s sleep.
  • Avoid Screens Before Bed: The blue light from electronic devices can disrupt your sleep cycle.
  • Create a Relaxing Environment: Use room-darkening shades, earplugs, or a fan to create a peaceful atmosphere.
  • Eat Lightly at Night: Late-night eating can worsen skin issues like acne.

Combine Rest With Skincare

  • Cleanse Before Bed: Remove dirt and makeup to prevent breakouts.
  • Maintain Hydration: Apply moisturizer before sleep to keep your skin hydrated.
  • Choose hypoallergenic bedding: Don’t let your bed become an allergen battleground. Opt for hypoallergenic materials to minimize the chances of triggering flare-ups while you snooze. 

By following these habits, you can improve your sleep quality and better manage chronic skin conditions.  


Quality sleep and skin health go hand in hand. Lack of sleep can mess up your skin, while chronic skin issues can keep you tossing and turning!

To manage skin problems and get better sleep, focus on good sleep hygiene and develop a solid skincare routine that works for you. 

Tackle the physical and psychological aspects of skin issues, and you’ll be on your way to better sleep and healthy, beautiful skin!


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