One of the best things we can do for our bodies and our skin is to regularly get a minimum of eight hours kip, give or take a hour depending on your personal needs. It is in deep sleep that your body rests and repairs itself. Without adequate sleep, we literally fall apart. I know I do!
– You struggle with simply daily tasks.
– Rely on caffeinated drinks or sugar to keep you going – these will inflame the skin and cause premature ageing.
– You’re forgetful, not to mention irritable!
– Tired and lethargic. Everything takes twice as long, because you just can’t get it together.
– Your skin is aged – it looks sallow and grey. You get more fine lines and dark circles. Your body releases an extra helping of the stress hormone Cortisol to help you fight through the day. Too much Cortisol breaks down collagen, which is exactly what we need to keep skin smooth and supple.
I am writing this post in in regards to my recent lack of sleep. You may have seen my latest Spell Magazine column on how I tackle the outward appearance on my sleep deprivation. You can read it here. All self inflicted I might add – working on multiple projects, toddler and busy household can do that to you. You start sitting at your desk imaging (and praying) for either an extra pair of hands or extra hours on the clock! Enough digression, so apart from trying to fake that I slept, I’m actually also trying to make sure I sleep and get some quality shut eye too.
I start by pulling away from my desk about 9.30pm for a shower to wash the day away. It surprisingly helps as it focuses me on shutting down for the night. The aim is to be in bed by 10.30pm. I use Bodhi & Birch Camomile Sky, £18 as it super calming and zen like. I don’t have a bath as the idea is I want to get to bed fairly fast. A bath will take longer and chances are I’ll fall asleep and wake up freezing judging from past experience.
Following the shower, I moisturise with a lavender and coconut oil infusion I make myself. But there are many relaxing body oils you can use. NEOM, one of my favourite candle brands do some amazing sleep encouraging oils. For Christmas this year, you can buy the gift of sleep. More on that later. I have my eye on the Real Luxury Body Oil with lavender, jasmine and rosewood. This Works have a Deep Sleep range, Aromatherapy Associates Relax range is all about getting you to a more ‘chilled’ state. These are all brands I’ve used at some point and I wouldn’t hesitate to turn back to. A fairly new outfit, Kiss the Moon have facial oils with sleep benefits.
OK, by this point, I’m super relaxed and looking forward to bed. So once, I’m in bed ensuring phones and iPads are switched off (this is really hard to do!), I apply my Vichy Idealia Skin Sleep Balm, £26.50. An intensive super night treatment that hydrates, renews, plumps and protect the skin whilst you sleep. It good to go for all skin types. With hyaluronic acid, glycyrrhizic acid and caffeine, it’s actually designed to help the skin look and feel like its had a full rest quota. I feel it works even better for your skin, if you DO get a full night’s sleep. Pleasantly it’s a gel texture (though it’s a balm) so lovely and cooling to massage into your skin before bed. It feels sticky as soon as you apply, but that feeling disappears within seconds. My skin feel comfortable hydrated and vibrant in the morning.
I’m also using 1001 Remedies Sleep Relaxing Balm, £29. It’s a pure plant oil balm formulation to help you unwind, soothe insomnia, stress less and sleep better. Amongst the ten essential oils are the powerhouses of Melissa, renowned for calming the nervous system as well as Neroli to fight stress and anxiety. The result is a deep sweet smelling balm that encourages the deepest sleep. It’s heady and does help to knock you out, so even if you don’t get a full eight hours sleep, what you do get will be quality sleep.
I also dump my thoughts in the notebook on my night stand, sometimes light a candle Feuille de Lavande from Diptyque is a night time favourite and read a life affirming magazine – Psychologies, Marie Claire, Sunday Times Magazines, staying away from anything stimulating like fashion and oddly beauty!
This is how I do it, over to you….any tips would be much appreciated.