We don’t know exactly when sleep became a luxury, but we know it has. Eight hours a day is a wealth. Nine? Indulgence. For many women, when we’re put under stress our sleep quality is the first thing to go. Which is odd, but that’s when we need our brains more than ever to function at our best.
For many of us, it’s a constant struggle to carve out enough hours for sleep at night. That’s where napping comes in as an important supplement to your nighttime sleep.
Now before our highly driven, be-productive society tells you otherwise, you should know that in terms of overall health, productivity, and pleasure, napping wins all the way. Napping has been linked to great men (think Da Vinci and Einstein) and great successes (think Nike and Google.) It’s also one of the best (free!) things you can do for more youthful, beautiful skin.
Doctors tell us that a nap of just 20 to 30 minutes is enough for our minds to get some of that coveted Stage 2-type sleep that improves our concentration, motor skills and memory. In other words, we digest what’s just come, and hit the brain’s reset button so we’re ready for what’s ahead.
Of course, before we can enjoy the benefits napping brings we have to give ourselves permission to nap. Naps are good for you. So don’t feel ashamed about approaching naptime with the same dedication your bring to your desk. Embrace napping as an lovely investment in yourself.
How to nap like a pro
To build your own naptime ritual, try this:
- Pick a time between 1pm and 3pm, when energy is low. These hours are the best for napping that won’t affect your nighttime sleep.
- Remove restrictions — tight buns, bras or jewelry – and put gadgets and distractions away.
- Set up a soothing environment, by controlling sound, temperature, and most of all, light.
- Give your body a cue to relax. It may be deep breathing, a certain soundtrack, or a spritz of calming scent, such as lavender.
- Tell your mind that you are now going to sleep, and will wake up refreshed and alert at a specific time. Drift off.
The more you nap the more you can play with and perfect your ritual. Try adding plants such as rosemary or jasmine to your sleeping area. Invest in a snail pillow, nice sheets or comfortable earplugs to improve your sleep quality. Even hanging a hammock in a quiet corner can be enough to help you catch those much-needed Z’s. Add a nourishing face mask to give your skin a power nap and really wake up looking your best.
Beauty benefits of sleep
The nice thing about napping is that while you sleep, you’re actually getting lots done. It’s true! Slumber is a potent beauty treatment. Add one or two more hours of sleep to your day, and in just a few weeks people will be commenting on how well you look.
While you sleep, your skin replenishes and makes new collagen, so you end up with fewer wrinkles. More blood flows to the cells in your face, which makes for a better complexion. If you use any nutrient-rich serums, they’ll absorb better while you sleep. Tired eyes, tense facial muscles, puffiness – all these can be treated with a little well-earned rest.
At Honolulu Med Spa, sleep is one of our first recommendations for patients who’ve had a major treatment, because we know how powerful rest can be when it comes to restoration, healing and overall appearance. Even if you haven’t had a treatment recently, getting plenty of rest will always help your skin repair itself and help you look your best.
Visit our Hawaii med spa to find out more about your best skincare options and get a personalized treatment plan for 2017.