The six things you're doing in your sleep that could be damaging your skin.


It’s common knowledge that getting enough sleep is crucial for good health. Experts recommend at least six to eight hours every night in order to give your body enough time to recover from the stress of everyday life.

Getting a good night’s sleep is also one of the best beauty secrets, as poor sleep often results in dark under-eye circles and dehydrated skin. But even though cellular renewal is going into overdrive while you’re fast asleep, you’ll only wake up with a flawless complexion if you stop making these rookie errors…

1. Sleeping on a dirty pillowcase.

You might think washing your sheets once a month is enough, especially if you shower before bed every night, but bodies exude a mixture of sweat, oil and dead skin cells all the time, and especially during sleep. Combined with makeup or skincare residue and dust mites, your pillowcase is dirtier than you think. Wash your sheets at least once a week to prevent bacteria from causing acne.

For more tips on improving your skin while you snooze, check out this helpful video below. Post continues after video.


2. Sleeping on your side.

This is a tricky one, as a lot of women are most comfortable sleeping on their side. The problem with having half your face buried deep into a pillow is that the friction stretches your skin, leaving deep creases on your face in the morning. The older you get, the harder it is for your skin to bounce back, giving creases the chance to turn into wrinkles. The best way to prevent this is to sleep on your back. If that’s too uncomfortable, a silk pillowcase is a good alternative, as it will lessen friction.

3. Sleeping with your makeup on.

Yes, we know you were too tired (and lazy) to remove your makeup after that party last weekend, but no, that isn’t a valid excuse for going to sleep wearing layers of pore-clogging foundation. Makeup creates a barrier for skin regeneration; in other words, if dead skin cells can’t flake off, they’ll cause congestion and nasty zits – not to mention a mess on your pillowcase (see the first point). Sleeping makeup-free is the only way to go.

4. Wearing your hair down.

If you wear your hair down during the night, the natural oils in your hair and residue from hair products can cause breakouts on your face, as they clog pores – just like makeup does. Sleeping with your hair up in a loose bun is best for both your skin, and your hair.

The Mamamia Out Loud team discuss the terrifying frequency at which science says we are MEANT to be washing our pillow cases. Post continues below…


5. Using the wrong skincare products.

Ever wondered why there are day creams and night creams? It’s not a marketing gimmick – your skin has different needs during the night. Apply a night cream that is deeply nourishing before you go to sleep to prevent your skin from drying out. In contrast to day creams (which focus on UV protection), night creams contain more active anti-ageing ingredients, such as retinol and hyaluronic acid, to support your skin’s regeneration process.

6. Having a drink before you go to bed.

A glass of wine before bed every now and then won’t kill you, but if you’ve made it your bedtime routine to have a drink because it makes you fall asleep easier, you might want to change that. Alcohol will reduce your REM (deep sleep) cycle and can therefore make you feel groggy in the morning, even if you’ve slept a full eight hours. Furthermore, alcohol dehydrates your body and, consequently, your skin. You’re better off opting for a cup of calming chamomile at night.

This post originally appeared on and was republished here with full permission.

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