Beauty sleep is often thought of as a female-focused term, but men need good quality sleep just as much as anyone else. Excess screen time, stress and poor diet and lifestyle choices can severely impact how much sleep we get – and it may be more important than you realise.
Sleep is an essential function that allows our bodies to grow, heal, and recharge. At least seven hours of good quality sleep per night is needed for correct cognitive and bodily functioning – and that goes for all genders.
But there are some serious side effects to sleep deprivation that exclusively affect men, from reduced testosterone production to issues arising from snoring. Here are three reasons why you should make getting your beauty sleep a priority as a man.
Risk of serious health problems
On top of poor cognitive function (including a lack of ability to concentrate, problem solve and reason) lack of good quality sleep can pose a risk for more serious health problems. Sleep deficiency is linked to depression, heart disease, kidney disease and high blood pressure, among others.
Men tend to naturally have narrower nasal passages than women, which makes them 2-3 times more likely to suffer from sleep apnoea. Sleep apnoea disturbs you while you sleep, as your brain will temporarily wake you up as much as 30 times a night to fix your breathing pattern. This can make it difficult to rest properly and enter the deep stages of REM sleep, which are essential for effective sleep.
There are ways to lessen the chances of snoring and reduce your symptoms if you have sleep apnoea, from reducing your alcohol consumption to maintaining a healthy body weight. If you notice you’re frequently waking up at night, it’s a good idea to book a check up with the GP.
Testosterone production and sleep are intricately linked. Poor quality sleep can reduce your testosterone levels, and having low testosterone can lead to insomnia and sleep disorders.
To keep your hormones in check, practise self-care to ensure you get a solid night’s sleep. Following a regular bedtime schedule can help you sleep better and longer, as can reducing your alcohol and caffeine intake, and switching off from screen at least an hour before bed. The blue light emitted from screens can interrupt our natural circadian rhythms, which can negatively impact our quality of sleep.
Exercising is another great way to ensure your testosterone levels stay where they should be. Strength training and high intensity interval training can raise testosterone production, but be sure to train early in the day, as working out too close to bedtime can make it harder to drift off.
Lack of sleep means that your body doesn’t have time to properly heal and repair itself, and one of the most obvious places we see the consequences is in the face. Dark circles, sullen and ashy looking skin and puffy eyes are all symptoms of sleep deprivation. For those who sleep less than 6 hours a night, you’re likely seeing the results in your skin.
To rejuvenate your complexion and regain glowing, fresh skin, head to bed an hour or two earlier than usual. Remember to follow a facial skin care routine that suits your skin (including a moisturiser) and you’ll have a healthier, happier appearance in no time.
Not just for the ladies
Although many men stray away from needing “beauty” sleep, getting enough z’s is important for everyone. Be sure to change your schedule to prioritise your sleep schedule and boost your self care routine if you are suffering from any signs of sleep deprivation.