Waking up refreshed is key. And I am Not.
Sleeping well is not so much about the hours of sleep but the benefits to come from solid sleep.
Sleeping sound is one of our best-kept beauty secrets but this past year I have found my sleeping patterns all over the place with hours and hours of insomnia a few nights per week.
So what to do? I need to get back to my routines and rituals and make sure I practice them.
* A warm and luxurious bath is the most wonderful way to relax but it is important to cool the body down before sleeping.
We sleep better if our body temperature is lower so a relax in the tub and luxuriate forever but cool down afterward with a tepid shower. Note To Self: I never do that.
* Removing makeup is a must but also a great big bore at times.
Many times I think of nothing but crawling between the sheets and letting the face stay put. Note To Self: All wrong.
The most important part of skincare maintenance before bed is cleansing; letting the day’s build-up settle overnight is probably one of the worst practices.
* Take the time to mix up skincare routines.
Apply a mask that can remain on throughout the evening or add an extra vitamin serum or hydrating cream.
Coat the cuticles, cover the body and pamper the feet; so much can soften while sleeping.
Allow a few minutes for the products to soak into the skin before laying down and settling; better on the skin than on the bedding. The ritual of preparation can go a long way towards helping sleep patterns improve.
* Leave caffeine alone after lunchtime; that does include chocolate. Note To Self: Ok say no more.
* Unplug. Fall asleep the old-fashioned way with a page-turner of a book and leave Instagram alone for the evening.
* Make sure sleepwear is not only pretty but also comfortable. Tossing and turning is a side effect of a poor night’s sleep and wearing something that doesn’t move with you does not help. I am always after a pair of white cotton pj’s, one size up – they feel the most restful to me.
* Practise relaxed breathing to lower your heart rate.
Hold your breath until the count of 7 and exhale slowly, repeat over and over.
Anxiety means shallow breathing and that speeds up our heart rate.
Anxiety is our adversary when it comes to sleeping well.
*Lower the room temperature; cool sleeping is the best sleeping.
Somewhere between 60 and 70 degrees is the zone we want to be in.
Add a blanket if needed but keep the room temperature down.
*Mattress and pillows, a personal choice, they make all the difference to sleeping well. I’ve lately been sleeping on one of those that mould to the neck and head – a true gamechanger for me.
*Soft lighting and a dedicated reading light. Harsh overhead light is overstimulating.
*If you relate better to organized and tidy, make sure the bedroom is too. Feeling shambolic does nothing to aid sleeping well.
* A few drops of lavender oil on the inside of the pillowcase smells delicious and nudges sleep.
*Silk satin pillowcases are meant to be ideal for sleeping on.
Why? Apparently, they produce less friction when we toss and turn which means fewer wrinkles.
Sleeping well for me is all about routine and ritual. I need to find it once more. xv
Sleeping Beauty: Achieving A Good Night Sleep
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