The art of getting a good night's sleep
A third of people complain about lack of sleep. Based on the fact that most adults need around 8 hours of shut eye, statistics show that most people do not get sufficient sleep and are under-sleeping by roughly an hour every night, losing a whole night's sleep over the course of a week! Welcome to the Matchstick Eyes Syndrome! The good news is that you only need to make a few, simple lifestyle changes in order get your required beauty sleep.
1. Avoid stress
Stress is sleep's Arch Enemy No.1, so it's time to find your inner Zen. Which is easier said than done! First and foremost, you need 'me time' - a moment when you can switch off from the world and just chill out. Settle down with a book, laze in a bath, enjoy a quiet cuppa, listen to some (relaxing!) music, treat yourselves to a face mask. If your bodies are relaxed, it's easier for you to fall asleep. The quicker you fall asleep, the better the quality!
2. Have a nighttime routine
Kids follow a set routine (bath, dinner, bedtime story etc.) and so should you. Whether it's a calming herbal tea, a quick read, a pampering cleansing session, a lazy shower/bath, keeping to the same sleep routine is essential. Use this time to also adopt a nighttime skincare routine that will help your skin heal and regenerate while you get your beauty sleep. Use the L’Oréal Paris Revitalift Moisturising Night Cream to reduce fine lines and wrinkles, boost skin firmness, youthfulness, and radiance, and enhance the skin regeneration process overnight. Repeating this nighttime routine every evening sends a signal to your brain. It understands that you're getting ready to settle down for the night and goes into sleep mode.
3. Stick to a schedule
Try your best to keep the same schedule: hit the sack at the same time every night and, most importantly, get up at the same time each morning. By sticking to this sleep routine, it's both easier to nod off and to wake up. Obviously, weekends can be a bit tricky! Even so, don't force yourself to stay awake and learn to recognise the signs that your body needs to rest - sore eyes, yawning, heavy eyelids and other ways that your bodies react when it's had enough for the day.
4. Watch what you eat
What you eat has a huge impact on the quality of your sleep. Adopt a diet rich in rice, green veggies and fish, making sure that you get plenty of magnesium during the day. Eat light meals in the evening and avoid sugar and booze. Nighttime indigestion sucks, so try to eat your dinner at least 3 hours before you go to bed. And avoid any stimulants after 5pm - coffee, alcohol, tea, cigarettes, as they can prevent us from falling asleep and wake us up during the night.
5. Exercise regularly
Regular exercise has numerous benefits, one of which is to promote restful nights. Sports help you get rid of daily stress and boost your serotonin levels. This powerful neurotransmitter is your body's natural mood stabiliser. So pop on your trainers and go for a 20 minute jog, find your inner peace with a yoga session or dig out your favourite heels and enjoy a salsa class. Don't, however, overdo it or you'll end up feeling wired. A short session, 3 hours before bed time, is all it takes.
6. Reduce screen time
Dozing in front of the telly or Netflix, texting at all hours, constantly checking Facebook -the blue light produced by digital screens is a sleep-killer. It wreaks havoc with your melatonin, the hormone that controls your sleep cycles. So three hours before bed begin to turn down the brightness of your screen and, finally, switch it off. And keep it switched off until the next morning!
7. Set the mood right
To get a good night's sleep it's important that your bedrooms are well-aired, quiet and not too hot. Plus a decent mattress is essential if you don't want to toss and turn all night. Your tip? Invest in a mattress that's neither too hard nor too soft and keep your bed linen fresh. Finally, opt for soft lighting. It'll turn your bedroom into a sleep-inducing, dreamy nest.