What are sleep wrinkles?
19th May 2015
Sleep wrinkles are ridges or creases in the facial skin caused by distortion of the face during sleep. When the delicate skin on your face is in contact with a pillow overnight, it can cause compression which results in facial skin creases. Each night as you sleep, these wrinkles are reinforced, especially as we all tend to sleep in the same position.
To avoid sleep wrinkles, try to minimise the contact between your face and any surface such as a pillow or mattress during the night. This usually means trying to sleep on your back, even though it’s hard to get into the habit if it isn't your natural sleeping position. Some people swear by using an anti-wrinkle pillow or a pillow slip made out of silk fibres. Silk is considered a good material for pillow covers as it is less drying than other fabrics (e.g. cotton) and is said to help prevent wrinkles. Anti-wrinkle pillows are also available and claim to reduce skin compression and support air circulation, causing slower skin ageing and wrinkling.
The other kind of wrinkling that affects your skin is known as expression wrinkles, also known as laughter lines or crows' feet. Expression wrinkles are caused when you move your face to express emotions such as smiling, frowning or laughing. Activities like smoking can cause wrinkling of the mouth due to frequently compressing this area when drawing on a cigarette.
You can help slow the development of wrinkles with a good healthy diet that promotes skin elasticity, as well as avoiding sun damage and smoking. You may notice wrinkling more if your skin is dehydrated, so try and drink plenty of water.
After a certain age, it’s no longer a matter of avoiding wrinkles but figuring out how best to adapt to your skin. Softening the appearance of aging can be a blessing to many who don’t want to look much younger, but instead keep a healthy, age-appropriate glow. A dermatologist will have the expertise to advise you on the best plan for your individual needs and wants.