Anti-aging pillows and other bedtime stories

Can pillows and sheets turn back time? Here’s what we know.

Nicole Hangsterfer Avatar

Nicole Hangsterfer, PA-C
Aug 04, 2020 · 3 min read

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We’re here to share what we know — but don’t take it as medical advice. Talk to your medical provider if you have questions.

It’s a no-brainer that the right nighttime skincare routine can make a big difference in your skin, but what about your actual sleep habits? While one sleepless night might not have long-lasting effects on your overall health, consistently good sleep can help improve your skin — it’s called beauty rest for a reason! But if you’ve heard about bedtime accessories like sleep wrinkle pillows, you might wonder if your routine alone is enough. So is it worth it to put in extra work before you drift off to sleep? Here’s what I’ve learned as one of Curology’s in-house medical providers.

Silk pillowcases

I’ll cut to the chase: there’s no medical evidence that sleeping on silk helps prevent wrinkles. In fact, wrinkles are more often influenced by your sleep position. More on that later! That said? Silk might indirectly help your breakouts.

Basically, sweaty synthetic fabrics may lead to breakouts, so natural fabrics (like silk or cotton) tend to be a better choice. Why? Bacteria — including bacteria that may contribute to acne — thrive in a moist environment. So if your pillowcase is covered with oil and sweat, it might aggravate a breakout. Decreasing oil and sweat on your pillowcase may help reduce the potential for acne breakouts.

To be clear: there’s no scientific evidence to support claims that silk pillowcases reduce acne or aid in anti-aging. I’m just saying your fabric-of-choice might make a difference!

Clean sheets

Given what we suspect about sweaty pillowcases and breakouts, you might think to change your sheets more often. In theory, bed coverings with a layer of sweat, oil, and product residue from your face and hair could possibly contribute to breakouts.

But how often should you change your sheets? Once a week may be helpful, and even more often if you are a sweaty sleeper. You might want to change your pillowcases even more often. Every other day works for some people who flip their pillows, and others put a clean T-shirt over their pillows every night.

Sleep position

Among other things, wrinkles can be influenced by your sleep position: pressure from your face, neck, and chest squishing into the pillow and bed may contribute to unwanted “sleep wrinkles” over time. So, instead of sleeping on your stomach, try sleeping on your back!

But like I said earlier, getting a good’s night sleep is also really important — not just for your skin, but also for your overall health. So if you just can’t get comfy sleeping on your back, do what you need to get the rest you need!

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While these sleep habits might help your skin, using the right skincare products and practicing proper sun protection will make the biggest difference. In my opinion, the best night cream is one that’s customized to fit your needs — that’s where Curology comes in. When you sign up for a free month of Curology, an in-house medical provider (like me) can prescribe you a custom cream with a mix of 3 active ingredients, chosen to treat skin concerns like acne, hyperpigmentation, and fine lines. Just apply it to clean, dry skin and let it work its magic while you dream. You can try our other skincare products for free, too — you’ll just pay $4.95 (plus tax) to cover shipping/handling on your first box. After that, pick the plan and products that work best for you.

Nicole Hangsterfer Avatar

Nicole Hangsterfer, PA-C

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