Whether you struggle to fall asleep or are just looking for ways to take your sleep quality up a notch, wearing an eye mask to bed may help. Eye masks are much more than a stylish accessory—they can actually be used to encourage our bodies to relax and have even been shown to improve our skin. If you’re curious about sleeping with an eye mask but aren’t entirely convinced, here are some of the health and beauty benefits they can provide.
Increased Sleep Quantity & Quality
Wearing an eye mask to bed can increase rapid eye movement, or REM, sleep, the stage associated with dreaming that typically accounts for 20-25% of our total sleep time. By blocking out light, the mask helps prevent any external interruptions, promoting deeper and longer REM sleep cycles. This can lead to improved memory, mood, and overall cognitive performance.
Sleeping with an eye mask can prevent skin barrier damage and reduce puffiness in the delicate area around your eyes. By acting as a protective layer, the mask reduces friction between your skin and pillowcase, while the gentle pressure it exerts can help to drain excess fluid from the eye area.
Improved Mental Health
Darkness stimulates the release of melatonin, a hormone responsible for regulating sleep-wake cycles and that has also been shown to promote relaxation. By wearing a light-blocking mask, you can increase your brain’s production of melatonin and alleviate symptoms of insomnia, anxiety, and stress before bed, allowing you to experience a deeper sense of calm during sleep. Good quality sleep is also essential for maintaining calm, stable moods during the day.