The Science Behind Beauty Sleep

Ever been told that you look like a train wreck after a bad night’s sleep? Well, there may be some truth to that.

Researchers at the University of Michigan working on treating sleep apnea with a system called CPAP (a mask and breather, basically) noticed that their patients started looking a bit better after a few weeks of treatment—their bad skin and dark eye circles slowly disappearing. Rather than shrugging and saying, “Well, duh!” like your average internet commenter, they decided to conduct a more rigorous test.

According to their study, published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, two thirds of sleep apnea patients looked better after a few months of treatment with CPAP. Researchers used a “face-mapping” technique called photogrammetry, regularly used by surgeons to plan operations because it can measure tiny differences in facial contours. In another test, an independent panel rated unmarked before and after images, favouring the after images about two-thirds of the time.

So, the good news is that some extra time between the sheets might translate to an improved mug. The bad news? You’ve got a one-third chance of bupkis.



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