Health Care

Skipping your beauty sleep may make people avoid you

Skipping your beauty sleep may make people avoid you”

"An unhealthy-looking face, whether due to sleep deprivation or otherwise, might activate disease-avoiding mechanisms in others", researchers from Sweden's Karolinska Institute said.

As a result, they were less attractive to potential partners and less likely to be chosen by friends and colleagues to socialise with.

Here's what they discovered: People were less inclined to want to socialize with those who hadn't gotten enough sleep. The adults were asked to rate how attractive, healthy, or trustworthy they perceived the person in each photograph to be, as well as whether they would like to socialize with that person.

But lead researcher Tina Sundelin said she doesn't want people to stress about getting enough sleep after hearing of these findings.

Previous research has shown a night without any sleep has the same effect.

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"It also adds to previous studies on facial appearance after sleep loss, showing that despite using a different scale, and a less substantial and more natural sleep-loss condition, the relationships between sleep, attractiveness and a healthy appearance still hold". They were asked to get two good nights' sleep, and then two bad nights of sleep (maximum 4 hours).

The Swedish participants aged 18 to 47 were then photographed after each two day routine and rated by 122 people for looks, health, sleepiness and trustworthiness.

So as far as attractiveness is concerned, beauty sleep should be making a resurgence.

Those who were exhausted were rated as "significantly" less attractive.

They were also asked if they would like to socialise with the person in the photo, the "Los Angeles Times" reported.

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In short, people can tell when you're exhausted and think you are less attractive when you haven't got enough sleep.

One possible explanation is a a healthy, attractive face is characterised by a certain degree of redness.

"Blood flow to the skin is strongly promoted by sleep and this vasodilation may be a way for the body to facilitate the distribution of endogenous defense agents".

According to the results, the raters were less interested in socializing with subjects who looked exhausted.

"Telling someone they look exhausted says more about your perception of them than you might think", the authors wrote.

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