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Study Finds That 'Beauty Sleep' Is Actually a Real Thing

Study Finds That 'Beauty Sleep' Is Actually a Real Thing

The findings underscore the link between sleep, attractiveness and a healthy appearance, suggesting that beauty sleep really is a thing.

The eye-opening study was conducted by the Karolinska Institute, which asked 25 university students to take part. The following week, the volunteers photographed themselves after having two consecutive nights with only four hours of sleep. They were also asked to rate participants' attractiveness, health, sleepiness, and trustworthiness.

"An unhealthy-looking face, whether due to sleep deprivation or otherwise, might activate disease-avoiding mechanisms in others", said Axelsson.

Next, the researchers recruited 122 adults - referred to as "raters" - and asked them view each photograph.

The paper also noted that "although attractiveness may only be weakly related to actual health, faces that look healthy are also considered attractive".

Furthermore, the study found that people's willingness to socialize with sleep-deprived people was only 2.1 percent less than their willingness to do so with fully rested people.

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But lead researcher Dr Tina Sundelin added: "I don't want to worry people or make them lose sleep over these findings".

That's potentially a problem for a lot of people: According to the National Sleep Foundation, adults over the age of 18 need a minimum of seven hours of sleep a night - and many don't get that.

The effect of sleep deprivation on other people's desire to socialize with that person was small, but still significant, according to the study's authors. The Royal Society Open Science journal also found people viewed the more worn out individuals as less attractive.

The team, lead by Dr Tina Sundelin, found that strangers were good at assessing how exhausted a person was, and that they rated the sleepy set of photographs as less attractive than the photos of the same people when they were well-rested. "We want our partners to be attractive and energetic".

"If someone looks exhausted, they look less interested in being with you and as if they would rather be asleep or alone", he said. So for now, try your best to avoid those lost hours of mind-numbing Instagram scrolling before bed-and get some damn beauty sleep. As it turns out, not getting enough sleep made participants score worse on all counts.

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