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Silk Pillowcase Makes You Healthier And Look More Awesome

Silk Pillowcase Makes You Healthier And Look More Awesome

It’s well-known that women and men like to get their beauty sleep. Drinking plenty of water and getting 8 hours of sleep a night will keep you looking young and vibrant as we have been told by generations of people before us. But have you ever considered what role your bed-linen has in your beauty regime? Most of us opt for a standard cotton pillowcase but the ultimate nighttime beauty-must is, in fact, a silk pillowcase. Backed up by scientific studies, researchers have found that sleeping on a silk pillowcase actually does wonders for our hair and skin as well as many other health benefits. Considering we spend between 6-8 hours with our pillows every night, the research points to the silk pillowcase as a secret saviour.

Silk Pillowcases Reduce Skin Problems, Say Researchers

Researchers at the University of Bologna have conducted studies into how silk pillowcases help patients with atopic dermatitis – a chronic inflammatory skin disease that has become rather widespread over the last couple of decades. Published in The British Journal of Dermatology, their research found that cotton was an irritant to those suffering from the disease due to its short, rough fibres and the way they move across the skin. Silk, on the other hand, has much smoother fibres creating less friction and calming any skin conditions. Of course, even to people without a skin condition, silk is a great benefit as reducing the amount of abrasion on the skin will only help with overall skin health.

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Another benefit is that silk doesn’t absorb the natural moisture from our skin. Cotton, however, does the opposite; drawing much needed moisture and with us spending a vast amount of our time in bed, this can have a detrimental effect on our face. As silk doesn’t draw any moisture, it therefore allows for more efficient use of night creams, providing better skin hydration with clearer skin as the end result.

Silk is also a natural heat regulator, which means it will keep your skin cool in the summer and warm in the winter. This will prevent further causes of dry or overheated skin while you sleep.

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Silk Pillowcases Help With Anti-Ageing Due To Essential Amino Acids

The way we place our face on a pillow while we sleep can affect the amount of wrinkles we can develop. Since cotton pillowcases are more harsh on our skin, they can pull on the delicate skin, especially around the eye area, as we move. Silk pillowcases can actually help with anti-ageing since it stops any wrinkles forming due to weight from the head to the pillow. Do you ever find yourself waking up with annoying sleep creases on your face? Well this is a down to the cotton pillowcase causing your skin to mark and ultimately deepen wrinkles. Switch to silk and you will dramatically reduce morning crease-face and fight off those lines.

Silk also contains a natural protein and 18 essential amino acids. Studies have shown that amino acids can counter the effects of ageing, especially in the facial skin and can help calm the nervous system. It also contains natural cellular albumen which means it helps speed up metabolism of skin cells therefore helping to reduce further ageing.

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Silk Pillowcases Are Recommended By Haircare Specialists To Improve Hair Health

Silk pillowcases have been found to help with hair health and, in particular, with thinning of the hair. The short, rough fibres of cotton can rub against the shaft of the hair creating unwanted damage and breakage. With silk pillowcases, hair does a gliding motion rather than rubs on the fabric decreasing the chance of developing knotted hair and split ends. Like with the skin, hair needs to retain moisture to give it vitality and shine so the cotton pillowcase would be a big no-no if you want amazing, shiny locks. The sebum we produce in the hair follicles is also lessened with the use of silk pillowcases resulting in less greasy hair when we wake up in the morning.

Silk Pillowcases Are Hypoallergenic

For those that suffer from allergies, then a silk pillowcase can help you immensely. Silk is naturally hypoallergenic, which means it has a natural resistance to dust mites, fungus and mould therefore those who suffer from asthma or eczema will benefit. Reducing contact with allergens such as dust and chemicals is necessary for allergy sufferers if they want a good nights’ sleep or keep themselves optimally healthy at night. Medical experts suggest decreasing dust and other allergen exposure to a minimum so silk pillowcases can aid sufferers in their daily allergy management. Remember to wash and use it well; all silk can be machine-washed but must be done on a cool, gentle setting with hypoallergenic washing powder.

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What Is The Best Silk Pillowcase To Buy?

Research is the key when buying a silk pillowcase as not all silks are created equally. You must make sure that it is 100% silk; there are many man-made types out there which you need to avoid. The best type of silk is long strand Mulberry Silk with a traditional charmeuse weave. This is the smoothest silk out there so it will give optimum results to your beauty regime but it can be pricy so you can look for cheaper options as long as it is 100% silk.

A final added bonus is that silk pillowcases are also 100% sustainable and more earth friendly than any other fabric in existence which is another plus for this miracle material. So perhaps it’s time to consider switching from cotton to silk? I think your hair, skin and overall health will thank you for it.

Featured photo credit: Nenad Aksic via shutterstock.com

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Jenny Marchal

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Last Updated on August 15, 2018

7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

Bodyweight exercises are gaining ground in the fitness world due to the practicality and simplicity of getting in shape using your own body weight. Planks are one form of bodyweight exercises that will never go out of fashion. Planks are one of the most effective exercises you can do. Why? Because they require a small time investment on your part, and offer the chance to achieve substantial results in a relatively short span of time.

Video Summary

Why is it important to train up our core strength?

There are numerous sites and blogs which detail ways to build your core muscles or core strength. Often though, these sites neglect to explain what your core muscles actually are, and why building them is important.

This is quite surprising, as core muscles are quite easy to explain. Your core muscles are a series of muscles in your midsection, and are used in most forms of movement. Though they aren’t housed in your arms or legs, your core muscles can help transfer force from one limb to another, or are used in addition to muscles in your arms or legs to increase their effectiveness. As such a strong core will make a big improvement on your ability to move and exercise further.

Also they are great for helping other muscles in your midsection such as your abdominal muscles. Your abdominal muscles are important for supporting your back and spinal column, and as such are important aids in preventing injuries. However for them to be most effective you need to spend a lot of time developing your core muscles.

In short, planking exercises can make a huge improvement in your muscles down your whole body. Making them a hugely effective exercise to perform.

One Exercise, multiple benefits

There are few forms of exercise as effective at building your core as planking exercises. However, planking exercises benefit far more than just your core strength.

By holding yourself in the position for a planking exercise, you’ll notice that your biceps, neck, and shoulder muscles are also being tested and strained. This this encouraging their buildup and development. This is great news if you like to do press ups, developed shoulder muscles will have a big impact on your press up performance.

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When planking, you are holding yourself up through your arms and biceps and so by holding a planking position, your arm muscles are being toned and developed. Making planking a great alternative exercise to other forms of bicep developing exercises.

Moving down your midsection, successful plank exercises actually develop the muscles in your butt! These muscles tend to be ignored by a lot of exercises, so this is another great benefit of plank exercises.

In much the same way as you develop your biceps and arm muscles, holding the planking position helps develop the muscles in your thighs too.

What is even better is that planking exercises don’t take much time at all. In fact you should probably only spend about ten minutes max per day in the planking exercise.

What will happen when you start doing planks every day

    1. You’ll improve core definition and performance: 

    Planks are an ideal exercise for the abdominal muscles exactly because they engage all major core muscle groups including the transverse abdominus, the rectus abdominusthe external oblique muscle, and the glutes. The importance of strengthening each muscle group cannot be underestimated either, for all of these groups serve their own purpose. If you strengthen these muscle groups you will notice:

    • Transverse abdominis: increased ability to lift heavier weights.
    • Rectus adbominis: improved sports performance, particularly with jumping. This muscle group is also responsible for giving you the renowned six pack look.
    • Oblique muscles: improved capacity for stable side-bending and waist-twisting
    • Glutes: a supported back and a strong, shapely booty.

    2. You’ll decrease your risk of injury in the back and spinal column

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      Doing planks is a type of exercise that allow you to build muscle while also making sure that you are not putting too much pressure on your spine or hips. According to the American Council on Exercise, doing planks regularly not only significantly reduces back pain but it also strengthens your muscles and ensures a strong support for your entire back, especially in the areas around your upper back.

      Check out this article if you would like to find out about how doing planks on different surfaces can impact the effectiveness of this exercise in strengthening your core.

      3. You’ll experience an increased boost to your overall metabolism

        Planking is an excellent way of challenging your entire body because doing them every day will burn more calories than other traditional abdominal exercises, such as crunches or sit-ups. The muscles you strengthen by doing this exercise on a day-to-day basis will ensure that you burn more energy even when sedentary. This is especially important if you are spending the majority of your day sitting in front of a computer. Also, making it a daily 10- to 1 minute home exercise before or after work will not only provide an enhanced metabolic rate but it will also ensure that that metabolic rate remains high all day long, (yes, even while you are asleep).

        4. You’ll significantly improve your posture

          Planking exercises have a great impact and improvement on your posture. This is great news as a strong posture brings with it a huge number of fantastic benefits .

          A good posture keeps your bones and joins in the correct alignment which means both your bones and joints will be better maintained and more healthy, but also means the overall effectiveness of your muscles will be improved.

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          A good posture will ensure your back or spine is in the correct position and so you will suffer less back pain.

          On top of everything, someone with good posture looks better, healthier, and more confident.

          5. You’ll improve overall balance

            Have you ever felt that when you tried standing on one leg, you couldn’t stand up straight for more than a couple of seconds? It’s not because you were drunk- unless you happened to be at the time!-  but rather, it’s because your abdominal muscles weren’t strong enough to give you the balance you needed. Through improving your balance by doing side planks and planks with extensions you will boost your performance in every kind of sporting activity.

            6. You’ll become more flexible than ever before

              Flexibility is a key benefit of doing planks regularly, for this form of exercise expands and stretches all your posterior muscle groups – shouldersshoulder blades, and collarbone – while also stretching your hamstrings, arches of your feet, and toes. With a side plank added in to the mix, you can also work on your oblique muscles. This will provide you with further benefits when it comes to hyper-extending your toes, a movement that is crucial for supporting your body’s weight.

              7. You’ll witness mental benefits

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                Plank exercises have a particular effect on our nerves, making them an excellent means of improving overall mood. How? Well, they stretch out muscle groups that contribute to stress and tension in the body. Just think about it: you are sitting in your chair, at home or at work, all day long; your thigh muscles get tight, your legs get heavy due to being bent for several hours; and tension develops in your shoulders due to being forced to slump forward all day. These are all circumstances that put too stress on the muscles and nerves. The good news is that planks not only calm your brain, but they can also treat anxiety and symptoms of depression– but only if you make it part of your daily routine.

                How to hold a plank position

                1. Get into pushup position on the floor.
                2. Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms.
                3. Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from ears to toes with no sagging or bending.
                4. Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
                5. Hold the position for as long as you can.
                6. Remember to breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly and steadily.
                7. When your form begins to suffer, pull the plug. You’re only benefiting from the plank by actually doing the plank.

                Watch the video if you have any doubt!

                Here is a great infographic that shows the best plank variation exercises to evenly target all abdominal muscle groups:

                  How to improve your plank time gradually

                  1. Start with the easier variation if needed. You can start with a bent-knee plank if you can’t perform a regular plank yet. If you can hold a plank for more than two minutes with ease, you can move on to these tougher variations.
                  2. Practise every day. Space your planking exercise throughout the day and do 3-4 times every day. Try to hold the position 10 seconds longer each time.
                  3. Perform other body-weight exercises at the same time. Push-up and squat will improve your core strength too.

                  Are you ready to devote 5-10 minutes of your day, every day, to stay fit, healthy and, most importantly, strong as a bull? Then jump in and make doing plank exercises a part of your life.

                  Who Should Be Cautious Doing The Plank?

                  You need to be cautious doing Planking exercises if any of these risks apply to you:

                  • Prolapse
                  • After prolapse surgery
                  • Pelvic pain conditions
                  • Weak or poorly functioning pelvic floor muscles
                  • Previous childbirth
                  • Overweight

                  Choose an alternative pelvic floor abdominal exercise or consult your doctor before performing plank regularly.

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