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Lines and wrinkles are an inevitable part of the ageing process but the rate and depth of wrinkle formation can be determined by the decisions you make. It may come as a surprise to hear that the type of pillow you sleep can either facilitate or obstruct the development of lines and wrinkles. That’s because certain materials jar with skin health while others support it

Appearing on TV show TodayTonight a couple of years back, Australian based cosmetic nurse Laura Lynch said cotton pillowcases are one of the worst culprits for wrinkle formation.

“Cotton doesn’t allow for the skin to slide so it catches the skin, pulling it into a position and it doesn’t really allow the skin to bounce back to its natural form.”

So, what should we sleep on?

Copper pillowcases appear to be conducive to healthy skin.

Studies of copper peptides (a peptide is a short chain of amino acids) have shown that they can help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by increasing collagen proteins, according to a research review.

As copper can be absorbed through intact skin, researchers in a study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology reasoned that sleeping on pillowcases containing copper-impregnated fibres would reduce skin wrinkles.

An eight-week, double blind, parallel, randomised study was carried out, in which healthy volunteers, aged 30-60, used either copper oxide-containing pillowcases or control pillowcases without copper.

Skin conditions of the subjects were evaluated at baseline (before treatment) and following four and eight weeks of sleeping on the pillowcases.

The use of the copper oxide-containing pillowcase resulted in significant decrease of crow’s feet after four weeks, but none was observed in the control group, as determined by the expert graders.

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“Crow’s feet” is the term given to those fine lines around the eye area.

Roughness parameters were improved after four and eight weeks in the copper group, but there were no changes during the course of the study in the control group.

What’s more, no adverse reactions were observed or reported during the eight-weeks study.

“Sleeping on copper oxide-containing pillowcases results in reduction of wrinkles depth and overall improvement of skin appearance,” the researchers concluded.

Other treatments for wrinkles

There are lots of different treatments for wrinkles. Examples include skin creams, chemical peels, dermabrasion and microdermabrasion, laser resurfacing, derma filler injections and botulinum toxin.

According to Bupa, creams and gels that contain retinoids (a form of vitamin A) can improve fine lines, make your skin smoother and your skin colour more even.

“They do this by repairing damage to skin cells and tightening your skin, so fine lines are less visible.”

According to Bupa, chemical peels aim to improve and smooth the texture of the skin on your face, helping to reduce lines and fine wrinkles.

“They use various chemicals to remove the damaged outer layers of your skin, after which your body produces a new layer of skin.”

The health body continues: “Chemical peels range from mild chemical peels that you can buy over the counter, to deeper chemical peels.

“You can use an over-the-counter peel to improve your skin’s appearance if you have fine lines. You’ll need an experienced clinician or doctor to do a deeper chemical peel for you in a clinic or hospital.”

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