Some people like sleeping in Pajamas. Some people like sleeping naked. Some people sleep almost naked; maybe just in underwear. This is all well and good, and naturally, different people having different preferences is perfectly fine, and if one way works better for you, then great, keep at it.
But, if you happen to be having problems with anything from insomnia to belly fat to feeling close to your partner, it turns out sleeping naked, or almost naked—if you sleep with nothing but a light underwear or panty (no bra), that’s close enough for the purposes of this article—does have several advantages. Let’s discuss them.
Actually Falling and Staying Asleep
Perhaps the most important benefit of sleeping is, well, actually sleeping. See, your body relies on cooling itself off to fall asleep. Your body naturally releases body heat while you sleep, and in fact, it’s a lowering of core body temperature that initiates sleep in the first place. As snuggly as those nice foot pajamas or fuzzy socks may be, if you’re having a hard time falling asleep, staying asleep, sleeping soundly, or sleeping long enough at night, they might be the culprit. Try doing without tonight and see if it helps.
Reducing Belly Fat
This one is an indirect correlation, as sleep itself doesn’t directly affect body fat, but waking up without getting enough sleep means you can wake up when your cortisol levels are really high. You see, cortisol is one of the compounds that—among other functions—regulates your sleeping and waking cycle. Having high cortisol levels can make you hungry, and specifically make you crave belly-fat-causing comfort foods. Sleeping naked can keep you from waking early, and thus prevent those cravings.
Preventing Aging and Skin Diseases
Sleeping naked lets your body regulate its own temperature better, as we already mentioned. Of course, you can pile on the blankets if it’s cold, but being naked underneath all those layers still promotes better temperature regulation and airflow than wearing clothing of any kind does. Sound, satisfying sleep helps prevent wrinkles, dark eye circles, and a number of other aging signs. Letting your bare skin air out also decreases your risk of diseases like athlete’s foot and other nasty skin problems.
Bonding and Closeness
If you sleep with a partner, sleeping naked means more frequent skin-to-skin contact, which facilitates feeling close and bonding with people in general (i.e. promoting the release of oxytocin can make your friendships and family relationships better too, not just your bond with your partner). Healthy oxytocin levels also help deal with stress effectively, combat depression, and reducing inflammation and blood pressure.
Being exposed to your own body regularly has a tendency to lead to better self-acceptance and feeling good about yourself. When you see and feel your own body more intimately on a regular basis, it becomes easier to accept it as perfect okay and beautiful just as it is. So sleeping naked can make you more confident, and can—by extension—make you a more tolerant, loving, and accepting person in general, because loving others starts with loving yourself.