beauty, Lifestyle

How stress damages your skin and how to combat it

Today we’re talking about the different ways the stress can affect your skin, some things you can do to help your skin, and what else, besides stress, could be causing your skin problems. I’ve also included my current skincare routine at the bottom!

I have a love hate relationship with my skin. In the last few years my skin has been a lot better, with only a few outbreaks. One thing that can really affect my skin is my stress levels. So I thought I would put together this post in case any of you suffered in similar ways.

The Different Ways That Stress Can Affect Your Skin

Acne

The stress hormone cortisol causes production of corticotropin releasing hormone. This hormone then stimulates your sebaceous glands to release oil, which then clogs your pores and causes acne.

Dry Skin

There is research to show that stress can affect the outer layer of your skin, which is there to protect the skin underneath. This causes the skin to become dry and limits the skin’s ability to heal itself.

As well as this, when we’re stressed, our adrenaline spikes, activating our fight-or-flight response and causing you to sweat more, then because you’re sweating, you become more dehydrated, drying out your skin. 

Wrinkles

Stress can affect the skin’s elasticity, contributing to wrinkle formation. If you’re frowning a lot because you’re stressed, this can also lead to wrinkle formation.

Cause Existing Conditions to Flare Up

Stress can have an impact on your immune system, triggering inflammatory responses that flare up conditions such as eczema or psoriasis.

Rashes

The weakened immune system can disturb the balance of bacteria on your skin, leading to redness and rashes.


Products That Can Help

  • Redness- check your current routine for any products that might be causing irritation, and get rid. Keep your skincare routine to the bare minimum.
  • Acne – wash your face twice a day, but avoid exfoliating lots as this can cause you to produce more oil. Try a spot treatment with Salicylic Acid, and remember to moisturise!
  • Dry skin – Don’t wash your face as much if you have dry skin (I have dry skin and I only wash my face with cleanser on an evening, in the morning I just rinse my face with water. Use a moisturiser with hyaluronic acid and Vitamin E.

Lifestyle Changes That Can Help

Although these products can help treat your skin, it’s more useful to treat the underlying cause. Think about why you are stressed, and see if there’s anything you can do to reduce your stress levels. We all have periods of stress, especially coming up to exams, but it’s not healthy to be stressed 100% of the time. Check out my post for some ideas to de-stress.


Other Things That Could Be Affecting Your Skin

Hormones

I think we all pretty much know this one, especially those of us with monthly cycles. Your hormones will fluctuate throughout your cycle, meaning sometimes no matter how much you wash your face or how expensive your moisturizer is, your skin will probably change.

Diet

Diet can affect your skin in many ways, both positively and negatively. For example, consuming lots of water can help keep your skin hydrated and healthy, whereas eating foods that are high in sugar can lead to more breakouts.

Face Masks

I don’t mean the skincare kind of facemasks, I mean the Corona kind of facemasks, which I think we’re all familiar with by now. It’s important to make sure you’re washing your face well at the end of the day, and try and avoid wearing lots of makeup that will clog your pores. Also if you wear reusable cloth face masks (not the surgical ones) remember to wash them!

Lack of Sleep

Lack of sleep and stress are kind of a positive cycle, lack of sleep can cause stress, and stress can cause lack of sleep. Lack of sleep can cause dark circles (I’m pretty sure my fellow students will be fully aware of this one) and it can also make our faces more puffy.

Alcohol

Alcohol has a whole range of effects on the skin: toxic metabolic by-products, skin dryness, dilating pores leading to black heads, and releasing histamine that causes redness, which over years can become permanent. 


My Current Skincare Routine

So here’s my current routine

AM:

  • On a morning I just rinse my face with water and apply my moisturiser

PM:


Please note that this is just information I have collated from other sources, please always do your own research, as what works for my skin might not work for yours. I am not a professional!

*Some of the links I use are affiliate links that help me earn a small commission from your purchase, at no additional cost to you. This helps support me and enables me to continue working hard to provide content for you*


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References

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