It’s not just our emotional state that’s affected, when it comes to stress, skin suffers too. In this post learn how to recognize the impact of stress on your skin. Plus, some tips and skincare products to help manage it.
What Stress Does
Whether related to our jobs, our relationships or our finances, stress is part of modern-day life. And, it’s not necessarily bad. Good stress, like the kind involved with planning a party, a trip or getting a new job that we love, usually lasts for a short time and makes us feel alive, happy and excited. Other stress, what we often call bad stress, tends to be ongoing. It’s what happens when we’re faced with things like financial stress, a relationship breakup or the uncertainty that we’re all facing due to Covid-19, right now. This kind of stress can damage our health.
When we’re under stress, our bodies trigger the release of hormones like cortisol and adrenaline into our systems. These ‘chemical messengers’ lead to bodily responses including an increased heart rate, higher blood pressure and more sugar in the bloodstream. Not so bad if we experience it for just a short time, but when we’re under stress for a long period, the mental and physical impact can be harmful to our well-being.
Stress, Skin Changes
Beyond the changes described above, cortisol’s release also affects our skin. Oil and sebum production increase, which can result in acne or increased skin sensitivity. Cortisol may weaken the skin’s immune system and increase the breaking down and failing to repair tissues. A decrease in collagen and elastin leads to wrinkles, lines and dull looking skin. If that wasn’t enough, cortisol amps up inflammation, causing flare-ups in conditions like eczema, rosacea and psoriasis.
During periods of stress, revisit your skin care routine. Put aside the harsh treatments – like stripping cleansers and exfoliants, and focus on being gentle. Try switching to a gentle cleanser, like our Cloud Nine Foaming Cleansing Crème, rich in antioxidant and anti-inflammatory ingredients. In addition to cleaning, it also moisturizes and protects skin. Continue to apply sunscreen daily to defend against UV ray damage and keep skin moisturized if it is dry. Our Daily infusion Moisturizer hydrates without greasiness and is perfect for all skin types. For a bit of a hydration boost, add in an oil, which helps to soften skin and lock in moisture. Our Antioxidant Face Oil contains fatty acids, antioxidants and skin soothing bisabolol, to help reduce inflammation.
Stress Management 101
This time will pass, but it may take a while for us to get there. In the meantime, try to manage stress with a few moments of self-care:
- Get enough sleep, between 7 and 9 hours for most people
- Exercise three or four times a week – walking and yoga are fantastic!
- Consider meditation or deep breathing exercises
- Relax with a book or connect with a friend
- Focus on eating a healthy diet, but don’t beat yourself up if you make a slip. We have enough to worry about already!
There isn’t one single method that works for everyone, but try a few different things and you’ll find what works for you. Do you have any stress management tips to share?