Every year, after the holidays, I look at my skin and wonder—am I suffering from wine face? As much as I love the holiday season, I’m always a bit happy to be done with the busyness and indulgence that accompany it.
Don’t get me wrong – I love chocolates and wine as much as the next person but when January rolls around, I start to crave fresh, crispy salads, juicy berries and regular yoga classes. In addition to the few extra pounds that often seem to creep up on you during the season of excess, you may notice that your skin isn’t looking as fresh and dewy as normal.
May I introduce “wine face”?
What is Wine Face?
“Wine face” is a term coined by a London naturopath to describe the effects of alcohol consumption on the skin. Along with gluten face, dairy face, and sugar face, wine face outlines the negative impact of different foods on your appearance. Wine face typically happens to those who consume one or two glasses of wine most nights of the week, although it can be triggered by consuming any type of alcohol.
What Causes Wine Face?
Alcohol consumption impacts your body in many ways, including the appearance of your skin.
When you drink alcohol, it’s metabolized in the liver, which produces a toxic substance called acetaldehyde. This substance is responsible for many of the negative effects associated with alcohol, including the dilation of the delicate capillaries of the cheeks and nose, drawing blood to the surface of the skin and leading to facial redness and puffiness. With frequent alcohol consumption, the face may attain a permanent ruddy appearance.
Alcohol consumption is also dehydrating, which can make fine lines and wrinkles look worse.
Lastly, alcohol is known to decrease the production of collagen, which is essential for healthy and youthful-looking skin. Collagen gives the skin its strength, elasticity, and firmness. As collagen production decreases, the skin begins to sag, and wrinkles may become more noticeable.
What Does a Wine Face Look Like?
The main symptoms of wine face include:
- Lines or redness between the eyes
- Saggy eyelids
- Enlarged pores
- Facial redness
- Deep laughter lines
- Dehydrated skin with feathery lines across the cheeks
If you see these signs, it’s a good indication that your alcohol consumption is starting to have an impact on your appearance.
Can Wine Face Be Reversed?
The good news is that wine face is reversible.
The first step is to take a short break from alcohol, ideally for three weeks or more, to allow your gut to rebalance. During this time, it’s essential to drink plenty of water to help hydrate your skin. Water is crucial for healthy skin and helps your body to circulate nutrients and get rid of harmful substances that can contribute to skin and other health problems.
Once the three weeks are over, get into the habit of consuming alcohol in moderation. Sticking to an 80/20 rule can help you maintain a healthy balance. Abstain from alcohol for 80% of the time, but allow yourself the occasional glass in the remaining 20%.
The Impact of Alcohol on Skin Health
Alcohol is a known diuretic, which means it increases urine production and leads to dehydration. This dehydration can be detrimental to skin health, as it can cause the skin to look dull and lifeless. It can also exacerbate existing skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, and acne.
Reducing your alcohol consumption benefits ALL the organs in your body; not just your skin. Excessive alcohol consumption has many other negative health implications, including developing high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, liver disease, and digestive problems. It also increases your risk of developing cancer of the breast, mouth, throat, esophagus, voice box, liver, colon, and rectum.
How to Get Rid of Wine Face?
Aside from taking a break from alcohol, there are several other steps you can take to help get rid of wine face.
- Make sure you’re drinking plenty of water to help hydrate your skin. Water is essential for healthy skin and helps your body to circulate nutrients and get rid of harmful substances that can contribute to skin and other health problems.
- Eat a healthy diet filled with lots of fruits and vegetables. These foods are rich in antioxidants, which help protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals that can be generated by consuming alcohol.
- Invest in a good skincare routine. Prep skin with cleansers, protect with sunscreen, prevent damage with antioxidants, and perfect and renew with retinoids. Our Ageless Skin Set contains all the essentials to help keep skin looking healthy and glowing.
How Long Does It Take to Get Rid of Wine Face?
For most of us, after taking a complete break from alcohol for several weeks, you’ll likely notice a difference to your skin’s appearance.
After this, it’s a good idea to avoid consuming it during the week and saving it for the weekends or special occasions.
What About Red Wine Face?
Red wine face isn’t different or special to “wine face” as the alcohol found in red wine is the same alcohol found in other types of alcoholic beverages. And, sadly, contrary to what the marketers want you to believe, red wine doesn’t have any special properties that help to benefit your health.
Wine face is a real thing, and it’s not just a myth. If you’re a regular wine drinker and you notice that your skin isn’t looking as fresh and youthful as it once was, it might be time to take a closer look at your alcohol consumption habits. Remember, the key is moderation. By taking a break from alcohol, drinking plenty of water, eating a healthy diet, and investing in a good skincare routine, you can help get rid of wine face and keep your skin looking healthy and youthful for years to come.