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How Does Stress Affect The Skin?

Jacqui Slaughter

Posted on February 22 2018

It's like a forbidden love affair, but there's no doubt that during times of high stress your skin may flare up and act all strange on you. 

We all encounter stress in different parts of our lives. It's a part of life and there's no escaping stress. It's how we respond to the stressors, that makes the difference between stress affecting us or not affecting us.  Eating healthy, exercise, getting plenty of sleep, and meditation absolutely help ease daily tensions, but how do you care for your skin when you are feeling overwhelmed?

How does stress affect the skin?

When we are stressed, our brain sends a signal to our nervous system to go into a "fight or flight" mode. When this happens we release hormones (cortisol) and chemicals into the bloodstream that have a direct affect on the way skin functions and heals itself.

In a nutshell, stress affects skin in five ways: accelerated aging, adult acne, irritation, dullness and dehydration. When skin is stressed it does not act properly, it's out of balance, it's literally exhausted, irritable, drained and depleted. Sound familiar????!!!

How do you care for stressed skin?

One of the first places you see stress show up is in the eye area because the skin is so thin and delicate. So it might pay to focus on the eyes first, because you can make the biggest impact there. Generally stress shows up in the form of puffiness, bags, dark circles and lines and wrinkles.

Be sure to keep a diet that's low in sodium as that can cause puffiness. Also, cut-out caffeine, alcohol and smoking! These can exacerbate symptoms.

Breakouts are also common when skin is stressed and women have the tendency to overdo it on the products at that time just because they want blemishes to go away! So don't use too many products and don't use them too often - just stick with your skin care regime that's working for you the majority of the time. 

Oily stressed skin is also inflamed and sensitive so you don't want to dry it out and abuse it. Use products with willow bark and don't forget to moisturise -- even oily skin needs hydration.

Stressed skin can also become dehydrated and dry so it's important to use a moisturiser that gives continuous hydration to skin like Rosehip Oil.  Essential Fatty Acids, found in our moisturisers, help repair the lipid barrier function (to lock in that moisture).

Rosehip Oil

Other tips for stressed skin?

+ keep blood sugar steady by eating small regular meals and adequate protein
+ get yourself some quality sleep, aim for 8-10 hours of sleep per night
+ go to bed the same time every night and wake the same time every morning
+ reduce caffeine and alcohol
+ exercise in moderation- skip the high intensity stuff and opt for yoga, pilates, walking or swimming
+ Learn how to say “no” to things and people, and instead say a big fat 'yes' to yourself
+ Feed your skin the essential plant based ingredients designed to balance hormones and fight skin bacteria with our Jojoba & Camellia Balancing Cream



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