Stress can affect many things in life, including your appearance. Over time the effects of stress build up and show in our face, skin and bodies. I write a lot about the effects of stress and anxiety in my own life, but today I have a guest blogger to talk specifically about the effects of stress on your face.
10 Ways Stress Affects Your Face
When thinking about living a stress-free life, it seems like it’s almost impossible nowadays. We are so used to chasing success that we tend to forget about our well-being. By the time we reach our goals, the long-term stress we experienced along the way already did a lot of damage.
Skin is one of the parts that is hugely affected by our stress hormones. You get stressed out, then your body gives you more reasons to be upset. How annoying! Fortunately, there are effective products we can use to help with these skin issues. You should give Korean beauty products a try, as they are known for using natural ingredients and gentle care.
Going back to stress, it provides a lot of negative effects on our skin and we are here to know how and why this happens. We’ll try to make it as simple as possible.
It can be surprising how many people don’t realize that stress can be one of the culprits for their acne problems. Mind you, acne is not just a few pimples; acne is a type of skin disease whilst bumps, pimples, blackheads and whiteheads are some of its symptoms.
Cortisol is one of the hormones that is released when we are feeling stressed. It makes our oil gland produce more oil and this oil gets mixed up with dead skin cells which clog our pores and eventually lead to acne.
Yes, breakouts can be an effect of stress. Cortisol and CHR (corticotropin-releasing hormone) are to blame for this. CHR releases ACTH (adrenocorticotropic hormone) and this ACTH stimulates the release of cortisol. It doesn’t end here because, after you breakout, this can worsen inflammation and redness. A disaster after a disaster.
- Slower wound healing
Our skin acts as a shield from all the dangerous stuff from the external environment. When we experience long-term stress or chronic stress, our immune system is weakened. With a weak immune system, our body can’t function properly. The skin won’t be able to fight germs and bacteria which can lead to infections prolonging wounds.
- Dry Skin
There’s this thing called Transepidermal Water Loss or TEWL where the water from deeper layers of our skin evaporates through the skin’s surface. This is actually normal but stress can elevate the TEWL levels that can result to dry skin.
This is also a possibility connected to dry skin. Our skin’s functions are compromised when our immune system is weak. The outermost layer of our skin will be sensitive to foreign particles that can make us itch badly. Scratching, on the other hand, can be the start of a wound or inflammation so if this ever happens, don’t scratch too hard.
There is a condition called dysbiosis and this happens when our skin or gut is suffering from a microbial imbalance. When our skin experiences this, it produces redness and rashes. Having a strong immune system can avoid this from happening.
- Worsen existing skin conditions
Like what was mentioned above, stress can release cortisol and too much of it can trigger and worsen already existing conditions like eczema and psoriasis.
- Premature aging
According to Dr. Tausk, cortisol is known for being a collagen killer. As we know, stress spikes our cortisol levels and when it happens, it damages our collagen. This is why most stressed people look older. Although collagen production naturally decreases with age, stress can speed it up.
- Wrinkles and fine lines
Also connected to #4 and #8, wrinkles and fine lines are formed when our skin does not provide enough elasticity to the skin. This is normal when we age but premature fine lines and wrinkles are very common nowadays. It is important to moisturize especially on the skin around the eyes.
- Bags under eyes
When we are stressed, we have a hard time sleeping and our body does not get enough rest. According to Dr. Carol Clinton, being tired and stressed slows down our blood circulation in the eye area letting our blood stay there longer than it should. While this happens, capillaries burst and this results in dark eye circles.
Stress may be unavoidable but knowing how to handle your stress in your own way can be a great help for your overall health. Mental health is very important so never take it for granted. When you feel like everything that is happening is too much, take a break as long as you need to. We only get one life and one body, let’s not waste it.