Are you anxious by nature? Are you going through a particularly stressful time? If this is the case, you will surely notice the action of stress on the skin: imperfections, dull complexion, and marked wrinkles set in quickly. To soothe your skin and preserve its beauty, here is an overview of the effects of stress on the skin, and our tips to remedy it!
what effect of stress on the skin?
Stress pimples on the skin of the face and body
Stress, which is basically a defense mechanism in a dangerous situation, can quickly have a negative impact on our bodies. Prolonged or chronic stress causes chemical reactions, which ultimately harm the whole body.
The skin is no exception to the rule: when you face a stress peak or chronic stress, the level of cortisol increases. This hormone, also called the stress hormone, increases the production of sebum. The excess sebum then clogs the pores, which leads to the appearance of blackheads or acne pimples. Depending on the person, stress pimples can appear on the skin of the face only, or also on the body, in sparse or in patches.
Stress and skin aging: beware of wrinkles!
In dermatology, we generally speak of oxidative stress, to designate the stress that affects the epidermis. Indeed, cortisol does not only increase the production of sebum, but it also alters the skin barrier. Our skin is more sensitive, more fragile, and more difficult to face as free radicals. Result: skin aging accelerates, the skin dries up, wrinkles deepen, and pigment spots may appear.
Altered complexion due to stress
Beyond cortisol, stress releases many hormones: adrenaline, oxytocin, vasopressin or ACTH. Each causes chain reactions in the body and in skin tissue.
Depending on the type of stress encountered, these hormones can cause vasoconstriction, which results in a paler complexion, which draws towards the gray. In other cases, stress causes vasodilation, and the face becomes redder, as a whole, or in patches.
Dry and itchy skin at the rendezvous
As seen previously, stress unbalances the skin barrier and weakens the hydrolipidic film. Less protected against external aggressions, the skin dries up and is damaged. In addition, when the hydrolipidic film is altered, the water naturally contained in the epidermis evaporates more quickly.
The skin is then dehydrated and dry, which can cause significant discomfort: tightness, itching, a burning sensation, irritation at the slightest friction. If your skin is prone to dryness or sensitivity, it can develop into flaking.
Be careful, in people affected by certain skin pathologies, such as psoriasis or eczema, stress can cause seizures and rashes.
A tired eye area
When we are stressed, stress hormones can cause blood vessels to dilate or narrow. Blood circulation and lymphatic drainage are then less efficient. The area around the eyes with very thin skin, blood, and lymph stagnating under the skin are very visible: dark circles are darker, more pronounced, and can even create bags under the eyes.
How to reduce the effects of stress on the skin?
To limit breakage and fight against the effects of stress on the skin, you need to adapt your beauty routine:
If you’re prone to stress pimples, regular exfoliation will help unclog pores, and a cleansing mask once a week will help reduce excess oil. Every day, continue to hydrate your skin to allow it to regenerate and protect itself against aggressions.
If your dark circles are more pronounced, use an eye contour morning and evening. To fight against dark circles and bags and decongest your eyes, do not hesitate to place your treatment in the refrigerator.
In case of itching and tightness, use a richer cream than usual, such as our beauty restoring gel, or our deep hydration cream, perfect for deep regeneration of the skin.
Of course, the best way to reduce the action of stress on the skin is to attack the cause! To alleviate your anxiety, the practice of sport, meditation, and a healthy lifestyle are recommended. Maintain a sufficient and regular sleep cycle, try to balance your diet as best as possible, and give yourself time away from screens, emails and texts!