The Impact of Stress on Your Skin and How to Combat It | Sundae School - Sundae Body

The Impact of Stress on Your Skin and How to Combat It

The Impact of Stress on Your Skin and How to Combat It

Stressheads, we have a problem: Our worries are affecting our gorgeous skin. Of course, this lid-poppin’ intel isn’t gonna make us pop our worry bubbles right away. But, it’s pretty refreshing (and de-stressing) to know that there are plenty of ways to help our skin health thrive (not just survive in the wilderness out here).

So, how do our stress hormones impact our skin, and how can we combat these stress-related skin issues? Hold my Sundae. Let’s do this thing.

How stress affects the body

Heard of cortisol? It’s also known as the stress hormone, because increased cortisol is released into the bloodstream when we’re super stressed out. Having the right cortisol balance is essential for our health, but like chocolate, cookies and tequila…too much of it can be a bad thing. Cortisol triggers increased oil production, which can clog pores and lead to breakouts. As for our skin moisture barrier – psychological stress can have an absolute field day messing this up for us. By disrupting the barrier – which by the way, locks in moisture and protects us from harmful microbes – it prolongs its repair. We’ve seen this in clinical studies in healthy participants (and you can’t argue with science, people).

So, as you can see, our stress levels and our skin are intimately connected – and if it wasn’t so horrifying, we’d say it was romantic. Next up – learn why our skin can be an A-grade drama queen (sometimes).

The effect of stress on common skin conditions

Speaking of drama queens: let’s talk about skin conditions, which are easily triggered or exacerbated by stress. When tension hits, your body amps up inflammation in defense, which can spell trouble for skin conditions. And, if you’re already dealing with inflammation, stress can turn it into a full-blown skin circus, with eczema, rosacea or psoriasis taking center stage. (Not ideal.)

But, it’s not just our skin feeling the pressure; stress takes our mental health on a wild ride too (and not the fun rollercoaster kind). There is even a whole field that dedicates itself to this – it’s called ‘psychodermatology’. This field highlights the connection between mental well-being and skin health, revealing how stress claims the spotlight in both our body and mind dramas.

But – good news ahead – there are steps we can take to manage it all:

Skincare tips for stressed skin

Skin left high and dry? Here are some ways to help get your skin health back on track:

  • Use a gentle face and body cleanser (this is especially important if you have sensitive skin). 
  • Moisturise your body and face after you shower. This will help to lock in moisture and keep the skin hydrated. Yum. 
  • Look for anti-inflammatory products to help calm irritated skin and reduce redness and inflammation.
  • Purchase products with calming ingredients like Aloe Vera, Niacinamide, Chamomile, Green Tea and Oats (there’s plenty more where that came from!) These can help to alleviate the effects of stress on your precious skin.

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Before you start stressing about how much you’re stressing (been there, still there) take a breath, draw a bath, do whatever your body needs right now and be gentle with yourself. Lastly, remember that just like every day is for Sundae, every day is for self-care, too.

Happy Sundae x

Written By: Lizzie Waley (Sundae Co-Founder & Body Care Enthusiast) | LinkedIn

Fact Checked: Charnnie Frimpong (Sundae Content Marketing Manager) | Linkedin