How to Reduce the Effects of Stress on Your Skin
Stress plays a major part in the health of our skin. When we are stressed, a hormone called cortisol is released, causing many things to occur in our bodies, including accumulating fat, as well as make your skin very dry, oily, wrinkled, or full of acne.
One stress effect on the skin is wrinkling. When cortisol is released, sugar levels in blood increase, which, in a continual flow, can cause such things as diabetes. On the skin, it encourages a process called glycation, a stress effect on the skin that damages collagen, hardening it, increasing the appearance of lines and wrinkles.
Another stress effect on the skin is dry skin, which has to do with cortisol yet again. In this case, cortisol decreases the skin’s natural production of something called hyaluronic acid, a natural moisturizer. It can also damage the skin’s protective qualities that allow it to keep hydration levels up. When these things are compromised, the skin, as an effect of stress, becomes dry and damaged.
Another major way that stress effects the skin is by affecting the complexion. When stressed, our bodies also produce adrenaline, which is helpful if you’re out in the woods running from a predator, but, in daily life, it only can hurt. When adrenaline is present, blood flow to the skin is decreased, taking important nutrients (most importantly, oxygen) away from the skin. This allows for toxins to build up, a step that leads many types of skin to develop cellulite as well. How do we avoid stress effects on the skin?
Sleep plays a big part in limiting cortisol. During sleep, our skin repairs what has been damaged during the day. A lack of sleep puts stress on skin, so making sure you have at least 7 hours of sleep is a must for healthy, stress-free skin.
Physical activity boosts circulation, which battles the effects that adrenaline can have on the skin. In other words, physical activity helps your complexion, and, when there is more blood flow to the skin, there are also fewer toxins, and thus less cellulite, and more alive, healthy, radiant-looking skin.
Taking the Time to Relax
Many stressed people forget that they can embody a way of life that limits stress altogether. If you take the time once in a while to slow down, take some breaks, relax, and try to take things not too seriously, you will be not as stressed. Meditation, deep breathing, and quiet alone time can be just the thing to eliminate stress, and the effects that stress has on the skin.