It’s no secret that stress is bad for you, and the only thing that makes stress worse is people telling you how bad it is for your health and…making a viscous circle. So before we tell you what happens to your skin when you’re stressed (don’t worry, we’ll also say how to make it better), just take a deep breath and take a sip or water. Or a glass of wine, whichever works!

Acne

Don’t panic, stress doesn’t cause acne, but it certainly makes symptoms worse and more prominent. When our bodies undergo a stress our we release a hormone called cortisol, which is often referred to as the stress hormone. The excretion of cortisol can create inflammation, affect oil production levels and lead to breakouts.

The most important thing to reduce breakouts when stressed is to pay attention to your daily skin regime. Call this your “wind down time”, that way you don’t stress about your skin and take care of it at the same time.

Sensitivity

Your skin is a lot more sensitive to cosmetics and the outside environment during times of stress, so you may have reactions to products that you usually wouldn’t. Make sure to use soothing products that contain ingredients such as aloe vera, cucumber, camomile and honey on your skin. You can even make a soothing face mask at home. Not only will the process relax you, but your skin will feel so much better afterwards, and you know what reduces stress? Looking fabulous!

Eye bags

No one is shocked here, but stress reduces a good night’s sleep and therefore makes the bags under your eyes more apparent. This is especially bad if you sleep on your stomach because the fluid will accumulate faster and make it harder to drain. You can fix this with a good bit of spooning; if you know that you’re going to be tired in the morning or predict a bad night’s sleep, put a couple of spoons in the fridge or freezer for the morning.

When you wake up, take the spoons out and massage your under eye bags from the inner to out of corners. If you have trouble sleeping often, make sure you turn off all LED screens (phones, ipads, laptops etc) at least an hour before bed so your body can naturally wind down. Electronic devices often trick your eyes into thinking it’s still day light… which certainly explains how you managed to binge watch Grey’s Anatomy till 3am.

Dryness

Chances are that if you’re stressed you’re running on coffee to keep energy (and sanity) levels high. However, the problem with drinking coffee is that it’s not great for hydrating your skin and it tends to make you feel full (especially if you have cappuccino’s or lattes), so the chances of you drinking water and pretty much slim to none. The other problem with cortisol is that it damages our skin’s ability to hold water, so make sure you’re moisturising regularly and drinking plenty of water. If you get bored with water add in things like cucumber, mint, lemon to your water bottle or anything to enhance the flavour. Green tea is also a great shout for increasing your water intake and its packed full of antioxidants!

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It’s no secret that stress is bad for you, and the only thing that makes stress worse is people telling you how bad it is for your health and…making a viscous circle. So before we tell you what happens to your skin when you’re stressed (don’t worry, we’ll also say how to make it better),…