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Home Blog How Stress Affects Skin

How Stress Affects Skin

Stress. We've all experienced it at one point or another. When we get stressed, it's common to experience some physical and emotional side effects. Common symptoms of stress are pretty easy to spot. You may snap at your friends, feel overwhelmed, begin to eat your feelings or even notice an onset of adult acne. In cases of severe stress, stress can also manifest as skin conditions such as rashes. While these are just a few of the many symptoms of stress, they're not something that you should ignore. These symptoms are your body's way of saying it’s on overload. It’s also an opportunity to slow down and tune in. The longer you ignore the signs of stress, the worse your symptoms and discomfort may become.

While stress is a normal part of life, it’s not normal to experience debilitating stress on a regular basis. Specifically, if your skin is stressing out – whether it’s a stress rash on your face or other visible symptom – you don’t have to suffer in silence. We’re here to help you treat and transform your skin back into balance. As Skin Health Experts, we’ve put together a guide to understanding skin stress as well as how to best treat and prevent ongoing issues with skincare for sensitive skin.

Emotional Stress Effects on Skin

Emotional stress is no laughing matter. Anxiety, depression, anger, and other intense emotions can significantly impact your health. When you're stressed, it causes a chemical response in your body which can result in skin problems. Increased production of stress hormones like cortisol can result in more oil production1. This influx of stress hormones and increased oil production make your skin more sensitive, reactive and prone to acne or inflammation. Stress can also cause hives and skin reactions that may differ from your occasional acne flare-up.

And while it’s understandable that a stress rash or other visible skin irritation can be troubling, we invite you to stress a little less. And tune in a little more. Specifically, let’s look at how you manage stress so we can identify and adopt some stress management tools that will ease your mind and eventually calm your skin.

Getting regular exercise, practicing self-care, sleeping enough every night, and implementing a consistent skincare routine are all excellent ways to help better manage your stress. If your anxiety is showing on your skin, you’re not alone. Our founder Kate often says you can tell how she’s feeling by how her skin looks.

DeliKate Cleanser Flatlay

If your skin seems to be reacting more sensitively these days, you may want to switch up your daily skincare routine. Start by swapping out some of your more active skincare products for more soothing ones. Our DeliKate® Soothing Cleanser was created to be part of your skincare toolkit and used on days when skin is stressed. It’s the perfect gentle, fragrance-free cleanser for nourishing dry, irritated skin on your face. With ingredients like ginger root extract and ceramides, it works to relieve visible redness while also providing your skin with a boost of hydration. Changing your routine up in times of stress can help soothe your skin faster and give it the break it needs!

Product-Inflicted Stress Effects on Skin

When you're stressed, you may find it more challenging to stay consistent with healthy habits, including sticking to your usual self-care routine. Your afternoon jog, healthy breakfast, and skincare practice are likely some of the first things you'll stop prioritizing. However, doing so can create even more stress - starting with your skin! Hydration, sleep and a healthy lifestyle all play a major role in the health of your skin2. When you de-prioritize these daily practices because of stress, it can inadvertently lead to dehydrated, dull skin. When your skin changes, it's important that your skincare products change along with it. If you've noticed that your everyday skincare isn’t quite working like it used to, then it may be time to switch up your routine - for your skin's sake!

While you may not want to switch up your entire routine, it is essential to take note of which products may be too harsh for your already-sensitive skin at the moment. Replace harsher products with more moisturizing, skin-friendly products like our DeliKate® Recovery Serum. Adding this recovery serum to your regimen will help provide long-lasting hydration, while also promoting a healthy skin barrier. With just a bit of research, you can create a gentle skincare routine that will help your skin thrive - even in the most stressful of times!

DeliKate Recovery Serum with dropper and swatch

Environmental Stress Effects on Skin

What happens when you break out in a stress rash but you don't feel stressed? You may be experiencing a different kind of stress. Specifically, environmental stress. Pollution, toxins, and other environmental factors in daily life can take a toll on our skin. And while you may feel emotionally balanced, your skin may be more irritated than ever. If you've recently moved, changed up your daily routine, or have noticed that your skin has become more sensitive or reactive lately, then it may be time to switch up your skincare regimen. Environmental factors like air pollution, dust, wind, dry weather, UV radiation, and even air conditioning can cause skin conditions. To soothe skin irritation and protect your skin against these environmental factors and the adverse side effects that come with it, use products like the DeliKate® Recovery Cream. Using this breakthrough clinical recovery cream for sensitive skin will help deliver lasting relief for stressed skin and promote a healthy skin barrier, which will protect your skin against harsh environmental factors.

DeliKate Recovery Cream with swatch

Take Note of Changes in Your Skin

If you've been taking steps to treat your skin but are still seeing severe skin reactions or additional symptoms such as red blotches, itching, shortness of breath or a fever, you should seek medical treatment. These are symptoms of a severe allergic reaction and may require medical attention.

If you are experiencing less severe symptoms, but still have redness, itching or a form of dermatitis, visit your dermatologist to learn what treatment is best for you.

The key to managing the health of your skin is simple – pay attention to it! When you're stressed, take note of how your skin feels after you apply each product in your skincare routine and determine if that product is right for your skin at this time. If your skin doesn't feel amazing after using the product, then we suggest switching over to a more sensitive skincare product that will better care for your skin through this stressful time.

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Sources:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5885122/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4082169/
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