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Let's be honest: stress is a fact of life.
Whether it be at work or at home, most guys experience some level of stress on a near daily basis.
No big deal right? We learn to deal with it and move on.
But what about your skin? I bet you didn't know that the anxiety of modern life could be having a pretty nasty effect on the health of your skin. If you don't know how to deal with it, you could success from some serious break outs and complexion issues.
Don't worry - in today's article, we're breaking out the different effects stress can have on your skin and what you can do to prevent anxiety taking its toll.
Can stress and anxiety affect men's skin?
To answer that question, let’s think about the connection between the skin and the brain. A simple example of this is thinking about what happens when you get embarrassed - you blush, right? Or how about when you get so nervous you start to sweat (and need a high-quality all-natural deodorant)?
Sweating and blushing are both acute temporary stress responses from the sympathetic nervous system, which is where our fight or flight response originates in the brain.
The sympathetic nervous system is activated when the amygdala, the almond-shaped part of the brain responsible for emotional responses and processing, sends a signal to the hypothalamus.
When the sympathetic nervous system is activated, the body releases adrenaline and cortisol. When you’re threatened, adrenaline brings extra blood to your muscles and sharpens your senses so that you are ready to deal with potential threats.
Cortisol increases energy, aids tissue repair by increasing blood flow, and focuses the body on the task at hand, shutting down non-essential tasks.
The effects of adrenaline and cortisol on the body in a short-term stressful situation where you are actually under threat are beneficial - they help you either confront the threat head-on or get away as quickly as possible.
When chronic stress is constantly triggering your sympathetic nervous system, that’s when the problems arise. Your body always being in a state of low alert can have terrible effects on all systems of your body, including your skin.
How do stress hormones affect men's skin?
It shouldn’t surprise you to hear that stress hormones can affect your skin. Hormones were responsible for the first time your skin may have been less than amazing, right?
We’re talking about puberty.
Hormones were responsible for making your skin break out in pimples if that was a problem for you - and stress hormones, (specifically cortisol) can do the same thing.
Cortisol can trigger oil production in the skin, and excess oil production can lead to clogged pores and acne, and even bacne. Something about the release of stress hormones can also trigger hives.
Since stress hormones exacerbate inflammation, stress can also aggravate existing skin conditions that are caused by and worsened by inflammation. Eczema, dermatitis, and psoriasis can all become worse when you’re dealing with too much stress.
Stress can even lead to dry skin, especially if you’re sweating a lot because cortisol affects the way skin retains moisture through the skin barrier. If you’re itching and dry all over your body due to stress, a quality all-natural body moisturizer could be a lifesaver (and skin saver).
How else can stress and anxiety affect men's skin?
It’s not just the direct effects of stress hormones that can hurt a man’s skin. Some of the habits and behaviors that happen when you’re stressed out can also end up hurting your skin.
Stress can make you lose sleep, and you know that shows on your face. Puffy eye bags and dark under-eye circles are sure signs of a stressful sleepless night. A serum for dark eye circles and puffy lids can help clear that up quick as can be.
Lack of sleep can also make signs of aging worse, such as wrinkles and fine lines. Of course, if you’re stressed, you might be holding your face in a position that increases wrinkles too, like furrowing your brow or frowning.
Anxious habits can hurt your skin, too. If you’re anxious when stressed, you might pick at your skin or bite the skin of your lips. Basically, nothing good comes to your skin from stress.
How can I restore my skin from stress?
If your skin is showing signs of being affected by stress, there are things you can do to improve the situation. Number one of course would be reducing your stress level!
Meditate, exercise (yoga is great for stress), sleep more, and change your lifestyle so that you’re not on the verge of a breakdown.
Seek therapy for your issues (everyone loves a man in therapy). Try some breathing exercises to help you relax. And don’t forget to stay hydrated!
Looking for more topical solutions? Besides what we’ve already mentioned, having a skincare routine, in general, can help with stress management. Skincare is self-care, and self-care is a time for relaxation and decompression from stress.
Our skincare products are made with all-natural vegan ingredients that won’t aggravate the inflammation present in stressed-out skin. They also feel and smell great, so you really feel relaxed and pampered while applying them.
We’ve even got a men's skincare routine starter kit for dudes who haven’t started a skincare routine yet and feel stressed at the thought of choosing the right products.
Well, all that knowledge about how to fix your stressed skin must have relaxed you considerably - your skin is already looking better!