Is your skin stressed?
Stress: A two-way street
You may have previously felt the link between the brain and the skin. Have you ever become so tense that you flushed or sweated? If that's the case, you've had an acute, short-term stress response. However, research reveals that continuous exposure to psychological or environmental stressors can have long-term impacts on your skin that go beyond flushing — and may even harm your overall health.
The brain-skin axis is a bidirectional, interrelated system that can transmit psychological stress from the brain to the skin and back. The hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, a trio of glands involved in the body's stress response, is activated by stress. Local pro-inflammatory substances including cortisol and catecholamines, which are essential hormones in the fight-or-flight stress response, can drive immune cells from the bloodstream into the skin or stimulate pro-inflammatory skin cells, can be produced as a result. Mast cells are a type of pro-inflammatory skin cell found in the brain-skin axis that responds to the hormone cortisol via receptor signalling and contributes to a variety of diseases.
So, How are you?
Not a day goes by where I don't either;
- Complain that I'm stressed out or
- Hear from my friends about their stress.
It's just (unfortunately) a standard affliction of Modern life.
One of the worst parts of it, besides feeling scatterbrained going through your to-do list and the immense levels of cortisol coursing through your body? Stress shows up on your skin. (great, right!)
"[Stress] releases hormones into the bloodstream and creates different reactions in the skin."
Stress can hit hard, especially during these unprecedented times aka Covid, the war and lack of leadership across the globe. Even if you’re meditating each morning and streaming Yoga classes by night, the effects of the current climate can affect more than your mind; stress can also take a toll on your complexion. Stress can increase cortisol levels which in turn increases inflammation and inflammation can exacerbate whatever your underlying skin conditions may be.
Some signs to realise that you skin barrier is stressed might be; redness, inflamed skin, severe dryness, dehydrated skin, irritation and itchiness, stinging or burning sensations when applying products, increased breakouts, and overall lack of glow. While the skin barrier is very resilient, it is also a very delicate balance.
When your skin does an outcry bring it back to the essentials.
- Eliminate fragrances
- Eliminate alcohols
- Eliminate synthetic dyes / colouring
- Reduce heavy make-up
Simply put: give you skin a little break and let your skin breath.
Know your skin
If your skin is red
If you are prone to rosacea pair your routine way back and add simple, hard-working solutions. First, eliminate any products that may cause irritation, and consider using a retinoid. Yes, you hear right. Retinol increases the rate of cell turnover in the skin and making it great for a variety of concerns but specifically, normalising the equilibrium of skin that’s acne or rosacea prone. Start with a low dose and a gentle version. We are using only 0.3% in our Cacay Oil + A - which is considered non-irritating by the EU Cosmetic Regulations.
In the next step, add an emollient moisturiser into your everyday skincare routine Look for a facial cream that is not too heavy or rich, one that will bring back the barrier protection of your skin.
When it comes to redness treatments, experts say serums and masks can help too. Redness is often a sign of dryness or irritation. Consider adding a soothing serum. If there’s no improvement with this after two weeks, see a board-certified dermatologist.
If you are breaking out
Acne and oily skin are the most common side effects of stress. For immediate relief, using a cleanser twice a day and avoiding over-exfoliation. While you might desire to scrub your faces, doing so can sometimes contribute to an excess of oil in the skin.
If you got dry skin
Those who have dry skin should only wash their faces once a day using a cream or oil cleanser followed by a soothing serum and moisturising cream. If your skin is still dry, try lying with an oil or balm. In addition, during the winter month, keep a humidifier in your sleep to help keep your skin moisturised.
A mix of humectants (hyaluronic acid, glycerin), skin-soothing and replenishing ingredients - This powerful, yet lightweight, serum drenches and calms dry, irritated skin with intensive moisture. It contains five types of hyaluronic acid, Hemp Seed extract, mineral-rich Glaisher Water, butterfly extract, magnolia extract and other antioxidant that is great for soothing and calming the skin.
If you got a lack of glow
For dull skin, you want to search for brightening products.