We all deal with different stresses, whether related to our jobs, our families, the cities we live in or the constant struggle to do it all. If you don’t take care of it, signs of stress can show up on your hair, skin, and nails in ways you won’t like. During moments of tension the body produces excess cortisol, often referred to as the “stress hormone”, which wreaks havoc on everything from your immune system to blood pressure. This results in acne and increased sensitivity of our skin. There are different ways stress can affect your skin and the rest of your body:
- Stress triggers inflammation inside out: Everything from bloat, stomach infections to even more serious diseases, inflammation can cause redness, acne, and if your immune system is compromised, it can sometimes lead to psoriasis, eczema, dermatitis, rosacea.
- Stress can dry out your skin: If you’re stressed, chances are you’re not drinking enough water. You might also be drinking coffee or soda, which can be dehydrating. And if your body doesn’t get the proper hydration it needs, your skin will end up feeling dry and dull.
- Stress can also make you oilier, which could lead to acne breakouts: That shift in hormone levels ― cortisol in particular ― caused by stress can also be a contributing factor to pesky acne breakouts. As a side effect, these hormones rev up activity of sebaceous glands in the skin, leading to higher than normal levels of oil, blockages in the pores and acne breakouts
- Stress can take a toll on your scalp and hair: Some people might find their hair is oilier or drier than normal during times of stress, depending on the way their bodies react to the shift in hormone levels. When your body experiences a major stressor, like a severe illness, your body stops producing hair, leading to hair loss or thinning of hair.
- Redness: When you’re stressed, blood flow increases which may also cause skin flushing or redness in the face. This also includes the tiny blood vessels under the eye are which leads to dark circles.