Reducing stress is essential to skin health but what are the effects of stress on your skin and what can you do to reduce stress? Excessive exposure to stress can, to say the least, cause signs of premature aging on your skin. But did you know that it can lead to gray hair? Additionally, cortisol (the stress hormone) can lead to more oil production and consequently, acne. Here are a few things you can do to reduce your stress levels:
Have Fun - Engage in activities that make you smile and laugh. Think about your favorite activity (for me it’s dancing), are you stressed while doing it? Of course not! So, do more of that and find other activities that make you feel relieved of all the things that stress you out. Seriously, make time for it, schedule it, have Siri remind you…whatever it takes! At least 4 times a week I like to take a walk around my neighborhood (weather permitting). The people here always make me smile and sometimes laugh uncontrollably. 😂
Decrease Toxins - Namely drugs and alcohol. 👀 Ok yes, sometimes after a long day a glass of wine or a cocktail is exactly what you need. However, too many can have an adverse effect. Causing additional problems that lead to stress. Minimize those toxins burdening your body and in turn, decrease your stress.
Nourish your body - Eating a whole food, plant-based diet is the best way to give your body the essential nutrients it needs to eliminate metabolic stress. Load up on vitamin rich fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and whole grains to satisfy those essential nutrients.
Sleep – 💤 Studies have shown that getting 7-9 hours of sleep per night is ideal. Easier said than done is what I say most nights! However, I know it’s important so here are some helpful tips:
- Use Lavender, chamomile or peppermint oil in a diffuser to reduce stress before bed.
- Similarly, drink a cup of lavender, chamomile or peppermint tea to wind you down for a good night’s sleep.
- Our Chasing Calm Toner has organic lavender. Use in your skin care routine right before bed to destress and prepare you for a restful sleep.
- Putting your phone away 1-2 hours before bedtime is the best option but if you simply can’t: Take advantage of your phone’s features by using the scheduled ‘do not disturb’ element or turning on ‘night shift’ which automatically shifts the colors of your display to the warmer end of the color spectrum after dark. Which can lead to a better night’s sleep.
Set Boundaries- If you’re anything like me, no is the hardest word to say…especially to friends and family members. It can be really tough to prioritize yourself and set limits when you are known for being the helpful friend or dependable sibling. Nevertheless, in order to reduce stress, you must set boundaries. To ease into it, start with something small like insisting someone knocks before entering your room or office. Or, having one night to yourself to do whatever you please.
Honorable mention – talk to your therapist (which is super important if you have one), breathing exercises, yoga and meditation.
The takeaway for healthy skin; prioritizing the reduction of stress in your life will not only lower your anxiety but the positive effects will be reflected in your overall skin health.
Your skin will thank you!