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Stressing over a deadline at work? Or tensed because of your relationship? Are you worried about your finances? No matter what kind of stress you are experiencing, it is simply not good news. A tensed brain can not only affect your mental functioning but also your skin! 

Therefore, your skin has a way of showing major signs of stress and you can feel it too.

Whether you have chronic stress or a severe episode or mental pressure and anxiety, this can negatively affect your skin and even flare up any existing conditions such as eczema, psoriasis and acne.

According to researchers, anxiety and mental stress is affecting around 34% of the population in Pakistan.

Your Brain & Skin Are Connected!

Did you know that when you become stressed or tense, your brain releases certain hormones such as cortisol also known as ‘stress hormone’. It is released from your adrenal glands. 

The release of this stress chemical in your body has a very important impact on your skin such as causing overproduction of oil by your skin and premature aging. This ultimately leads to acne breakouts, skin sagging and wrinkling.

how stress affects on your skin

7 Surprising Effects Of Mental Stress On Skin


  • Stress Affects Your Daily Skincare 

As stress can make you feel miserable and preoccupied at times, it is not surprising that you may tend to forget or even skip your skincare routine. 

Whether your skin type is dry, oily or sensitive; you need to wash, moisturize and protect your skin everyday. Otherwise, you may experience clogged pores, acne, fine lines and rashes.

  • Existing Skin Conditions Become Worse

For those of you suffering from psoriasis, rosacea or eczema, mental pressure may make your condition worse.  As your body releases a stress hormone called cortisol, this causes inflammation. Hence, a sensitive skin becomes more sensitive.

  • Too Much Oil Production By Your Skin

As mentioned above, your body, under too much mental pressure releases the stress hormone, cortisol. This hormone causes your skin’s oil glands to produce excess sebum (skin’s natural oil). As a result, you see acne, clogged pores and blemishes.

A study was conducted in 2017,to find the connection between stress and acne in female medical students in Jeddah,Saudi Arabia. The results revealed that stress does cause acne.

  • Hives Or Stress Rash

Generally, you may notice raised red bumps on your skin during an episode of anxiety or emotional strain. It is also known as hives or ‘stress rash’. This rash may either look like tiny dots to large red bumps appearing on:

  • Arms
  • Face
  • Chest
  • Neck

Moreover, many patients have reported that their ‘stress rash’ causes itching or tingling feelings.

stress rush

  • Your Hair Color Goes Grey

Scientists and researchers in a latest study state that too much and too frequent activity of your brain’s sympathetic nervous system can destroy skin cells that give your hair their natural color. The loss of these cells, called melanocytes, leads to hair greying.

  • Skin Becomes Dry & Dull

You may skip a goodnight sleep or not drink enough water to keep your hydration levels up when you are going through emotional pressure. This is not only unhealthy for your skin but can also trigger more stress in case of poor sleep and insufficient water intake.

  • Dark Circles (Panda Eyes!)

A stressful lifestyle means improper and insufficient sleep, especially at night and this can lead to a number of issues such as dark circles and rings around your eyes. Moreover, mental pressure and stress can discourage you to keep your hydration levels up. This is another factor behind puffy eyes and dark circles

Stress Is Not A Necessary Factor

It is important to note that it is not necessary that emotional or physical stress necessarily cause a new skin disease or skin condition. However, mental strain and anxiety can disrupt your internal biological balance. Thus, making your chronic skin issue from bad to worse.

7 Proven Ways To Avoid Negative Side Effects Of Stress On Your Skin


  • Get A Hobby

Love listening to music? Do you enjoy cooking in your leisure time? Read your favourite book or novel, listen to podcasts when not doing any professional activity. Hence, indulge in any activity that brings you joy and relaxes your mind.

  • Do Not Skip Your Skincare Routine

As mentioned earlier, stress can interfere with your daily routine and this also means your daily skincare routine. No matter how stressful your day becomes, use a simple cleanser to wash your face, apply an oil-free moisturizer and wear a powerful sunscreen to protect your skin when going outdoors.

  • When Stress Takes A Toll Take A Nap

Feeling anxious or experiencing mental pressure during the day or at night? Take a quick nap and put everything away for a while! Also, try to get a sleep of at least 7-8 hours every night to boost your mood and help you support brain health and good memory. It always works!

  • Become Active

Exercise and physical fitness is essential for all the right reasons! Cycling, jogging, brisk walking, yoga, and even dancing can help you to fight off tension and its effects on your skin. Regular exercise releases endorphins or happy chemicals that trigger feelings of happiness and positivity in your body.

Tips for Stress Management

  • Practice Stress Management 

You can effectively take control of your anxiety and stress levels with some of the most popular stress management measures such as:

  • Meditation
  • Deep breathing
  • Journaling
  • Mindfulness
  • Spend Time With The Right People!

There is nothing like a good family support system to help you overcome the challenges in your life and distress. Talk to your family and friends about your issues and share with them, discuss with them all your fears and concerns.

  • Relax! Nothing Is Impossible

It may seem like it is the end of the world in difficult times, but be assured that it is not!

No matter how tough a situation you are facing whether at work or at home, learn to relax and calm down. Have faith in yourself and your abilities.

Final Word On Mental Stress

Stress is more common than your imagination and has negative effects on your entire health. It is not necessary to experience skin conditions as a result of stress, however, the cortisol in your body can cause your skin to react strangely.

It is important to find out the root cause of your anxiety and pressure if you want to avoid the unwanted consequences. 

You & Your Skin Doctor Can Save Your Skin

You can find the best dermatologist and skin specialist at Glow & Go clinics Lahore and Islamabad if you notice skin conditions flaring up or getting worse. Join hands with Glow & Go to reach your skin goals and look your best come rain or come shine.

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