It’s no secret we’re far more stressed than women of generations passed; and while it’s great that we’re in a position to be responsible for our own finances, career paths, and relationships, the added stress it subsequently brings is unfortunately taking its toll on our skin.
The recent Neutrogena® One Less Stress Survey revealed that the everyday stresses experienced by women are resulting in breakouts. But the question is, which came first – the pimple or the stress?
According to the survey, 74 percent of women reported an increase in breakouts when they were stressed out, but the majority of women surveyed also revealed that they felt insecure or self-conscious when they had pimples or acne – kick-starting a ‘stress cycle’ that resulted in higher levels of stress and anxiety and, in turn, increased breakouts.
So if stress causes pimples, and pimples cause stress, what’s the answer?
Well, to start you can take some time out from your too-hectic lifestyle (there will be time if you make the time!) to give your mind, body and soul some much-needed TLC. Try these simple steps to stress less:
• Switch off your email, home phone and mobile phone for a while (the world won’t end if you’re non-contactable for a couple of hours!) and take the time to relax and unwind – totally uninterrupted.
• Try to go for a 30-minute walk each day. Regular exercise helps to circulate oxygen through your body, increases endorphins (the natural chemicals responsible for making you feel happy and relaxed), and does wonders for your complexion.
• Take 10 minutes in the morning and evening to sit quietly and focus on your breathing. It will ensure you begin and end your day with a more calm and clear mindset.
It’s also important to look after your skin from within. For a flawless face from the inside, out try these top tips:
• Up your intake of skin-friendly foods. These include fresh fruit and vegetables, fish (high in complexion-clearing omegas), and nuts, such as hazelnuts or almonds, which are perfect for that extra boost of vitamin E.
• Drink at least six to eight glasses of water a day to help eliminate toxins and cleanse your skin from impurities.
• Avoid smoking and excessive amounts of alcohol as they can dehydrate your skin and make you more prone to premature lines and wrinkles.
And while lifestyle changes are a sure fire way to decrease stress and increase the state of your skin, there are a few skin care products that could be seriously helping your cause.
bh loves: Clinique Acne Solutions Cleansing Foam, Murad Outsmart Blemish-Clarifying Treatment, (available from murad.com.au), Neutrogena Visibly Clear Spot Proofing Oil-Free Moisturiser, Neutrogena Visibly Clear Light Therapy Spot Treatments
What do you do to combat stress? Does stress have a direct effect on your skin?