The Active Edit

Stress and Your Skin

published on 28 Jul, 2022

Stress and Skin have quite the connection.

With a bidirectional dialogue between the two, they each are stimulated to respond in times of elevated stress. When stress levels rise, our skin response can heighten causing a cascade of conditions. You may have experienced a dysfunction within your barrier of heat, tingling or redness. For some breakouts are ever more present with persistent redness, or, a devitalised skin that seems to of lost its glow. This is due to sophisticated communication through our HPA axis. 

It all starts with our hypothalamus, an area of our brain that is responsible for hormone production and the regulation of homeostasis and function within our body. Our hypothalamus helps to regulate our body temperature, our wake and sleep cycle (known as our circadian rhythm) and our emotions.

Our hypothalamus is connected to our pituitary gland which then sends signals to our adrenal glands releasing hormones, such as stress hormones, Adrenaline and Cortisol. Not only does our body consist of having an HPA axis (Hypothalamic Pituitary Adrenal Axis), but so does our skin. Our skin is now understood that in times of stress, it can produce stress hormones such as cortisol that will then lead to inflammation within our skin.

With stress being ever so present, breakouts are a common concern among adults. They show up taking residence and tend to overstay their welcome. Inflammation runs deep and healing time, well…it takes time. As inflammation sets in and healing time slows, the skin is then affected with post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) aka scarring. This is where utilising a biomimetic ologopeptide such as CAREGEN can support brightening and lightening the skin providing a more even-toned complexion. Insert Niacinamide to reduce inflammatory effects in acne and provide exceptional service for many other skin concerns such as ageing, dullness and texture - an all-rounder powerhouse ingredient!

You may have heard of free radicals and of their unforgiving nature of wreaking havoc on our skin cells. A by-product of stress, oxidative stress has the ability to cause an inflammatory response stimulating a group of enzymes that break down our collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid – the proteins responsible for keeping our skin plump, supported and radiant. 

Antioxidants, vitamins and peptides will collaborate with key actives to support the structural changes of oxidative stress and inflammation on ageing. Kakadu Plum is a proven antioxidant quenching free radical damage within skin cells. Stay C 50, a stabilised Vit C neutralises free radical damage, as well as targets blemishes, pimples, inflammation and hyperpigmentation within the skin.

It is no surprise that with stress comes skin sensitivity. With heightened levels, our barrier weakens and for some, eczema and psoriasis flare-ups are a sign of a strong connection between our brain and skin. To address skin sensitivity, let us introduce Panthanol. With the benefits of improving skin barrier function, wound healing, anti-inflammatory and retaining moisture within the skin, this cosmeceutical ingredient is a saviour.

A hero ingredient found within our Dermalist AllSerum to support skin stress is NeurophrolineTM. A potent seed extract calms skin redness and inflammation, breaking down cortisol production within our skin cells by 70% within 2 hours of application. 

To further support our body and skin during times of stress, leaning into our rest and digest mode will significantly help to begin the process of reducing cortisol. Daily stress-reducing practices such as something as simple as deep breathing helps to switch from our sympathetic nervous system to our parasympathetic nervous system (rest and digest). Partner these practices with advanced targeted stress-reducing cosmeceuticals, we are in a great position to see the calm come through with radiant, happy glowing skin.

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