How does stress effect me?
Stress happens to everyone, but since you can’t avoid your job, bills, or life, the best thing to do is learn to manage the stress. This includes eating healthy, exercising regularly, getting enough sleep, and taking care of yourself in general. If you don’t, signs of stress can show up on your hair, skin, and nails in ways you won’t like. Here are some evil things stress does to your appearance, along with some helpful tips.
1. Under-Eye Bags: Tomorrow’s to-do list can weigh on your mind, keeping you from getting enough beauty sleep. This can cause fluid to pool below your lower eyelid area, and what you end up with is a puffy mess in the a.m. Stomach sleepers, bad news: You can expect the puffiness of your under-eye bags to be even worse because of gravity.
Prevent and Shrink Puffiness: Get at least eight hours of sleep. Since the light from your smartphone’s screen simulates sunlight, shut off any electronic devices an hour before you go to sleep. Use your downtime to make yourself a cup of caffeine-free chamomile tea, to help calm and relax you before bed.
If you still wake up with puffy eyes in the morning, hold the back of a cold spoon (pop it in the fridge so it gets chilly) up to your under-eye area and massage it from the inner to the outer corner of your eye to jump start the fluid’s drainage.
2. Dry, Flaky 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 (and looking) like crepe paper.
Look Dewy and Fresh-Faced: First and foremost, drink a lot of water — eight glasses (or more!) each day. You can also down some green tea for a boost of healthy antioxidants and eat foods that have a high water content (fruits and veggies like cucumbers, tomatoes, beets, and celery are 80 to 90 percent water).
For a quick hydration fix, use a serum that contains hyaluronic acid, an ingredient that naturally occurs in your body and holds 1,000 times its weight in water. It even pulls moisture from the air into the skin, instantly hydrating it and leaving you with a gorgeous glow,
3. Acne: Stress causes skin issues to flare up regardless of what you’re prone to, whether it’s acne, psoriasis, or eczema. When it comes to acne, stress releases cortisol, which can throw off the other hormones in your body and cause breakouts on your face or body. Stress can also disrupt the balance between the good and bad bacteria in your gut.
Say Good-Bye to Blemishes: Practice deep breathing (take a big breath that fills your belly, hold for few seconds, and exhale slowly through your mouth) to calm any anxiety. Drinking a lot of water and eating a well-balanced diet are important too, since your body can’t handle stress well if it’s not properly nourished. Fruits, vegetables, and high-quality proteins like grass-fed meats are also crucial (they keep a balance between the good and bad bacteria in your gut), as is cutting down on sugar.
4. Rashes and Hives: Both are both caused by a dysbiosis, aka an imbalance in your gut. They crop up when stress takes over and too much bad bacteria outweighs the good.
Calm you’re Skin: Breathing exercises can help minimize the chances of getting a rash or hives when you’re stressed, but to keep both at bay, consult your doctor. Ask if you should be taking medical-grade probiotics to balance out the good and bad bacteria in your gut.
5. Fine Lines: Constantly making certain facial expressions, like furrowing your brows when you’re stressed or pursing your lips, can lead to deeper wrinkles in these areas over time.
Prevent and Blur Lines: Be mindful of making certain unconscious facial expressions when you have a lot on your plate, especially when you’re sitting at your desk. Need help training your muscles to relax? If you tend to furrow your brow, put a piece of clear tape in between your arches when you’re at work. That way when you scrunch up your brow muscle, the tape will crinkle, reminding you to relax it. If pursing your lips is what you struggle with, do the same above your upper lip. After a while, you’ll learn to drop the habit. Because, let’s be real, how long can you tolerate wearing face tape in public? To minimize the look of any lines you may have now, pat on a silicone-based formula that temporarily fills in fine lines, so your makeup goes
6. Deep Grooves in Your Nails: Vertical lines are common on nails and usually are linked to aging and, in some cases, a lack in certain vitamins, but they’re harmless. Horizontal grooves and ridges that run side to side, on the other hand, are called Beau’s lines, and they tend to appear when the body is compromised from stress and typically mean there is something more serious going on in your system.
Handle It: If you see these linear lines, make an appointment with your doctor ASAP, since they can be sometimes caused by diabetes, zinc deficiency, syphilis, and vascular disease. In the meantime, do your best to zen out by taking a yoga class or meditating.