The Hidden Effects: 5 Ways Stress Physically Manifests on Your Face

Whilst stress itself does not directly kill a person, there's a growing bank of evidence to show how it can have serious health consequences that, if left untreated, can ultimately lead to death. Chronic and unmanaged stress can have a negative impact on the body's systems, including the cardiovascular, immune, and digestive systems. 

I'm talking from experience as someone who had chronic bouts of Crohn's Disease in the early noughties alleviated by high dose vitamin C, probiotic foods, vitamin D, meditation and interestingly, pregnancy.

Stress can contribute to the development or exacerbation of various health conditions, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, weakened immune system, digestive disorders, and mental health disorders like depression and anxiety. These conditions can increase the risk of serious complications and death if not properly managed. Additionally, stress can also affect a person's behaviour and lifestyle choices. Stress may (well) lead to unhealthy coping mechanisms such as excessive drinking, smoking, drug abuse, or poor eating habits, which can further increase the risk of health issues and mortality. 

It is important to recognise and manage stress in a healthy way to prevent its negative impacts on physical and mental health. Seeking support from healthcare professionals, practicing stress reduction techniques (e.g., exercise, meditation, deep breathing, talking therapy, good friendships, a sense of community), maintaining a balanced lifestyle, and seeking help when needed can all contribute to better stress management and overall well-being.

According to the Mental Health Foundation, stress is a very common problem in the UK, with 74% of people feeling overwhelmed or unable to cope at some point in the past year. Some statistics related to stress in the UK include:

1. Work-related stress: According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), in 2020/2021, there were an estimated 828,000 workers in the UK suffering from work-related stress, depression, or anxiety. This accounted for 17.9 million working days lost due to these conditions.

2. Stress and mental health: In a survey conducted by the Office for National Statistics in 2020, 52% of adults in the UK reported that their well-being had been negatively affected by stress and worry as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

3. Impact on physical health: The effects of stress can also extend to physical health. A study by the British Heart Foundation found that 46% of UK adults felt stressed during the COVID-19 pandemic, with 14% reporting an increase in chest pain or tightness due to stress.

4. Impact on younger generations: Stress is also a significant issue among young people. The National Union of Students (NUS) reported that 87% of students in the UK experienced stress, with 25% stating that they had sought help for their mental health due to stress-related issues.

5. Financial stress: Money worries can be a significant source of stress. According to a survey by the Money and Mental Health Policy Institute, around 30% of UK adults with mental health problems are in problem debt, highlighting the strong correlation between financial stress and mental well-being.

People are noticing the effects on their faces and are searching for products or routines to help decrease stress-related effects on their face.

Stress can without doubt cause various skin issues such as acne breakouts, dullness, wrinkles, and inflammation.

We look for products or techniques that can soothe and rejuvenate our skin, reduce redness or discolouration, and promote relaxation. The Skin Elixir Red Light Therapy Facial Radiance Wand is brilliant at alleviating stress. To follow are the top 5 ways stress shows up on the face.

Skincare routines that incorporate calming ingredients, mindfulness techniques, or facial massages are commonly sought after to alleviate stress and improve overall skin health and bring a sense of stillness. Read How to develop a skincare routine when you don't have time

 1. Acne: Stress can cause the body to produce more oil, which can clog pores and lead to acne breakouts on the face. Stress-induced acne may appear as whiteheads, blackheads, or inflammatory pimples.

2. Wrinkles and fine lines: Chronic stress can accelerate the aging process by breaking down collagen and elastin in the skin. This can lead to the formation of wrinkles, fine lines, and sagging skin, especially around the eyes and forehead.

3. Dull and tired-looking skin: Stress can affect blood circulation, leading to a lack of oxygen and nutrients reaching the skin cells. This can result in dull, pale, and fatigued-looking skin, making a person appear older or less vibrant.

4. Dark circles and under-eye bags: Lack of sleep or disrupted sleep patterns due to stress can cause blood vessels under the eyes to dilate and result in dark circles. Puffiness and under-eye bags may also be more pronounced due to fluid retention caused by stress.

5. Skin conditions flare-ups: Stress can exacerbate existing skin conditions, such as eczema, psoriasis, rosacea, or dermatitis. Inflammatory reactions triggered by stress may cause redness, itching, rashes, or flaky patches on the face.

Skin Elixir products are all designed to fight the effects of stress on the face.