10 Ways Stress Affects Your Skin (and the Natural Skin Care Products That Really Help)

Aimee Werner

Posted on December 05 2018

It’s official. The holidays are in full swing and for many of us that means so is stress! With presents to buy, kids to care for, jobs to work, and holiday parties to attend, the pressure of all those responsibilities can wreak havoc on your skin.  

Stress causes a chemical reaction inside your body – triggering hormones to go haywire - so your holiday breakout probably isn’t because you’re indulging in too many sweets. It’s most likely because your body is flooding itself with stress hormones like cortisol. Cortisol not only causes acne, it can also contribute to aging and skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis, and rosacea.  

While stress during this time of year is almost unavoidable, there are things you can do to minimize the effects of stress on skin and hair – so you’ll look holiday glam instead of holiday glum!  

Here are some of the common ways stress affects the skin, beauty, and body (especially during the holidays) and the natural skin care products that’ll keep you looking picture-perfect. We’ll even share the perfect stress-reducing night routine to add to your holiday skin care regimen to keep you looking flawless and fresh-faced!  

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1. Chilly Temps = Stressed-Out Skin

Winter doesn’t technically start until December 21 (who’s counting anyway?), but for a lot of us, the cold front has already set in and it’s majorly drying out your face. What was once soft, supple, glowing skin, is now dry, flakey, and chapped - ouch!  

You can still be the belle of the holiday ball, but your skin will need a little quenching TLC.  

A Burst of Moisture: Give your face a rich, hydrating treatment with our Replenishing Day Cream. Apply it in the morning after you’ve cleansed your face, and voilà! You are prepped for the whole day. This moisturizer delivers restorative, anti-aging ingredients that work as hard as you do. Yes, please!  

A Little Spritz: Hydrating Face Mist is our not-so-secret, secret weapon. This little bottle fits perfectly inside a purse, so you always have access to refreshing moisture. Take your skin from tired and dry to energized and ready to take on the world with just one spray.  

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2. Breakouts Abound

When your in-laws are in town for the holidays that’s reason enough to stress, but add on your list of other to-dos and you’re bound for a breakout (thanks, stress hormones). To treat this, use gentle, natural skin care products that’ll soothe your acne and allow it to heal.  

Start Fresh: Cleansing your skin should always be the first step in your skin care routine. Our Crème Cleanser won’t upset your skin’s delicate pH balance; and with ingredients like rose flower oil, amino acids, and our special blend of organic goodness, you’ll be one step closer to clear skin. Now strike a pose! 

Reduce Inflammation: Ditch the harsh drug store face masks that have harmful, irritating chemicals, and opt for a natural skin care routine that’ll help soothe your breakout. Our Nourishing Dew Mask not only boosts skin’s moisture, but it also reduces the appearance of fine lines and inflammation.  

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3. Too Stressed to Sleep  

Each holiday season, we tell ourselves that we’ll take it easy and get our beauty sleep, but alas, stress takes over. When you don’t get enough sleep, your body produces more stress hormones and this can pull you into a vicious cycle making it harder to fall asleep at night. Cue the pesky undereye bags and dark circles - ugh!  

Extra Baggage: Under eye bags are actually common as your skin ages, but inadequate sleep due to stress can also contribute to why you’re looking a little puffy around the eye area. To combat that, use our Lifting Eye Mask enriched with peptides and active botanicals that’ll make your eye area look lifted, refreshed, and firmed after just one treatment.  

Dark Circles: Our Repairing Eye Serum is the perfect natural skin care product to reduce the appearance of dark circles and revive elasticity to the delicate skin around those dazzling eyes. Here’s to looking at you! 

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4. Dehydration Disruption   

“Studies have shown that being just half a liter dehydrated can increase your cortisol levels,” says Amanda Carlson, RD. When you’re stressed, it’s easy to forget how important it is to stay hydrated.  

Your skin and hair crave water. So drink up, and don’t forget to use a high-quality moisturizer!  

Intensive Moisture: Treat your face to a natural skin care product made of a  sumptuous blend of potent, anti-age fighters and antioxidant-rich moisturizers… all while you sleep! Our Recovering Night Cream works overnight, so you wake up feeling refreshed and as beautiful on the outside as you are on the inside. 

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5. Redness Caused by Stress  

Emotional stress can cause skin issues that are triggered by hormonal changes in our bodies in response to stressful situations (like battling the mall parking lot during the holidays). So, if you’ve ever gotten stress hives or just as red as Rudolph’s nose, take a deep breath!  

In the Red: Our Restoring Face Oil is wonderful for anyone looking to get rid of redness. It’s fast-absorbing, delivering restorative and soothing ingredients like black currant seed oil, apricot kernel oil, and organic evening primrose oil. Just one massage into the skin and this face oil will be the newest addition to your natural skin care arsenal.   

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6. Yes, Stress Even Affects Your Nails

Your fingernails might know you’re stressed before you do! When you’re under stress because of illness, injury, or infection, your nails may stop growing. That’s because your body is focusing all of its energy on healing you, so nails take a backseat.  

Stay Strong: Try using an all-natural nail and cuticle oil to strengthen and revitalize. And don’t forget our Rice Milk Hand Remedy! It’s the perfect addition to your oil treatment to keep your hands looking manicure-ready all year long.  

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7. No More Glow

When you’re worried, your body’s sympathetic nervous system turns on, triggering the fight or flight response. When this happens, your body shifts the majority of its circulation to your vital organs (like your heart).  

And when your blood is pulled away from your face and to your organs... you’re left with less color and dull-looking skin. But don’t worry about making an appointment for a spray tan (as if you needed another thing to do). Treat yourself like the god or goddess you are with an at-home bronze.  

It’s Easy: Our Coconut Milk+Verbena Self Tanner is the best way to achieve a streak-free, natural-looking tan. Just one application of this body butter infused with self tanner and natural skin care firming ingredients and you’ll look like you just got back from a stress-free Caribbean vacation.   

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8. Stress Makes You Smell 

Sorry, ladies and gents: stress sweat smells worse than regular sweat. Not just that, but you also produce more sweat when you’re under pressure than when you’re not. So, if you’re already wearing extra layers due to cold weather and you’re stressed, think twice before walking out the door without applying deodorant. 

Natural Skin Care Is Always Best: So many deodorants on the market these days are chock-full of harmful chemicals. Protect your delicate underarms and prevent sweating and hair growth with our Deodorant Gel with Hair Inhibitor. It has organic and natural skin care ingredients, is aluminum-free, quick-drying, and reduces hair growth with chaparral extract. Oh, and it smells incredible. Beat that, drugstore deodorant!  

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9. Watch Out for Holiday Stress Frowns  

Your face does the talking for you and it’s letting the world know that you’re stressed out. Cortisol, one of the stress chemicals released from your body when you’re under pressure, causes collagen loss. When collagen is depleted, it leads to less skin elasticity and tightness, exposing fine lines and wrinkles. These lines and wrinkles are exacerbated when you’re tense, frowning, or pursing your lips, so try to be aware of your expressions when experiencing stressful situations. 

Prep your skin for the day ahead with a natural skin care product that’ll reduce the effects of stress on your face and have you smiling in no time.  

It’s Prime Time: Breathe easy knowing it’ll be New Year’s soon! In the meantime, try using our Botanical Primer make with Bakuchiol, a 100% natural substitute for retinol – without the drying, redness, and UV issues. Apply after your moisturizer to minimize pores, even skin tone, and reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines.  

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10. Stressed? So Is Your Hair

According to Mayo Clinic, there are several ways stress can cause hair loss. Sometimes stress causes hair follicles to go into a resting phase and they fall out all at once in the shower or when brushing your hair. Another cause of hair loss is when your body is so stressed your immune system attacks the hair.  

Whatever the situation may be, it’s always recommended to consult your doctor, because hair loss can be an indication of a health problem. In most cases hair loss can be stopped, so take heart. Here are a few products you can try to maximize what you’re working with for the perfect holiday coif:  

Thicken & Volumize: Try cleansing your hair with a thickening shampoo and conditioner. If you can, avoid washing hair too frequently to minimize more loss (two times a week should do the trick). Once your hair is clean and towel-dried, use a volumizing mousse. Avoid using heat products like hair dryers, flat irons, and curling irons that will further damage thin hair.  

Whish is dedicated to the discovery of natural ingredients that enable intelligent choices for your skin. Shop our natural skin care products as seen on broadcast television and in publications such as People, Marie Claire, and US Weekly. Welcome to a gentle new world!