Perhaps one of the biggest factors in acne formation this time of year is stress. Stress has a huge impact on our bodies and our skin. When we are stressed, we produce a hormone called cortisol and a high level of cortisol leads to an increase in skin oil production and an interference in wound healing. In other words, angry breakouts which stay.
Stress doesn’t just result from over demanding bosses or unappreciating partners – it can arise from a whole host of different things in our day to day life. Not enough sleep, eating something our body didn’t like (the gut and the skin have a hotline to each other) and, most commonly, failing to have enough enjoyment in life.
Winter has a huge impact on our mood and energy levels (we make less melatonin and serotonin in winter – lack of these hormones makes us want to hibernate) and less sunlight can put our circadian rhythm (the internal timer which controls A LOT of functions in our brain and body) on BST and make everything is just meh. There’s a lot of science in winter sadness. In the UK, about 3% of the population are estimated to suffer from seasonal affective disorder (SAD), an illness which prevents those affected from functioning normally and about 20% of us experience a milder version called “subsyndromal Sad” or “winter blues” (I though this was an Elvis song).
When you’re feeling like this, your skin will show it (and you know it). So what can you do?
Roll up our free winter breakout cure!
First - take time to make time for friends and family, watch that Netflix series, get enough sleep, go for run/walk/crawl and go find the enjoyment in life. Cut back on the negative self-talk (this is so hard to do) and practice some daily gratitude.
Second - look at buying a SAD light (you can get them quite cheap) or even better, perhaps a SAD alarm clock (this wakes you up gently with light) to help reset your bodies natural cycle. (We believe this so much that in our 28 Day Skin office we have SAD lights in the ceiling to give us natural daylight while we work).
Recognising that feeling down in the winter is a chemical (rather than purely emotional) response by the body is a good thing – it means that you can also recognise that by taking physical steps you can help reduce and remove that feeling. If you feel happy, your skin will feel happy.