Being Stressed Affects Your Appearance

There are many ways that stress can affect your body. If you really panic, you can shut down the immune system completely. (If you experience any such symptoms, see a doctor immediately.) But if you’re here for more futile reasons – like how to prevent stress pimples, premature graying, and patchy hair loss – then read on.

The healthy way to minimize stress is to live with consistently healthy practices: plenty of sleep, hydration, a regulated work routine, not being a fan of the Minnesota Vikings, etc.

If you don’t minimize the tension, the effects of stress can often have lasting consequences on your face and hair. So for the sake of vanity – but more importantly, for your own physical, mental, and emotional health – here are six arguments to relax you a little … or a lot.

Stress can cause hair to fall out

Stress can trigger alopecia areata, which causes spots of baldness all over your body. Stress can also trigger a tick where you pluck your beard or hair out of bad habit. This condition is called trichotillomania. Maybe you’ve noticed a buddy with a stressful job who has little spots on the sides of his beard. It’s probably not genetic – it’s the result of her compulsively picking from one spot, regularly plucking her hair. Usually, this hair can grow back, but it shouldn’t even fall out in the first place: be very careful with your own habitual reactions to daily stress, to avoid a similar parsimony.

Stress can also cause telogen effluvium which is usually the result of something more traumatic, rather than gradual.

Also Read: The Effects of Stress on Your Body

It also gray your hair

The effect of stress on hair loss is usually temporary and irregular. This is unlikely to accelerate permanent male pattern baldness. However, it permanently affects the color of your hair, preventing or stopping the production of melanocytes in your hair follicles. This means that the hair is no longer producing pigment, so it turns gray (or white, if all the pigment is lost). If you are suffering from something traumatic, you may experience a patch or strand of white hair. This is the result of stress and loss of pigment. But gradual and constant stress will speed up the otherwise regular graying process.

Stress gives you pimples

Stress changes your hormones. It increases the production of cortisol, which increases the oil production of your skin. All of this leads to a greater likelihood of clogged pores. Stress can also increase the amount of acne-causing bacteria in the body, which may require a prescription for high-dose antibiotics from your dermatologist.

It dries up the skin, too

Depending on how your body reacts to the increased production of cortisol, you could also end up with overly dry skin. Cortisol can interfere with skin elasticity and water retention, dehydrating your dermis. If so, apply a facial oil known to rehydrate cells.

And it ages you

Stress can slow down your sleep, tire your eyes, frown, etc. All that extra wear and tear is not good for the appearance of youth: you will accelerate the signs of aging that should have waited another 10 to 20 years to appear. You can expect crow’s feet at the corners of your eyes, fine lines on your forehead, blotchy skin, and dark circles under your eyes. Get some extra sleep, then get a good prescription for retinol from your doctor to control the damage.

And bloats your eyes

The skin around your eyes is much thinner than the rest of your body and gradually gets thinner with age. This is why on your face you wear your strain more prominently: A lack of sleep increases cortisol, which helps the tissues around the eyes to retain moisture (in a bad way). A morning apply of eye cream or serum is your quick fix. But don’t let lack of sleep become a routine, otherwise you’ll start to see more permanent and less reversible effects.