Stressed out skin

Rachel Farrell

With exams and constant deadlines, the life of a student can be extremely stressful. Throwing in financial worries, relationships and perhaps a part-time job on the side, it’s no wonder that Irish students find exam time more stressful than their European counterparts.

Two thirds of Irish students experience anxiety even if they’re prepared for an exam, according to research by the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development. That’s higher than the European average.

Like the body, the skin can react to stress in many ways. Niamh Hogan, CEO of natural skincare brand Holos Skincare, says that inflammation appears to be closely related to stress.

“Conditions like rosacea worsening or even just appearing for the first time can occur during stressful times,” Hogan said. She explained that people who get the redness and dryness from rosacea may also experience acne.

Rosacea is a skin condition that is often associated with red cheeks- a permanent ‘rosy’ look. La Roche-Posay’s ‘Rosaliac’ range is designed specifically for those with rosacea. The range aims to neutralise redness and strengthen the skin. Prices start at €15.99 for the makeup remover and €22.99 for moisturiser.

Being stressed can have a knock on effect on our daily life, which in turn can impact the skin. “Stressful times can be accompanied by unhealthy practices like unhealthy eating and alcohol consumption, all of which can can affect our skin,” Hogan said.

Students may notice that their hangover is accompanied by dry skin, something that is caused by the dehydration alcohol causes, so drinking lots of water is key.

While rosacea and breakouts are one of the obvious side effects of stress on the skin, one of the lesser known impacts is frown lines. According to Hogan, “tension is often a symptom of stress, holding muscles right in the back, neck, shoulders and even in the face. Tension in the face can literally lead to furrows and frown lines. It’s important to smile to work the muscles of the face and help promote circulation to the muscles and the skin”.

There are many brands with products catering for different types of stressed skin. If your skin is dry and lacklustre, Superdrug’s ‘Calm Skin’ 2-in-1 serum and moisturiser is a bargain at less than €5.

If stress causes you to breakout, a targeted spot treatment could do the trick. Neutrogena’s ‘Visibly Clear Spot Stress Control’ could be for you, with the face wash retailing for €6.29 in Boots.


Rachel Farrell

Image Credit: Pexels