Stress acne is perhaps one of the most difficult skin issues to deal with because it really doesn’t have a lot to do with how healthy your skin is. There are different forms of acne you can get that can be caused by an array of issues. Stress acne, of course, is the result of high stress levels that impact your body.
I, personally deal with a lot of stress in my day-to-day life and I have always suffered from acne partially because of it. There really aren’t any “quick fixes” for acne that is the result of stress but there are long-term solutions and coping mechanisms that everyone should know about.
This is probably the most obvious one, decrease your stress to get rid of your stress acne. To stop stress acne, you need to start at the core of the problem. But of course, it’s easier said than done. There’s only so much we can do when we have to keep up with our demanding schedules. But try taking a few minutes a day to yourself and saying “no” when your plate is full. For quick relief in stressful moments, try relaxation techniques like deep breathing, meditation, a warm bubble bath, lighting some calming candles, or whatever works best for you.
2. Get a good cleanser
Keeping your face clean is the key to beating any kind of acne or skin irritation. If you already struggle with acne, you should be looking for products that are designed to clear up skin. Oxy and Spectro are two trusted brands that offer a wide-range of products for blemish prone skin. They are proven to clear up skin and prevent future breakouts. Don’t be scared to try out a few different products to find the right one for you. Everyone’s skin and skin care needs are unique.
3. Change your diet
This one will not make you happy. A big part of reducing any stress related health issue is to change your diet. You may not know it but food becomes a big coping mechanism with stress. That’s part of why stress is associated with weight gain as well. Changing your eating habits is a good step to take in curing your stress acne. It’s important to focus on getting lots of vegetables and cutting back on the “junk” food quite a bit.
Some of the first things to go include; sugar, caffeine, and foods high in trans fat.
4. Change your sleep habits
Most studies have found that the average adult needs 8 hours of sleep at night to stay healthy and function at their best but with school, work, and personal responsibilities, that’s not always easy to pull off. There really isn’t any way around this one, guys. You just have to make it happen. Getting enough sleep is part of keeping your body healthy. It is also a huge part of lowering stress levels. A healthy body on the inside reflects on the outside (and it works the opposite way, too!)
Creating a schedule is the best way to make sure you’re making time for self-care. Make sure that 10 hours before you have to get up in the morning, you’re turning off electronics and winding down. Reading a book, knitting, spending time with your pet, or having a cup of (caffeine free) tea are a few ways you can get ready for bed. Get into bed a half hour earlier than you need to be asleep to allow you time to fall asleep. Some people need a little extra help from herbal teas, melatonin, or other sleep aids. Do whatever works for you!
5. Get some exercise
We all know the benefits of exercising for your figure but exercising also has a big impact on your mental health. The act of getting stronger and working out itself has a good effect on your state of mind. It helps you concentrate on something that isn’t stressful for a change and clears your mind. Seeing the results of your hard work are also very gratifying and make you feel good about yourself and the goals you’re meeting. Sweating during your workout is also great for your skin! Just remember to wash your face well afterwards to get rid of any dirt, oil, or old makeup.
6. Don’t anger your skin.
Your first instinct when you’re breaking out is to vigorously clean your skin. You’ll want to exfoliate and scrub your face to try to get a deep clean. However, this isn’t the best plan. While you should exfoliate occasionally in general, when you’re going through a period of bad breakouts, scrubbing your skin isn’t a good idea. Harsh scrubbing will dry out your skin, cause the acne to spread, and can also lead to scarring. Gently washing your face once a day with a cleanser suited for you is the best course of action.
When your skin is feeling oily and you’re broken out, the last thing you might want to do is add more moisture to the situation but you actually should be moisturizing. The key is to pick a product that is antibacterial and has anti-inflammatory properties. This will offer you the regular benefits of moisturizing but also help prevent inflammation, pain, and infection that can come with severe acne. It is all part of the healing process!
8. Don’t turn up every weekend
You’re going to hate me for this, but a big way to help heal and prevent acne is to cut back on the alcohol. Drinking dries out your skin and can lead to breakouts in some cases. It’s just not a healthy choice for your face. Giving up alcohol completely is a big step (especially with that information about the sugar and caffeine you just got) so start by cutting back a bit and see if your skin improves.
9. Talk to your doctor
Sometimes our skin care issues get bigger than what we can handle and there is no shame in it. If you’re struggling with your skin, make an appointment with your doctor or a dermatologist. There are many techniques and products they can give you that you can’t get without a prescription. There are powerful, extremely effective products that will clean up your skin and keep it clean. Doctors may also have ideas and medications to help in cases of severe stress, such as disorders to help resolve your trouble from the core. Remember to always follow the directions of your physician and the products themselves.
Stress acne is a pretty normal issue that a lot of us go through but it isn’t something you have to live with. There are plenty of routines, products, and lifestyle changes you can use to heal your stress breakouts and keep them at bay. Don’t be afraid to try things out and see what works for you. Take care of yourself and your skin will thank you for it!
Featured Image via Alexis Ren.