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Minimising the impacts of stress skincare’s new frontier


Minimising the impacts of stress skincare’s new frontier

Scientists have long studied the effect of topical formulations on improving the condition of skin. The intricate relationship between the mind and our skin is a more recent focus. 

Of course some connections are obvious – ever got so nervous you started to sweat? A cheeky wink cause an unexpected blush to bloom on your cheeks?

What’s been given increasing focus however is the potential impact short and long term stress can have on the health and appearance of our skin and the signs of aging, and what we might do to minimise it. 

Studies like Brain-Skin Connection: Stress, Inflammation and Skin Aging by Ying Chen and John Lyga show the ways in which experts believe stress and the change in stress hormones like cortisol, can play a part in skin conditions such as psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, acne, and even aging. 

With plenty of further ongoing research, this year will see the arrival of a new wave of skincare dedicated to minimising stress-related skin challenges, in particular the impact on skin’s protective barrier, moisture-loss and inflammation.

Skincare serums and moisturisers claiming to help with stress related conditions tend to offer the likes of hyaluronic acid for soothing skin, powerful antioxidants for protection and repair, and peptides for a collagen boost.

It’s not just skincare that’s seeking to provide solutions, expect to see makeup designed to address these issues too. 

Both Environ’s new Focus Care Youth+ Seriénce™ Night Serum and Trinny London’s BFF De-Stress Tinted Serum (above), akin to a brightening tinted moisturiser, are made with Neurophroline, an ingredient based on wild indigo extract its maker Givaudan claims ‘breaks down the cortisol production by skin cells, and activates the release of a natural calming neuropeptide acting on mood’.

Other approaches currently being explored by brands include improving how we manage stress by introducing mindful, sensorial and repetitive processes into beauty routines, and the potential functional benefits of fragrance, in particular notes said to have a calming impact. 



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