In this article you'll learn:
1. May is Mental Health Month: How’s your skin?
2. The handful of skin conditions caused by stress and anxiety
3. Treatment options for these skin conditions
Mental health is having a moment. Between COVID-19 restrictions and the isolation they imposed, uncertain economic trends, climate change, and celebrity slap fests, these are stressful times.
According to Dr. Steve, Geologie’s founding dermatologist, “it’s hard to prove the link between stress and anxiety and skin conditions because, after all, how does one measure stress? Different people experience stress in different ways and what’s stressful for you might not be stressful for me."
"In my clinical experience, however, there is absolutely a connection between stress and so many different skin conditions.”
Skin conditions caused by stress and anxiety
Stress has been linked to a number of different skin conditions, including:
- Eczema — an inflammatory skin condition that causes dry skin, itchy skin, rashes, scaly patches, blisters, and skin infections.
- Hives — red, itchy welts that result from a skin reaction. The welts vary in size and appear and fade repeatedly as the reaction runs its course.
- Psoriasis — an immune-mediated disease that causes inflammation in the body, including raised plaques and scales.
- Rosacea — a condition characterized by facial redness with swollen red bumps and small visible blood vessels.
- Dermatillomania (picking at the skin) — a body-focused repetitive behavior where someone compulsively picks at their skin to the point of injury.
- Acne — We all know about acne. While it's tough to point to clinical evidence that stress causes acne (it can be multi-factorial), there is plenty of anecdotal evidence.
- Seborrheic dermatitis — There is a yeast that lives on our skin, and dandruff is an overreaction to the presence of that yeast, and can occur on the face, eyebrows and chest. Very common.
Skin conditions caused by stress and anxiety treatment
- Eczema —Dry skin can make eczema worse. That's why moisturizer is key. It locks in water and create a barrier against things that can irritate your skin. Hyaluronic acid, the king of moisturizers, can help this condition. You can find it in our morning cream.
- Rosacea — UV is a trigger for rosacea, so an SPF is a great anti-rosacea treatment. You can find SPF in the morning cream or SPF30 as a standalone.
- Acne — Use Geologie’s essential acne set, with salicylic acid in the facewash and retinol in the night cream.
- Seborrheic dermatitis — The salicylic acid in the facewash can help with this. The key is to apply consistently.
For hives and psoriasis, seek a dermatologists’ advice.
For skin conditions caused by stress and anxiety, Geologie strives to be as empathetic and understanding as possible, because for some guys, there are different reasons for anxiety about skin issues.
“It helps to talk through the facts and say, we’ll do everything we can, and doing the best you can is a way for you to be a little bit easier on yourself. It’s about giving people a greater sense of control and power back to break that cycle. Because if guys are stressed about the way their skin looks, that stress is just going to make it worse.”
The bottom line is, there are always things you can do to address any problem.
Ready to get started with skincare? Take our quick diagnostic and let's see how we can work together.