Do you ever look in the mirror and wonder why your skin looks so different to your bestie or colleague. Do you sometimes have a feeling of pride in how your skin compares or a sense of wonderment as to why you have more wrinkles or pigmentation than those around you of your age? Well, this is the pure experience of Skin Peer Pressure.
There is a multitude of intrinsic and extrinsic factors that influence the physiological functioning of our skins. Let’s take a closer look at these internal and external factors:
- Genes – just like Genes determine your hair and eye colour, it also determines your skin type. As an example, a dry skin type generally ages quicker than an oily skin type.
- Hormones – during various life stages like adolescence, pregnancy, pre-menopause and menopause, certain hormones are dominant at the time. 99% of the time, this affects the functioning of your skin. During adolescence, testosterone levels are higher which may cause an increase in sebum (oil) production, enlarged pores, break outs and blemishes. During pre-menopause, androgen production increases and oestrogen levels decrease. The knock-on effect is much like that of testosterone. During menopause, oestrogen levels drop even lower which causes the skin to thin and dry out. Oestrogen also affects collagen production which may decrease up to 30% in the first five years, thanks to those hormones.
- Diet – your diet plays a vital role in skin health! Work on maintaining a healthy, balanced diet packed with fresh fruits and vegetables that contain essential vitamins like Vitamin A and C that regulate skins’ functioning and health, packed with antioxidants. Your skin will thank you.
- Stress – again… Stress hormones like cortisol are released which affects your skin negatively.
- Lack of sleep – beauty sleep is a real thing? Yes, it is, you need to get sufficient sleep/rest for your skin to rejuvenate itself. Did you know that your skin is at its busiest at night-time with its natural recovery process? It is for this reason that you MUST remove your make up and try to put on all the good stuff at night.
- Medication and medical conditions – certain medications like sinus meds and antibiotics can have a negative effect on the skin, dehydrating and sensitising the skin, whilst medical conditions like diabetes and heart conditions can impair the skins natural healing ability and ability to nourish and detoxify itself.
- UV Rays – which is the largest contributor to skin ageing, increased cell turnover and pigmentation. But, by wearing your SPF daily and re-applying it as well as using products containing antioxidants, this can curb the effects of the sun on your skin.
- Incorrect product usage – one of the most common reasons our skins act out could be the products you are using which may be too harsh for your skin, or not adding back enough moisture. This can prove to be damaging long-term.
- Weather – the climate can have a major impact on our skins. Hot weather conditions tend to activate our sebaceous glands to increase sebum production, while cold weather conditions tend to dry out our skins. Make sure to adjust/change your products and/or add on appropriate products for each season to maintain the health of your skin.
- Pollutants – this is something that we unfortunately cannot escape. Make sure you use non-comedogenic, gentle cleansers to remove these from your skin as well as sufficient antioxidants to combat these free radicals.
It cannot be stressed enough how important a good skin routine and a balanced lifestyle is for looking and feeling great.
External factors are the biggest contributors to damaged skins, but the good news is that we can also minimise the damage of external factors with the proper skincare recommendation and lifestyle changes.
Ask your skincare professional for advice on this, as they are well-trained in order to get your skin back on track. You will hugely benefit from it!