Despite people wearing less makeup and exposing themselves to less pollution during the lockdown, some have reported increases in breakouts, excess oil production, redness and dryness. This aptly named ‘lockdown skin’ has taken many by surprise with the effects of staying indoors for long periods, stress and routine changes all being defining causes.
We take a closer look at these changes, the reasons behind them and what you can do to get your skin back on track amidst easing lockdown conditions.
What is lockdown skin?
If your skin took a turn for the worse during the lockdown, you’re certainly not alone. Lockdown skin changes have been widespread, with people with varying skin conditions and routines finding that the skincare products they’ve come to rely on just aren’t hacking it anymore.
Lockdown skin comes in many forms – some have experienced extreme or patchy dryness, whilst others have found their skin has gone into overdrive on the oil production front. Redness, inflammation, spots and breakouts have also become more common.
What’s causing these skin changes?
To get to the bottom of your lockdown skin understanding the causes behind it is a must. A lot has gone on in previous months, with lockdown and the more recent relaxation of rules affecting our physical, mental and emotional health. And this shows on our skin.
Your skin, after all, reflects your body’s health and being stuck indoors for longer periods; not getting the sun exposure we need to top up essential, skin-enhancing vitamin D levels; and heightened stress levels caused by uncertainty and routine changes have all had a part to play.
Stress, in particular, can result in breakouts and dull the complexion. Higher stress levels often mean healthy eating habits fall by the wayside too, which can lead to acne, dryness and premature ageing. Find out more about the relationship between stress and your skin here.
The increased use of face masks, hand sanitisers and rigorous hand washing techniques has also created conditions and exposed our skin to products it’s just not used to.
Not using sunscreen due to the lack of time spent outside has had a profound effect on the skin too as Longevity explains:
“Unfortunately, the sun’s rays can still affect you while you’re still by the windows, while you’re working in the garden and even when you’re taking a quick morning stroll. It’s important to remember that UV damage is responsible for up to 80% of visible signs of ageing in the skin, therefore we should do our best to protect our skin. This also involves protecting our skin against the ageing effects of blue light, what with the number of ZOOM meetings we have, has significantly increased.”
With all the factors mentioned above, it’s no wonder our skin has been suffering in recent months!
How can I get my skin back to its best?
Great skin starts from within. Get your healthy eating back on track to ensure your skin receives the nourishment it needs to tackle the uncertainty and routine changes that are a part of everyone’s new normal at the moment.
Make sure your diet is packed full of fruits and veggies, and focus on eating foods that are rich in fibre and antioxidants. Fibre will aid digestion which will shift the toxins that cause inflammation and make the skin more prone to breakouts, surprise spots and acne.
Invest in a good quality sunscreen, even if you are spending more time indoors. Unbeknown to most, sunscreen should be a part of your daily skincare routine all year round to protect your skin from those harmful UVA and UVB rays.
Combine this great sun protection with regular trips outside to top up those vitamin D levels. Vitamin D is integral to immunity and your mood. Lower levels of vitamin D have also been linked to eczema, atopic dermatitis, psoriasis and other drying skin conditions. Even long term sufferers of eczema will find symptoms easier to manage by upping their vitamin D levels.
Don’t forget to give your hands and face a little more love as they adjust to life with repeated hand washing, hand sanitising and face mask-wearing. Hand sanitiser, in particular, is very drying and harsh. Moisturise your hands regularly to repair the skin’s barrier and replace lost moisture. Replenish dry hands and discover deep nourishment with our SOS Skin Balm or Lavender and Bergamot Skin Balm, they’ve been lifesavers for NHS workers during this difficult time.
Going au naturel with your skincare products can also provide the gentle, barrier repairing help your skin needs to succeed in the face of stress, routine changes and mask use. Our natural, plant-based skin products completely nourish your skin and detoxify your beauty routine so you can pave the way for a new normal with wellness in mind.
Shop our range of all-natural skincare products right here.