Whether it’s a wine after work on a Friday (or Monday, we won’t judge) or more than a few cocktails at a big event, it’s both normal and enjoyable to indulge in an alcoholic drink from time to time. But while we all know that drinking alcohol can be tough on your liver, did you know it can also affect your skin? In this article we investigate what alcohol does to your skin and how giving the booze a break you can benefit you!
What alcohol is doing to your skin
The sugar load of many alcoholic drinks is quite high, which can cause insulin levels to spike and result in skin inflammation, redness, irritation and sometimes even acne. Excessive consumption can also deprive skin of vitamins and effect the body’s ability to produce collagen, leading to lasting, visible effects such as fine lines, bloating and dullness.
What role does the liver play on our skin?
Your skin reflects your liver. Your liver is the metabolic factory of your body and produces the energy to sustain the thousands of functions performed by all of your body’s cells. For example, your hair follicles need energy to grow strong shiny hair and your skin cells require energy to eliminate toxins and repair and regenerate themselves. Your heart requires energy to pump blood efficiently to your skin to maintain collagen production and oxygenate the cells to protect them from ageing. If your liver is not doing its job of breaking down toxins efficiently, they must be eliminated from your body by other means – in many cases they come out through your skin!
Benefits of ditching the booze
Going sober for a few weeks, or simply cutting back on your alcohol consumption, will give your skin the ability to regenerate. Although this will depend on how much damage has already been done. A booze-free month is a great way to allow skin to detox and re-hydrate and regenerate, skin will absorb vitamins and other nutrients more easily leading to less bloating and even potentially redness.
Does alcohol increase the likelihood of skin conditions?
When you consume excessive amounts of alcohol, toxins can build up in the deeper layers of the skin causing inflammation to occur and this can manifest in your skin as bloating, puffiness, acne, redness, flushing, premature ageing and even an increase in wrinkles!
6 steps to protect your skin
It is possible to maintain your glow and radiance, while still enjoying the occasional cocktail hour. Here’s how to prevent and treat the adverse effects drinking alcohol has on the skin:
1. Cleanse your face after your night out and apply a good hyaluronic acid moisturiser, such as the Balense Moisturiser, that re-hydrates the skin deeply to diminish dullness
2. Drink lots of water throughout the night – not just at the end – to ensure your body is able to flush toxins from your system
3. The general rule with alcohol is the clearer the better: vodka, gin and tequila are all processed through our body quicker than darker spirits or beer
4. Take some vitamin B and apply an eye cream the next morning. It also helps to sleep with two pillows instead of one to ensure fluid doesn’t accumulate around the eyes causing the puffiness
5. If you suffer from redness – don’t drink too much red wine and avoid spicy foods as your snack of choice – these all bring blood flow to your face and can cause redness or flushing of the skin
6. To reduce wrinkles you need to provide your body with a good antioxidant such as Vitamin C Serum to help your collagen recover
If you would like to learn more about the best ways to look after your skin, book a complimentary skin consultation with one of our trained dermal technicians now at Australian Skin Clinics. You can find your local clinic here or buy and book our latest sale online now.