how alcohol impacts skin

Your skin is connected to nearly every aspect of your body. When something is off in another part of your body, it likely also manifests itself on the skin. Dermatologists in Loveland are a great resource for personalized skincare recommendations, especially for skincare treatments related to other lifestyle choices or health concerns.

One of the most common lifestyle choices related to skin is drinking alcohol. Consuming alcohol is part of life for many people, but drinking too much or the wrong types of drinks can lead to skin issues. What you put into your body will easily show itself through your skin. Here are four ways alcohol affects your skin.

Alcohol increases dehydration

A night of drinking can quickly take its toll on your skin, and a large reason for that is because alcohol increases dehydration. Alcohol is a diuretic that causes people to have to use the bathroom more often, which causes the body to lose water and become dehydrated. When skin is dehydrated, it feels and looks less plump and elastic and makes it easier to see fine lines and wrinkles.

Dehydrated skin also doesn’t have the same barrier against the elements, including sun damage, which can lead to other lasting skin issues. Aside from flushing water from the body, alcohol also makes it difficult to rehydrate after drinking, which can lead to dry, flaky skin. Recovering from dehydrated skin can take longer than getting over a hangover.

Alcohol increases inflammation

Even just a drink or two can make skin looked puffy and inflamed. That’s because alcohol changes the skin’s hormonal condition and causes blood vessels to expand and become more visible. Inflammation causes collagen to break down, which can permanently damage the skin and lead to premature wrinkles and sagging. Larger blood vessels can cause the face to look inflamed and red, and the more drinks that a person has over time, the worse the problem can get. There’s a reason that frequent drinkers often have faces that look permanently flushed, even when they haven’t been drinking.

Alcohol can cause breakouts

Every person’s skin reacts to certain ingredients differently, with some things causing breakouts in some people and not in other people. However, one of the most common acne-causing ingredients across the board is sugar. Alcoholic drinks tend to be very high in sugar, especially in cocktails and mixed drinks. Increasing your sugar intake or binging on sugary drinks can lead to breakouts, and the extra sugar in the skin cells can create a duller complexion.

Alcohol disrupts sleep

A night of drinking can make it difficult to get a full night’s sleep or can cause restless sleep. Your skin regenerates and recovers while you sleep, so an interrupted night can cut into the time the skin needs to replenish and look fresh for the next day. Repeated interrupted nights can add to a tired and dull complexion, as well as create bags under the eyes that are difficult to mask or remove.

It’s important to note that not all alcoholic drinks are created equally. Experts recommend sticking with red wine, which contains antioxidants and other beneficial ingredients in moderation. For mixed drinks, simpler cocktails, such as things mixed with lemon or lime juice, are better for the skin. Drinks that contain lots of sugar or added ingredients, such as margaritas and complicated cocktails, tend to be the worst for the skin.

Skin is fragile and can be easily affected by what you put in your body. These four ways alcohol impacts the skin show how delicate skin can be. If your skin has experienced any of these conditions, especially on a regular basis, meet with Loveland dermatologists for personalized treatment recommendations to get your skin looking bright and healthy again.