From some rum-infused eggnog on Christmas morning, to the oh-so-sweet taste of champagne on New Year’s Eve, the holiday season is often not complete without some booze to go along with it. When we think about alcohol, we often immediately hone in on its effect on our weight, our liver, and of course, our brain. Yet, what is often overlooked is the way drinking impacts our skin.
Alcohol is a toxin with little nutritional value that can often diminish your skin’s quality and appearance. Many boozy drinks also contain high quantities of sugar that can lead to breakouts and hormonal disruptions. The sugar in many alcoholic drinks can elevate your insulin levels to negatively impact your thyroid and sex hormones, and can swing your hormonal balance out of whack.
It is not just your stomach that bloats when you drink. Alcohol causes internal inflammation and this can result in puffiness and redness of your skin. Drinks also target bacteria in your stomach called the microbiome. The microbiome is important for regulating your immune system to prevent inflammatory skin diseases.
Last but definitely not least, that crisp glass of merlot is dehydrating you at unprecedented levels. Alcohol is a diuretic (hence why you may be making more trips to the bathroom after that extra drink), and can deprive your skin of important vitamins and nutrients. It is also hard to rehydrate after drinking, and therefore, your skin is often left dry and flaky with more visible wrinkles after a night out.
It is important to be aware of the way that extra glass of booze can affect your skin, and to take steps such as drinking plenty of liquids (and by liquids I mean water) and moisturizing to reduce its harm. It would be unreasonable for me to tell you to cut out drinking all together this holiday season, but maybe trade in your glass of wine to a glass of milk, and sneak a cookie off of Santa’s plate.
Written by: Prishni Seyone