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Sleepless In Toronto: Does Stress Cause Acne?

olena loves peace, acne stress

Remember the old chicken or the egg adage.. Which came first? The Acne or the stress?

Articles all over the internet point to a link between the two, and I have to wholeheartedly agree.

My skin care routine is on point, so is my diet, so is my lifestyle. I’m a clean freak – that’s another way of saying I’m a purist. I believe in giving myself the best because I want to feel and look my best. I take care of myself. 

However, despite doing everything right, there’s one little factor that creeps in – a factor I haven’t yet learned to control: stress.

I’ve decided to become an entrepreneur. With this exciting and empowering decision a heap of stress, like a ton of bricks, fell on me. The outcome depends entirely on me – an amazing and terrifying thought that keeps me up at night.

Sometimes I can’t fall asleep until 6 in the morning (like last night) because my mind refuses to shut off – too many ideas, too many decisions, too much to do! I’ve become an insomniac entrepreneur… living the dream!

Not sleeping enough is extremely damaging; it lowers immune function, raises cortisol, makes hormones go crazy, slows down metabolism, causes overall feelings of lethargy… It just sucks. 

I’ve even learned to embrace the fact that anxiety and excitement are now a way of life – but my skin hasn’t… My skin reacts.

It tells me that I need to relax, that I need to sleep – and because it can’t speak, it uses pimples to communicate… (Such an attention wh***!).


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Luckily the pimples are few and far between, but they’re lasting and painful and annoying. Adult Acne is the most ridiculous kind of Acne. You hope to have outgrown it… What? Ten years ago?

Apparently being an adult causes stress, stress causes Acne, Acne causes more stress that causes more Acne… Are you pounding your ahead against a wall yet?


At the very least, acne-prone skin forces you to take stock of what you’re doing to your body, and to right wrongs…

At the very least, acne-prone skin forces you to take stock of what you’re doing to your body, and to right wrongs… to mind your p’s and q’s, to keep yourself balanced at all times; to take care of yourself. It’s forcefully forcing me into finding a real way of dealing with stress.

No more sleepless nights pondering the meaning of life or the meaning of Acne!

My next step is learning to meditate as a way to completely cure myself of any ills that could potentially show on my face or anywhere else. My overactive mind needs to simmer down, and go within. I’m not gonna lie, this prospect seems daunting – a silent mind? My mind? Silent? Uh-oh. 

Stress isn’t just stunningly bad for our faces (acne, wrinkles) but it’s bad overall (metabolism, state of being), and I’m determined to overcome it. 

As many a spiritual healer have said, ‘Change the way you look at things, and the things you look at change.’ – there’s no time like the present to actually live by these words.

x Olena

P.S. Follow me on Instagram!


  • Taylor
    Its good to see our generation taking ownership for their lives and their perils; adult acne being a key one that will proliferate throughout our generation unless others can embody the same qualities of entrepreneurship you've got. Do for yourself, treat yourself as you want to be treated, not as society treats you and you will see fantastic results, on your skin and in your soul.
  • Solomiya
    I learned a lot from you about skin care when you lived here, I'm glad you're sharing this stuff with more people!

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