Sex and skin NORMAL.jpg

Can sex give you better skin?

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  • You shouldn’t need a good reason to bone, but we’ll give you seven skin related ones, proven by science.

    Ever noticed how sex gives your skin that dreamy, slightly dewy afterglow. Or that after sweaty sesh your skin appears to be brighter, fresher and even a bit plumper. You might have just put it down to the post-coital (and hopefully post-orgasmic) haze making everything seems rosier – but there’s science behind it too: ‘The release of endorphins after an orgasm helps to relieve stress levels whilst also increasing blood flow to the skin,’ says Dr Ross Perry, GP and specialist in Dermatology. ‘That gives one a flushed and fresh looking appearance to the skin.’

    That’s just the basics though. Seriously, the horizontal hula can genuinely affect the quality of your skin. So without further ado, here’s the science behind sexy time and skin. As if we needed another reason to hop on.

    Shagging zaps spots

    Not literally. We’re not suggesting you take any, er, reproductive fluids and apply them to that wayward pimple residing on your forehead (grim). But, what you might not know is that sex balances out your hormones and both your testosterone and oestrogen levels experience a boost from regular bumping and grinding. Testosterone is vital in musculoskeletal development and plays a role in your libido. Sex also increases women’s oestrogen levels, which helpfully protects against heart disease. But the good skin news is because sex helps to regulate your hormone levels, in theory; your skin should be clearer and less prone to hormone-induced breakouts, which usually manifest across your jawline.

    It also improves your lymphatic drainage

    Faciallist Abigail James says: ‘Physical movement and massage increase lymphatic drainage by aiding the body’s detoxification process. That boost to the lymphatic system results in brighter, clearer healthy skin.’ It’s well known that one of the few ways to minimize cellulite is to stimulate and regulate your lymphatic system, so, in theory you could hump yourself cellulite free. Slightly tenuous link, but a great excuse to grab some massage oils and get to it. (Eighties smooth jams optional.)

    Doing the dirty lowers your cortisol levels

    ‘The stress hormone cortisol has been shown to speed up the ageing process,’ says James. Although we’re cool with getting older, nobody wants to speed it up right? ‘Touch receptors in the skin impact on the nervous system, have a huge effect in reducing stress and making us release happy hormones.’ You could just hug people daily – that’s been proven to do a similar thing – but is that as much fun. IS IT? Our prescription – a regular dose of bedroom rodeo.

    It also releases a much-needed hormone called dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA)

    You might not have heard of it, but DHEA is a hormone that helps with the production of collagen – that’s the stuff that keeps your skin firm. DHEA decreases the production of the collagenase enzymes that destroy collagen and also promotes regular sebum production, keeping your skin moisturized and supple. The magical DHEA also contains myriad antimicrobial components that prevent infection and irritation. Who knew? You do now. (Insert aubergine and cat emojis here.)
    Having a quickie also gives you plumper lips

    Step away from the lip fillers. Boning can plump the lips, making them appear fuller. ‘It’s a well known “mirror reaction” to increased circulation in the vaginal area,” says Dr Tiina Meder of Meder Beauty Science. Essentially it’s well known that your vagina can swell after screwing, and that effect can be mirrored in your other lips too. Obviously they’ll go back down again shortly after (unless you go for round two, three, four etc) but we’re just saying, it’s a bonus.

    Getting laid opens up… your pores

    Granted, being sweaty – even in the throws of passion – isn’t always ideal. Being physically stuck to somebody isn’t always pleasant. But, sweating IS good for the skin – it opens up then pores, cleaning out the toxins and pollution that has accumulated. However, you will have to rinse your skin afterwards to rid it of the debris to see the maximum clear-skin benefits. Still, if a little bit of pondering the unicorn (I’m all out of sex euphemisms and have resorted to asking the internet, soz) helps keep your skin clear sign us the f*ck up!

    Climbing somebody like a tree makes you feel hotter

    So few of us are blessed with skin that we love, which is sad. We should all love our skin – it’s the body’s biggest organ after all. But getting jiggy can actually increase your self-esteem, meaning that when you look at yourself afterwards (or during, lols) in theory you’re less likely to be more critical of your flaws. And you should too – because even if you don’t love your skin, you should love yourself – whether you’re ‘torpedoing the eel’ (the internet, again) or not. That’s the last one. I promise.

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