How Does Cortisol Impact Skin Health?

How Does Cortisol Impact Skin Health?

Cortisol, often labeled the stress hormone, plays a pivotal role in managing not just stress but a spectrum of physiological functions, including immune response, metabolism, and yes, even the health of your skin. Its production is intricately tied to the body's stress response system, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, initiating a cascade of reactions that prime the body to handle perceived threats.

Cortisol Activation in the Skin

The skin, being the largest organ, is a critical battleground for cortisol's effects. Here, cortisol is synthesized following a complex interaction of signals between the brain and adrenal glands, a process amplified under stress. This hormonal surge influences the skin's structural integrity and its ability to repair and regenerate.

Effects of Cortisol on Skin Cells and Proteins

At the cellular level, cortisol's reach is profound. It disrupts the function of keratinocytes (skin cells) and fibroblasts, which are responsible for producing and maintaining the extracellular matrix and collagen essential for the skin's barrier and structural support. 

On a molecular level, the hormone accelerates the breakdown of vital proteins like collagen and elastin. The result? An expedited aging process, diminished skin elasticity, and a compromised barrier function that leaves skin vulnerable to external aggressors.

Mitigation Strategies: Adaptogens and Other Ingredients

Combating cortisol's adverse effects requires a targeted approach, and adaptogens offer a promising solution. These potent botanicals aid in balancing cortisol levels, fostering resilience against stress.

Ashwagandha: This powerhouse herb mitigates stress-induced cortisol levels, enhancing skin's appearance by fostering a more youthful, vibrant complexion.

Rhodiola: Known for bolstering longevity and vitality, it supports the skin's stress resistance, contributing to overall health and resilience.

Neurophroline: Extracted from wild indigo, this innovative ingredient tackles stress-related damage, promoting a serene, balanced skin environment.

In concert with adaptogens, antioxidants and peptides play a crucial role in reinforcing the skin's resilience, offering a multi-faceted defense against cortisol's onslaught.


Cortisol's pervasive influence on health extends far beyond mere stress responses, impacting everything from metabolic function to skin health. Recognizing and addressing its effects through strategic lifestyle and skincare choices is paramount. The Essential Set by GOA emerges as a thoughtfully curated solution, embodying a blend of cutting-edge ingredients like Neurophroline, tailored to mitigate cortisol's impact.



Essentials Set

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