We are going to be straight with you. The answer is no. First, we have to apologise for the misleading title, but yes, a bevvy to wind down your night is not going to do wonders for your skin, as much as that one friend might argue. But look, we have our reasons and the facts to back them up. While a night with a drink in hand is never a dull one, you might not feel the same the very next day.
Sure, you might call those two or three cocktails at the bar every bit necessary, but the reality is that they do not have any benefits to them. Even if you think the dehydration that follows after a martini can easily be mitigated with plenty of water, that is simply not how your body works.
Alcohol Sucks the Water Out of You
You know how your body seems to suffer the next day after a late night out. Well, that is your body putting you through hell from the dehydration. As alcohol is a diuretic, a substance that causes you to produce an increased amount of urine at a rapid rate, your skin cells stand to lose that water, causing your skin to feel dehydrated and look dull the next day.
At the same time, you will find rehydration much more difficult with alcohol still hanging around in your system. With less fluid in your body, all those fine lines and wrinkles on your face and skin will be much more apparent.
Ruins Your Sleep
Our beauty sleep is super important, especially after a late night out. But even after sleeping well into the afternoon, you still feel like you have barely had a wink. Even though alcohol does make you fall asleep faster and sleep more deeply in the initial few minutes, you suffer from more disruptions during your rapid eye movement (REM) sleep in the later half of the night when you binge on alcohol.
Did you know that REM sleep is an important stage of our sleep cycle, as this period is believed to be restorative and allows our bodies to recover? After a few rounds of alcohol, these disruptions actually rob you of those recuperative effects of sleep. That is why even after an eight-hour rest, you may still feel drowsy or find it much harder to concentrate. Wondering where those dark eye circles are coming from? Bingo! You now have your answer.
Worsens Skin Conditions
The sugar content found in alcohol is a big, yet tasty problem, as it puts a lot of stress on your liver. When your liver is unable to cope, the sugars are released as raw sugar in the blood or transformed into fat that's almost impossible to burn.
Similarly, when the sugar is broken down by your body into glucose, your insulin levels will spike and cause a wave of inflammation to break out across your body. When that happens, the inflammation gives rise to enzymes that damage the collagen and elastin in your skin and an increase in androgen secretion and oil production. After a night out, you will start observing more sagging skin and wrinkles, and not forgetting those pesky acne breakouts.
For patients currently recovering from skin conditions like eczema, Mr. Alcohol is the last person you should befriend. According to researchers, alcohol actually reduces the amount of microbiome in our gut — that is the healthy bacteria that help our immune system function and stay on top of inflammatory skin conditions.
The Good & Bad Alcoholic Drinks
The good thing about alcohol is that there are so many options you can pick from. The next time you start browsing the menu at the bar, the onus is on you to make the right call.
For starters, wine of any kind is known to be bad for your skin, since red or white wine are both high in sugar and would bring about systemic inflammation that would damage your skin cells and cause them to age faster. Red wine, in particular, has been found to be the worst for your skin, as it also functions as a histamine releaser. This means that redness, flushing and blotchy skin are going to quickly follow after your initial buzz.
The common culprits like mojitos and Jägerbombs are also definitely going to mess up your skin, since they are concocted with sweet additives like sugary syrup, carbonated drinks or juice.
But if you don’t wish to kill the mood on a gal’s night out, opt for drinks that have a much lower sugar content, like vodka, tequila or gin. When taken neat without any of the sweet stuff, you will be able to get away clean after a long night of slamming your shot glasses.