By Nwadiogo Quartey-Ngwube

The Interdependence of Skin & Breath

I was fascinated to discover, as an adult, that the eczema and asthma I developed as a child are actually causally linked. These two seemingly completely separate conditions actually have many things in common.

The idea that a skin affliction and a respiratory disease could be related got me thinking about how else breathing impacts skin health. It turns out, with oxygen being an essential ingredient to healthy, youthful skin, your respiratory system actually supports your skin in numerous ways.

Oxygenation from the outside has long been a constitutive component of external skincare--leading to the rise of mineral makeup (over heavy, pore-clogging foundation), and expensive spa treatments like oxygen facials.

But breathing alone can lead to healthy, radiant skin by improving circulation, allowing for toxin elimination through the lymphatic and respiratory systems, stimulating cell metabolism, and simply calming your mind, and relieving the physical manifestations that come with stress.

Oxygen stimulates the body’s natural healing system overall, and increases the production of collagen and elastin which are essential to skin vitality. These both contribute to the texture, thickness, and elasticity of skin, which will in turn reduce the appearance of wrinkles, dark circles, and blemishes.

Foods and cosmetics high in circulation-stimulating compounds like chlorophyll, lycopene, and omega-3 fatty acids will do wonders for your skin (you can also try liquid chlorophyll, which will increase your red blood cells giving the oxygen level in your body a mega-boost!) Exercise, stretching, and meditation are great for relieving stress through deep, mindful breathing. And whatever you do, stay away from the cigarettes!