After some research, I've stumbled upon some good news: Turns out there is a bonus to be aiming for that happy feeling at the end of sex or masturbating—and it's not just for pleasure.
- Shirley Chi, MD, board-certified dermatologist specializing in medical and cosmetic dermatology
"During sexual activity and especially after orgasm, your body releases serotonin, dopamine, oxytocin, and prolactin," says Shirley Chi, MD, a California-based dermatologist. "What that cocktail does is basically reduce the effects of the stress hormone—cortisol—that's in your body and creates a deep sense of relaxation."
Of course, stress is one of the known factors that can aggravate your complexion— so this is music to the ears of those with an active sex (or hey, masturbating) life. "Acne is a stress-triggered condition, in that the more stressed you are, the more your skin produces oils which lead to acne formation," says Dr. Chi.
Imbalanced hormones are another culprit that cause pimples—and sex can help with this, too. "Acne comes from an increase in testosterone and estrogen—an imbalance of the two," says Dr. Chi. "But sex and also masturbation help to decrease that imbalance. They also increase circulation, which is good for removing toxins from the skin." Good news for the rising number of people Googling: "Does masturbation cause acne?"
This of course doesn't mean you should ditch your skin-care regimen for a more actively-seeking-orgasm life all in order to get a glow. "Sex and masturbation aren't the answer to acne, but they're definitely not bad for the skin," says Dr. Chi. Sounds like doctors orders to me.
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