Many young women say they’ve had a ‘wake-up call’ in lockdown, study finds

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A new study from Neutrogena and OnePoll found that uncertainty about the future is causing stress for many young women in recent months. (Photo by Park Street on Unsplash)

Four in 10 Gen Z women have experienced a wake-up call during quarantine that made them realize what they want to pursue in life, according to new research.

The study asked 2,000 American women aged 18–24 about their time in isolation and how it has impacted them.

As 44% of respondents have experienced a wake-up call during this time, it’s no surprise that a further 41% shared they’ve reevaluated their professional career goals because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Neutrogena, the survey found all of this uncertainty about the future has caused 67% of respondents to feel more stressed than ever before.

And as women are experiencing increased stress levels, 27% shared their acne has increased along with it.

Thirteen percent of women surveyed shared that quarantine was the first time they’ve experienced acne.

To manage their stress levels, over half of women surveyed shared they’ve connected with a hobby to stay positive during this uncertain time.

Another 43% said the key to keeping their confidence up during quarantine was their skin care routine.

In fact, 74% of respondents are reevaluating their skin care routines while they self-isolate.

In fact, the average Gen Z woman surveyed has tried seven new products during quarantine, specifically three new skin care products, two new acne-specific products and they’ve tried an average of two DIY-products.

The survey found that Gen Z women do tread lightly when trying new skin care products, however, as 59% shared their top concern when trying something new is whether it will actually do more harm than good and make their acne worse.

Over half of women surveyed also shared they worry they’ll have a bad reaction to the product and 51% worry the product will be a dud and not be as successful as they hoped.

“Sometimes it takes a bit of trial and error to find what works best for your skin, but I typically recommend sticking to products and ingredients that are backed by years of science and research,” said dermatologist Dr. Sheila Farhang.

“The good news is, these products can be found in drugstores, so you don’t have to spend a ton of money building a skin care routine.”

Sixty-four percent of those surveyed also said they’ve used their time in isolation to research how to improve their skin.

For those surveyed who do experience acne, 51% said the culprit has been increased stress levels, closely followed by inconsistent sleep schedules during their time in quarantine.

Thirty-seven percent of these women also shared their breakouts have been caused by wearing masks or other protective face coverings.

“It’s true, we may be wearing less makeup, but factors like stress, changes in diet and sleep, and wearing masks can take its toll on our skin, causing acne and breakouts. Try adding a salicylic acid cleanser to your daily routine to keep your pores clear and combat any breakouts,” said dermatologist Dr. Sheila Farhang.

“I like Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit Cleanser because it’s formulated with MicroClear Technology to get the acne-fighting medication deep into your pores, tackling the source of the breakouts. But remember, regardless of which product you choose to try, it’s important to be consistent to see results.”

Increased stress levels — 51%
Inconsistent sleep schedules — 43%
Hormonal changes related to my menstrual cycle — 43%
Change in diet — 38%
Use of protective face-coverings/masks — 37%
Uncertainty about my day-to-day routines — 30%

Finishing college virtually — 48%
Finding a job after graduation that will pay enough — 44%
Finding a job after graduation that I enjoy doing — 42%
Graduating on time — 38%
Paying off my student loans on time — 30%

>> Download the video and infographic for this research story <<
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