Has blush never been part of your daily beauty routine because your natural complexion gifted you with an almost constant state of redness? Does the word “blush” almost immediately turn your cheeks into a deep shade of crimson?
Where does this blushing come from? What is its purpose? Why do we blush? And how can we control it?
Human beings are the only animals that blush, aren’t we lucky? But seriously, sarcasm aside, blushing may not actually always be as bad as we make it out to be. According to a study by Dr. Marije aan het Rot, a behavioural scientist at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, “when people blush in an embarrassing or shameful situation, they are more likely to be seen by others as likeable and trustworthy than if they had not blushed.”
Although that is all fine and dandy, for those who do not care for these benefits, there are reassuringly ways to prevent it.
But first, why do we actually blush?
Embarrassment, guilt, self-consciousness, stress, being put in the centre of attention, and alcohol are all common causes of blushing. In fact, research has shown has shown that simply being told that you’re blushing when you’re not really is enough to make you blush. The veins in your face dilate, blood flow increases in your cheeks, and voilà, there you go: a whole new colour.
Blushing is when your brain acknowledges you are in an extremely self-aware or uncomfortable situation, causing your nervous system to signal to your facial muscles to relax.
Now most importantly, how can we prevent it?
EMBRACE THE BLUSH. It’s true, actively wanting to stop blushing actually makes you blush more. Instead, merely accepting it makes it go away much faster. Blushing occurs when your facial muscles are told to relax, so fight back by relaxing even harder. Seriously, drop your shoulders, breath calmly, take it easy, and you’ll gradually return to your normal colour.
As blushing is most commonly caused by embarrassment and increased self-awareness, work on improving your self-confidence and caring less about what people think of you. Of course, this is easier said than done.
The key to control: RELAX
For more information on how to control it, if relaxing isn’t really your thing, make a relaxing meal or try a few simple yoga positions. Namaste.