Can A Birth Control Pill Make Your Acne Worse
The reality is that birth control can heal and cause acne. Studies show that birth control pills can reduce acne by an average of 55%. However, after you stop taking the pills, acne can get worse. Contraceptives can also make acne worse if they don’t have enough anti-androgenic properties.
Best products for hormonal acneWhat are the best things to take for hormonal acne? Take a probiotic supplement once a day or eat yogurt with live active cultures. Probiotics work by helping the gut reduce inflammation, which can cause a variety of skin problems, including acne, the doctor says. Bend down.What acne products work best to remove acne?Neutrogena OilFree Acne Salicylic Acid To Figh
When Would Birth Control Be A Good Option To Try
Whether taking birth control pills for acne is the best option will depend on your personal situation. If you are also looking to prevent pregnancy at the same time, birth control might actually be a good first option to treat your acne. Otherwise, your healthcare practitioner might recommend trying birth control as an acne treatment when topical acne creams and oral antibiotics have failed.
Keep in mind that even if youâre on birth control for acne, your practitioner will often recommend a topical agent to go along with it.
Common topical agents used alongside birth control include a retinol containing product or a topical antibiotic .
The combined effect of the pill plus a topical agent is typically best for keeping acne under control. â
What Are The Different Types Of Birth Control Pills
Many birth control pills contain synthetic forms of the hormones estrogen and progesterone. These types of tablets are known as combination tablets. The ratio of hormones is different with each combination pill. Other birth control pills contain only progestin, a synthetic form of progesterone.
Recommended Reading: How To Get Rid Of Acne Scaring
What Else Causes Acne
Birth control certainly isnt the only factor that can trigger acne. The following things can also make non-inflammatory and inflammatory acne flare:
- Natural hormonal changes during puberty and adulthood.
- A history of acne in your family.
- Use of steroid medications, including prednisone.
- Cosmetics that clog the pores.
- Rubbing or placing pressure on skin.
- A yeast infection of the hair follicles.
- Irregular hygiene habits.
- Ingrown hairs.
Which Birth Control Methods Do Not Cause Weight Gain
Minkin explains that the best way to prevent weight gain from water is to choose birth control pills that contain drospirenone as a progestin, such as Yaz, Yasmin, and their generics. This generally does not lead to weight gain, as drospirenone acts as a diuretic and prevents water retention.
Also Check: How To Get Rid Of Acne On My Breast
What Birth Control Pill Is Least Likely To Cause Weight Gain
In general, the lower the estrogen content in the pill, the less likely you are to gain weight. The minipill contains only progestin. Since the mini-pill does not contain estrogen, it is unlikely to lead to weight gain. Brands of mini pills include Micronor and Jolivette.
How Long Does Birth Control Take To Help Acne
The hormones in birth control lower the hormone levels of androgen hormones, which contribute to acne. As such, it can take your body some time to adjust to the hormonal shift so your acne will likely not clear up immediately once you begin taking birth control. Most patients see the effects of the birth control on their acne in two to three months though some patients see a reduction in acne in only a couple of weeks. Full effects of the treatment are typically seen around six months after you begin taking the birth control. When you meet with Dr. Green, she may prescribe topical acne creams in addition to the birth control for the first couple months after you start your birth control treatment.
Recommended Reading: How To Get Rid Of Stress Acne
Birth Control And Acne: Points To Consider
Youll want to think about the following issues before using birth control pills to treat your acne:
Convenience: The pill is available only by prescription and you should take it at the same time each day.
Cost: The pill can cost anywhere from $15 to $50 per month.
Side effects: The hormones in the birth control pill can have serious side effects, especially for women who smoke and are older than 35 years of age. Side effects include , , and . Less serious side effects of the pill may include , , , , and irregular periods.
Your age and health conditions: Your age and other health conditions may prevent you from being able to take the pill. For example, if you have , if you are older than 35 and smoke, or if you take certain antiseizure medications, birth control pills may not be right for you.
The pill may be a good solution for troublesome breakouts, regardless of your need for birth control. But the pill is not right for everyone. There are other acne treatments that may be more appropriate for you. Talk to your healthcare provider and together you can decide the best acne treatment for you.
Which Birth Control Pills Can Help Reduce Acne
If girls and women who have acne use the birth control pill as a form of contraception, it may also have a positive effect on their complexion. Various types of pills can help reduce acne. There is not much difference between the different birth control pills.
Acne is the most common skin condition in teenagers. Most boys and girls will have acne to some degree during puberty. Clearly visible, persistent acne can be very distressing for teenagers, and affect their self-esteem. As a result, many boys and girls try out all sorts of things to try to get rid of their pimples.
Read Also: How Do I Get Rid Of Back Acne
Which Birth Control Should I Use For My Acne
All low dose combination pills can be used for the treatment of acne. Most often, your practitioner will recommend a standard, low dose combined birth control pill like alysena/alesse, mirvala/marvelon or Tricira Lo.
These tend to be very effective in treating acne, and using a low dose of estrogen tends to reduce other side effects like mood changes, nausea, or breast tenderness.
There are some newer formulation of combined pills with progestins that are possibly better for acne. In some studies, combined birth control pills containing drospirenone performed better at reducing acne. However, this form of birth control has possibly been correlated with increased risk of blood clots.
Also Diane-35/cyestra-35 contains cyproterone as the progesterone component, which is also commonly used to treat acne. This medication also has a slightly higher amount of estrogen in it, which is why it might work more effectively for acne.
Progestin-only birth control or âmini-pillsâ like Movisse/Micronor do not typically work against acne, as progesterone alone can actually cause increased androgenic activity, and increased acne.â
How Birth Control Can Change Your Skin
Here in the beauty department, we’ve already told you about one particular pill that could help with your acne. You know it as Accutane, and while it certainly works for most who try it, it’s a pretty major and serious commitment.
But there’s another pill you can take that’s a lot less medically controversial. Yes, you guessed it: birth control. Going on “the pill,” as it’s called, can totally change your skin by regulating your hormones, which is crucial for young women who are still developing, or whose bodies are still adjusting from their very first period.
“The pill contains the same hormones that your body makes, called estrogen and progestin, just in different amounts, so it can override your body’s signals to release an egg . Consequently, it also lowers your body’s testosterone level, which in turn can reduce acne,” says Dr. Jennifer Ashton, OB-GYN and senior medical contributor for Good Morning America.
Testosterone is the male hormone that, as we know by now, increases our oil production. And as celebrity esthetician Renée Rouleau explains, “oils breed bacteria, and bacteria leads to breakouts.” So the theory is, if testosterone goes down, so does acne.
Don’t Miss: What Is Chest Acne Caused By
Can The Birth Control Pill Cause Acne
It is very important to differentiate between the two different kinds of birth control: combination birth control pills are different in make up than mini-pills. Where combination birth control pills use both estrogen and progesterone, mini-pills only contain progesterone. For that reason, mini-pills are not effective in treating acne. It is the estrogen in the pills that largely helps to offset the testosterone in the body. Not only do progesterone-only pills not treat acne, they can actually cause acne as a side effect of the pill.
This is another reason why it is important to consult with an experienced dermatologist, such as Dr. Green, before going on the pill so you are being prescribed a pill that actively help your acne. The birth control shot is another form of birth control that uses only progesterone and therefore does not help with acne. There is also one combination birth control pill that can cause acne as a side effect of the pill and that is Lo Loestrin. Lo Loestrin contains norethindrone acetate, which can lead to breakouts.
What Happens To Your Face When You Stop Birth Control
Many women are starting to use birth control to reduce or eliminate acne. Therefore, if you stop using hormonal contraceptives as part of the postnatal control syndrome, they can kick in again. Before she took the pills, Alice had never had acne. It was a new fight that left her stunned and confused.
Read Also: What Causes Acne Between Eyebrows
Birth Controls Effect On Acne
The hormones in combination birth control pills can help reduce acne. The pills decrease the circulation of androgens, which decreases the production of sebum.
The pills must contain both estrogen and progestin to be effective against acne. The minipill only contains progestin, so it doesnt improve acne.
Many combination birth control pill brands are available. Each contains its own variation of hormones. Pills prescribed for acne should contain progestin with low androgenic possibility. This means the progestin has less androgenic side effects, such as oily skin and acne.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the following pills for use in the treatment of acne:
- Beyaz, which combines drospirenone, ethinyl estradiol, and levomefolate calcium
- Estrostep Fe, which combines norethindrone acetate, ethinyl estradiol, and ferrous fumarate
- Ortho Tri-Cyclen, which combines norgestimate and ethinyl estradiol
- Yaz, which combines drospirenone and ethinyl estradiol
However, other combination pills that arent on this list may still help to improve acne.
How To Take Care Of Your Skin While On Birth Control
Whatever your reasons are for starting a new birth control method, it can be a seriously confusing time. Not only are you dealing with a completely new dose of hormones in your body, but youre also faced with a whole crop of side effects you may or may not have seen coming including changes in your skin.
There are two main types of hormonal contraceptives, and they have totally opposite effects. Combination contraceptives tend to make your face more dry, while Progesterone-Only Contraceptives make it more oily. Whatever birth control method you decide is right for you , there are certain things you can do to make sure your skin is properly taken care of. Here are some small things you can do to cater your skincare routine to your birth control, whether its making your face feel dry, greasy, or somewhere in between.
How To Treat Your Skin On Combination Contraceptives
Stick With Your Topical Treatments
While combination contraceptives can work miracles on your skin, theyre not a solo solution. Just because youre on a seemingly magical acne pill it doesnt mean you can skip out on your skincare routine. Your best bet is to stick with whatever topical solutions you may have already been using to treat your acne, like spot treatments, benzoyl peroxide, and salicylic acid.
Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize!
How To Treat Your Skin On Progesterone-Only Contraceptives
Use A Gentle Cleanser
Pick The Right Toner
Skip The Moisturizer
You May Like: How To Cure Genetic Acne
Which Birth Control Pills Are Approved To Treat Acne
The Food and Drug Administration has approved 4 birth control medications to treat acne:
Each one of these contains a combination of the hormones estrogen and progestin. Progestin-only birth control or mini-pills like Camila and Micronor do not work against acne. Besides these 4 brands, your provider may prescribe other birth control pills to improve acne, as long as they contain estrogen.
How Birth Control Works As An Acne Treatment
Healthcare providers have been prescribing birth control pills as an acne treatment for several decades, with the FDA even recommending several oral contraceptives as acne treatments as well as for birth control purposes.
The way birth control works as an acne treatment is simple. As a woman, your body produces a small quantity of androgenic hormones such as testosterone. These hormones are essential for optimal wellbeing and health.
Testosterone, for example, plays a role in everything from your muscle and bone health to your sex drive.
Testosterone also regulates the amount of sebum produced by your skin. When your adrenal glands and ovaries produce too much testosterone, your skin can become overly oily, resulting in more severe and frequent acne outbreaks.
Our guide to hormonal acne explains this process in more detail. Simply put, the higher your levels of testosterone and other androgens, the more likely it is that youll experience acne in the days leading up to your period.
The estrogen and progesterone in oral contraceptives lower the amount of androgens in your body. Lower levels of testosterone mean less sebum production, which means a lower risk of experiencing hormonal acne.
Read Also: How Long Does It Take For Acne Scars To Fade
Potential Side Effects Of Taking Birth Control For Acne
Side effects of taking birth control pills for acne are the same as those of someone who takes the pill for contraception or any other indication. The most common short-term side effects of birth control are nausea, breast tenderness, and bloating. You may also experience longer-term mood changes and changes in libido. You should speak with your doctor about whether you’re a good candidate for this medication given your medical history and to get more information about other possible side effects.
“If a person has a history of a blood clotting disorder, is a smoker, or suffers from migraine headaches, they are not good candidates for a birth control pill,” warns Birmingham-based dermatologist , MD.
What The Research Says
Most combined birth control pills are equally effective in helping acne breakouts. A 2012 review by Cochrane Reviews looked at 31 trials involving the use of birth control as an acne treatment.
After looking at six new trials, the authors concluded that all combination birth control pills treated noninflammatory and inflammatory acne.
The study also suggested there was slight evidence that combination birth control pills containing drospirenone were more effective than those that contained norgestimate or nomegestrol acetate plus 17 beta-estradiol.
Combination pills containing drospirenone were then found to be less effective than those containing cyproterone acetate. This distinction isnt significant enough to favor one type of combined birth control over another, though.
In a summary of this study, the Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care concluded that any claims that one pill can lead to better skin than another should be taken with caution.
A 2018 review confirmed that all of the different hormones in combination birth control pills are effective in reducing inflammation of acne.
Recommended Reading: How To Get Rid Of Acne Scars And Redness
The Contraceptive Pill And Acne
The main reason acne develops is because the male sex hormone androgen is made in larger amounts during puberty in girls too. Inflammatory and non-inflammatory acne can improve in girls and women who use contraceptive pills as birth control. The pills that help against acne have the female sex hormones estrogen and progestin in them. But most contraceptive pills haven’t been specifically approved for the treatment of acne. There are also non-hormonal treatments which can help against acne, some of which have fewer side effects.
The frequency and severity of side effects are influenced by the dose of hormones in the birth control pills. But possible side effects might still play an important role when deciding which pill to use. So it’s good to know whether certain pills reduce acne more effectively than others and what side effects they have.
Does Birth Control Help Cystic Acne
Yes! Birth control is a great treatment option if you are looking to eliminate cystic acne. Cystic acne occurs when the hair follicles get clogged with sebum, dead skin cells, and bacteria, forming an acne cyst under the skin. The infected cyst can become red, swollen, and very painful. The cysts can also contain pus and should not be popped, for the risk that the pus could spread the infection. It is imperative to consult a dermatologist, such as Dr. Green, to receive treatment for cystic acne in order to prevent scarring. Combination hormonal birth control pills work to combat all kinds of acne cystic acne included.
Recommended Reading: How To Treat Acne During Pregnancy
Does Yaz Birth Control Help Acne
Yes! Yaz birth control pill is a combination pill that contains both the hormone estrogen and a manmade form of the hormone progesterone, called progestin. These hormones working in combination work to suppress the androgen hormones that cause the overproduction of sebum. Yaz is one of the four FDA approved birth control pills to treat acne. When you have your consultation with Dr. Green, Yaz is one of the birth control options that are available to you to treat acne. Yaz can also be used in combination with other acne treatments such has topical acne creams. When you are prescribed your treatment plan, be sure to take you Yaz pill at the same time each day and continue with any other prescribed acne treatments.