The Best Way To Treat Hormonal Acne According To Dermatologists
Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States. In fact, according to the American Academy of Dermatology, roughly 40 million to 50 million Americans have acne at any one time.
For many people, blackheads, whiteheads and pimples are a normal part of puberty. But for plenty of others, women in particular, acne can be a stubborn problem that occurs well beyond their teenage years.
Enter hormonal acne.
To be clear, a lot of acne is hormonally driven including the kind you may have experienced during puberty but, as Dr. Samer Jaber of Washington Square Dermatology in New York told HuffPost, When most people talk about , theyre really talking about acne in adult women.
Jaber noted that adult acne in women is quite common. It can affect women in their 20s, 30s, 40s and even 50s. According to a study cited by the American Academy of Dermatology, roughly 50 percent of women in their 20s and more than 25 percent of women ages 40 to 49 are affected by hormonal acne. And it needs to be treated with extra care.
Acne And Diet: Tea Vs Milk
Heres a surprising tip: for women, relief might come from a cup of tea! There is some evidence that two cups of spearmint tea per day can reduce the levels of androgens that trigger acne. Want to try it? Drink your two cups per day, but dont overdo it too much can be harmful.
Note that this is only suggested for women who arent expecting. Because spearmint tea can theoretically decrease testosterone, its not recommended for men or pregnant women.
Milk even organic milkcontains precursors to androgens that can kickstart acne in some people. Whats more, skim milk has an even stronger influence than whole milk, especially if youre drinking more than three servings per week. See our Guide To Foods That Can Cause Acne to see how some simple changes can make a significant difference.
She Should Switch The Order Of Her Routine And Put Her Eye Cream Before Toner
While there is nothing wrong with this product, Sobel told Insider that Maria should consider switching the order of her routine and use her Neutrogena’s Hydro-Boost Gel Eye Cream before her toner.
“She should start with a moisturizer as this helps seal in the hydration of the ingredients used prior,” Sobel said. “She’ll get the most benefit of the eye cream if she uses it right after cleansing.”
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What About Conventional Hormonal Acne Treatments
Conventional hormonal acne treatment is indicated if YOU feel you need it theres no medical reason to use it. Its a personal choice. If youre at the point of trying pharmaceuticals which theres no shame in. While Id love you to try natural remedies first, if youre not seeing improvement and severe hormonal acne is taking a toll on your quality of life, other treatments can make a really positive difference. If youre at that point, I recommend starting with topical retinoids and azelaic and benzoyl peroxide, which are generally safe topical options.
Struggling with hormonal acne can affect all aspects of your well-being and you shouldnt have to feel resigned to living with the emotional toll it carries. While it can take time, treating hormonal acne from the inside-out as your hormones find their natural, happy balance will allow your skin to truly heal. But no matter what know you are beautiful. Really.
Be sure to get my FREE 7 -Day Hormone Intelligence Quick Start Guide & 7-day meal plan when you order my book Hormone Intelligence!
Natural Remedies For Hormonal Acne
Certain plant-based strategies can treat mild hormonal acne. However, they may be not as effective as conventional methods, and research on the efficacy of these treatments is lacking. One of these natural treatments is tea tree oil. Although tea tree oil is generally safe, your health care provider can verify whether it will interact with any medications youre taking.
These self-care tips may help clear acne or keep it from getting worse:
- Wash your face gently, no more than twice a day, and after heavy sweating.
- Use mild cleansers or soaps and lukewarm water.
- Avoid exfoliating products or harsh scrubs.
- Dont rub, pick, or scrape your pimples since this can cause inflammation.
- If you wear makeup, look for non-comedogenic options when possible.
- Avoid humid environments, which lead to sweating.
Excessive washing and scrubbing can actually worsen acne, as it may remove too much oil from your skin and cause irritation. In response, your skin may secrete more oil, worsening the acne.
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What Is Fungal Acne Vs Hormonal Acne
Fungal acne and hormonal acne are often confused with each other because both types of acne start in the hair follicles. Fungal acne occurs when excess yeast develops, whereas hormonal acne is caused by excess sebum. Fungal acne can result in whiteheads, itchiness and often becomes red, irritated and inflamed.
How To Cover Up Acne During Pregnancy
Makeup can be the first line of defense. Concealer and foundation can camouflage hormonal acne and discoloration. “I recommend non-comedogenic products that are oil-free, and I encourage diligent cleaning-off of any makeup each night before bed,” says Dr. Nazarian.
Be sure to pick products that do not contain irritating ingredients. “I suggest avoiding parabens, fragrance, oils, and alcohol, as these ingredients can further irritate the skin,” says Aguilar. “Mineral-based foundation powders offer a breathable yet lightweight coverage.”
If you prefer to forgo makeup completely, you can try other at-home tricks. “Ice your breakouts morning and night for one to two minutes to reduce the inflammation and help with painful cysts,” says Brownlee. She also recommends changing your pillowcases daily or every other day and washing them with a laundry detergent designed for sensitive skin.
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Is Tretinoin The Same As Retinol
Take a trip to the drugstore, and you might notice many skin care products boasting the title retinol. Whats up with that?
Well, tretinoin is a retinoid.
Both retinoids and retinol are Vitamin A derivatives that convert into retinoic acid.
Many over-the-counter skin care products contain retinol.
However, a significant difference between tretinoin vs retinol is that retinol is available without a prescription because it is significantly weaker than retinoids like tretinoin.
In contrast, tretinoin is stronger and more effective but requires a prescription. However, you can get a tretinoin prescription online.
Hormonal Acne: Causes Types And Treatments
Hormonal acne refers to breakouts that occur due to hormone fluctuations, particularly a rise in androgens such as testosterone. Although the acne that results from hormonal fluctuations in puberty is typically called hormonal acne, it may affect adults at any age. Its particularly common during menstruation and menopause.
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Four: Find Good Skin Care
There are a plethora of organic skin care lines to address acne-prone skin, from to Renee Rouleau Anti Bump Solution. Check out Credo Beauty and Cap Beauty for more excellent options. This is an important step because if youre giving up the medicated topicals, you will need something to help with skin turnover, pore decongestion, excess oil, and cysts.
How To Solve Cyclical Acne For Good Your Step
The skin is the largest organ of detoxification and one of your top goals for easing cyclical acne is detoxing the excess hormones and other toxins in your body. Here are my top strategies for saying goodbye to cyclical acne for good, and I save the most important supplementing for detoxification and glowing skin for last. Pay special attention to the supplementssection. Targeted micronutrients in the form of high-quality supplementsare what really move the needle on your skin health.
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She Should Opt For A Higher Potency Retinol
At night, Maria typically adds a retinol after her serums. While this is the correct order, adding in a stronger retinol would be more effective for skin cell turn over.
“I’m glad Maria is using retinol in general, however she should consider switching to a higher potency, which will also have great soothing properties,” Sobel said.
Hormonal Acne Vs Other Pimples
Hormonal acne tends to be cyclical. If you have a vagina, breakouts usually flow with your monthly crimson tide. These zits usually appear on the lower face, jawline, and parts of the neck. Regular pimples are much more random and can pop up anywhere on the face.
Forehead and mid-cheek acne are typically not hormonal acne, while jawline acne can be indicative of hormonal origin, says Zenovia. This is because jawline oil glands are highly sensitive to the hormone fluctuations in your bloodstream.
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Does Hormonal Acne Go Away
If you have hormonal acne now, know this: Youre not doomed to live with it forever. All forms of acne, including hormonal acne, can improve over time as your body adjusts to hormonal or physiological changes, Dr. Rodney says. However, in many cases, its a chronic problem that will be tough to get rid of without personalized treatment.
Check For Deeper Causes
We also check for signs of more significant issues that induce hormonal acne. Acne is one of the symptoms of polycystic ovarian syndrome . To find out if this is a potential cause, we ask women about their cycle regularity, weight gain, and unwanted hair growth. If we suspect PCOS, well involve a gynecologist for testing. Early detection and treatment is important to help decrease the likelihood of potential complications such as difficulty with conception, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
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The Purifying Face Mask
Ideal for those who suffer from cystic acne or blind pimples, this 100% vegan face mask is infused with bamboo charcoal, green tea leaves and organic tea tree oil to draw out impurities and refine the look of pores. It also smells like a day at the spa, so that’s always a win!
Try: The Body Shop Himalayan Charcoal Purifying Glow Mask, $35 at The Body Shop
What Are The Common Causes Of Hormonal Acne
Hormonal acne is caused by you guessed it, hormones. So the main reason you’re getting those pesky spots is due to your hormone levels.
There could be a number of reasons, from just the way your body reacts to your cycle each month, hormonal changes caused by pregnancy, after giving birth or menopause, or going on or off the pill. Genetics also play a part so if it runs in your family then you’re more likely to suffer from it.
The pill alters your hormone levels so its common to experience skin changes with it.
Stress can also wreak havoc on your hormones, particularly cortisol which is known as the stress hormone, and so can be a common trigger for hormonal acne.
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What Are Treatment Options For Hormonal Acne
Over-the-counter skin cleansers and face washes may be able to help with mild to moderate acne. Common ingredients to look for include:
- Salicylic acid: Works by targeting the top layer of skin and dissolving dead skin cells, which helps prevent clogged pores.
- Benzoyl peroxide: Helps remove bacteria from the surface of the skin, making it less likely for bacteria to enter clogged pores and cause inflammation.
- Antibiotics: May include clindamycin and erythromycin, which are typically combined with benzoyl peroxide to help keep bacteria on the skin’s surface under control.
Your dermatologist may recommend the following to bring hormonal acne under control:
Foods And Beverages To Avoid
Dairy products, refined foods, and high-sugar foods and beverages should be avoided:
- Milk and dairy products: milk, cheese, yogurt, etc.
- Highly processed foods: fast food, frozen meals, meal bars, sugary cereals, chips, microwave meals, white bread, etc.
- Sweets and sugary beverages: candy, cake, soda, cookies, table sugar, energy drinks, sweetened sports drinks, juice, etc.
The best diet for acne revolves around whole, nutritious foods that fight inflammation. Avoid highly processed foods, sugary items, and dairy.
Research indicates that supplementing your diet with certain vitamins, minerals, and other compounds may ease acne.
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Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser
Looking for a drugstore classic? You should try out the Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser. It is one of the best in this class.
This face wash helps to rid your skin of oil and dirt without causing you any irritations. Also, the face wash is non-comedogenic which is why it is great for sensitive skin.
What do you need to do to get the best of this facial cleanser from Cetaphil? Use it two times each day, morning and evening. After each use, you can add some moisturizer to your skin.
Cerave Foaming Facial Cleanser For Normal To Oily Skin
When you are seeking a facial cleanser for acne and oily skin, theres something you should look out for. You need a face wash that is gentle on the skin and foams. This way, it will help you clear out excess oil and other impurities from your pores.
This is exactly what this Cerave Foaming Facial Cleanser presents you. It contains three ceramides that ensure that your skin maintains its natural barrier during cleansing. Along with this, the cleanser contains hyaluronic acid that keeps the skin moisturized.
The niacinamide present in this cleanser helps to calm and soothe your skin. Because of the foaming, you are sure that this cleanser reaches deep into the pores. Check out the pros and cons below:
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Use Tea Tree Essential Oil For Hormonal Acne
Tea tree essential oil is one of the best essential oils for hormonal acne. It is very gentle and can be used on sensitive skin as it has no side effects.
How to use?
- Add tea tree essential oil in a carrier oil like jojoba oil or coconut oil
- Apply the blend of the oils on the affected areas of the body.
- Seal the area with a bandage
- Let it stay for about twenty minutes
- Wash off with regular water
- Repeat the same process five times a day
Benefits of using tea tree essential oil
Tea tree essential oil has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties and works on reducing the itching and pain of the affected area. It helps in the soothing of the skin and aids in preventing infections.
Always dilute the essential oil before using it on your skin. Take a patch test at the back of your hand to ensure that it is suitable for your skin. If the blend causes itching or burning sensation, wash off immediately.
Add Adaptogens To Smoothies Salads Soups And Other Dishes
Most adaptogenic herbs are available on the market in powder form.
This makes it easy to add them to smoothies, soups, baked goods and much more.
Just keep in mind that some adaptogens have strong flavors that arent always easy to mask.
So, if you choose to add them to things like smoothies, be patient as you experiment to find the right flavor combos.
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How Can I Reduce My Risk Of Hormonal Acne
Though hormonal acne can be unavoidable, there are several things you can do to reduce your risk of getting breakouts:
- Make lifestyle changes to reduce stress, get better sleep and eat a healthy diet.
- Use skincare products that wont clog pores.
- Discuss treatment options with your healthcare provider for persistent acne.
Androgens And Hormonal Acne
Androgens are a group of hormones that are present in both men and women. The primary androgens are testosterone and androstenedione. Androgens are key contributors to your strength, energy levels and fitness, as well as sebum production.
Regardless of gender, testosterone is the most common reason why hormonal acne develops. Women have small amounts of male hormones like testosterone in their bodies, and itâs when your body produces more androgens than it needs that hormonal acne occurs. Itâs quite common for this increase in androgens to happen around menstrual cycles for women.
While hormonal acne is exceptionally common in puberty with hormones changing in adolescents, itâs also quite common in adults. One study found that 64% of people in their 20s and 43% of people in their 30s have acne, demonstrating that adult acne is something many people deal with.
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How To Treat Hormonal Acne
“Preventing hormonal acne might seem like a tall orderit is caused by your hormones, after all but there are a few things you can do, says Love. It requires some lifestyle changes. These breakouts are coming from an excess build-up of testosterone in the body, so you need to get to the root of the cause to determine the right hormonal acne treatment. Ahead, dermatologists share their best tips for how to help treat hormonal acne.
One: Understand That Hormonal Acne Is An Inside Job
The root causes of acne start deep within your body. They dont start at the level of the skin. That means that any changes you make to your skin care routine will only help so much and, if you do nothing else, the root causes of your acne will smolder on. So your first step in easing hormonal acne is shifting your mindset. You can only truly address hormonal acne by understanding it for what it is a condition with internal root causes and then using food, supplement, and lifestyle strategies to address those root causes.
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