How your cycle influences your skin
Many of us know from experience: Acne can make us feel uncomfortable in our own skin. Your skin can, at times, even be the reason for low self-esteem. Once you understand what is happening in your body and why acne can also occur in adult women, you can learn to love your skin and your body again.
Acne in adults is hormonal in most cases. Maybe, at certain times of the month you notice that the condition of your skin is getting worse. Especially when you move from the ovulation phase to the beginning of your period. The four phases of your menstrual cycle are normal, natural and inevitable… but acne is not. If you notice acne outbreaks at specific times of the month, this may indicate a hormonal imbalance. Possible imbalances could be: too much estrogen compared to progesterone (also called estrogen dominance) or high androgen levels (male hormones). If you suspect that you have a hormonal imbalance, it is best to ask your doctor or health practicioner for advice.
But why do sex hormones like estrogen and testosterone affect the skin at all?
Well, research suggests that the oil-producing glands in the skin act as their own independent endocrine organs and can respond to messages from hormones like estrogen and testosterone. When these hormones are in balance, they send a message – an “all-clear” signal – to the oil glands in your skin. When the hormones are out of balance, this message is lost…and acne can be the result.
What can we do to cure hormonal acne?
Eat in sync with your cycle phases
Clear, radiant skin begins with what we put into our body. This is because hormonal healing starts within. If you adjust what you eat to your menstrual cycle, it is quite possible to see positive changes in your skin within three months just by taking this step. Flaxseed and coriander are particularly good for helping the liver and colon get rid of excess hormones.
Exercise in sync with your cycle phases
The same cycle-based strategies that work for nutrition also work for exercise. If you tailor your exercise program to the four phases of your menstrual cycle, your skin will glow even more.
Adjust your skin care routine to your cycle
Your skin goes through natural changes in elasticity and oiliness/dryness every month, and the way you care for your skin at each stage of your cycle should reflect and support the condition of your skin. A weekly skin care guide can be very helpful for this step. This routine is a crucial step in putting an end to hormonal acne. The number of days is only a guideline. Adjust this plan to your individual cycle length and the length of your cycle phases.
Day 1 – Day 6 (bleeding)
During your period, try to focus on soothing skin treatments. Moisturizing and soothing masks and collagen masks are your friend in this phase.
Day 7-12 (follicular phase)
If you are planning facial treatments with extractions, try to make an appointment for your follicular phase. This is also a good time for any kind of hair removal.
Day 13-24 (ovulation/first half of the luteal phase)
During this time facials are still okay, but it is best to go for masks rather than extractions. You don’t need a lot of products at this stage.
Day 25-day 28 (the second half of the luteal phase)
This is the perfect time to focus on self-care with all of your favourite products. Use oil-based serums to reduce sebum production. Clay masks can also work wonders during this time.
TIPP: Don’t plan extractions or hair removal in the second half of the month, as the skin is thinner and increased blood flow in the capillaries can cause more swelling.
Boost your micronutrients
Make sure you get the essential micronutrients you need to support healthy skin. In this way you can also optimise your hormonal health. Always remember that clear skin starts from the inside out. Even the healthiest skin care routine in the world won’t be able to change that.
Once you understand how your body really works, you can start making the best decisions for yourself and your body. Cycle tracking with breathe ilo can help you to better understand your cycle and your body.