Hormones are a part of life for both men and women, and as they fluctuate they can lead to embarrassing and even painful hormonal acne. This type of acne can occur in your teen years or later in life, especially for women who experience fluctuating hormones as a result of pregnancy and eventually menopause, and who are more likely to experience thyroid problems.
While hormonal acne is not the same as other acne, like many other breakout concerns, you need to find the right skincare routine and possibly make some lifestyle modifications. A skincare professional who treats all types of acne can help you figure out the right approach.
Understand the Signs of Hormonal Acne
Most hormonal acne will appear along your jawline and chin, although it can appear in other places. In addition, a common sign that it is hormonal (and not more traditional acne vulgaris) is cystic acne. It appears as large, irritated, and painful red bumps deep under the skin. It’s also more like to leave a scar behind without proper treatment. If this is the type of acne you’re experiencing, most over-the-counter treatments won’t be as effective, and you will benefit from seeking treatment from a skincare specialist.
Use Quality Skincare Products
Using quality products to treat hormonal acne can help significantly in your ability to control it. Ingredients like alpha hydroxy acid (AHA), high concentration of benzoyl peroxide, and retinoids have been shown to be effective at addressing this painful condition. Your best option is to schedule a consultation with a skincare specialist to identify exactly what you need and find the right products rather than just trial-and-error that could even make hormonal acne worse.
Skincare vs Medication
There are also some medications that a dermatologist can prescribe to help treat hormonal acne. While these can be effective at eliminating or significantly reducing breakouts, they won’t always be the best option. Medications often come with side effects that can be difficult to deal with, and in some cases the medication ingredients may not be safe to take during pregnancy, which is a time when hormonal acne commonly flares up for women.
In most cases, it’s easier (and sometimes safer) to develop an effective skincare routine to address hormonal acne so you won’t have to deal with the side effects of prescription medication.
What About Natural Remedies?
There are a lot of advertisements for “natural” remedies, especially for hormonal acne. While plant-based or natural remedies won’t have the side effects of some prescription medications, there is often very little (or no) research behind the effectiveness of these therapies. In addition, natural remedies that promise to “balance” your hormones often use plant-derived ingredients, which have different hormonal structures than your body’s natural hormones. Natural remedies may also interfere with other prescription medications, so you should never take supplements without first talking to your primary care doctor.
To learn more about products and therapies for your hormonal acne, contact our skincare specialists today.