Hormonal acne is fluctuations in your hormones. It affects adults of any age and is more common in women. It’s estimated that approximately 50 percent of women ages 20 to 30 have hormonal acne.
What are the symptoms of hormonal acne?
Hormonal adult acne typically forms on the lower part of the face, most commonly:
Hormonal acne can look like blackheads, whiteheads, but more commonly cysts. Cysts form deep under the skin and don’t come to a head on the surface. These bumps are often tender to the touch.
Hormonal acne may be caused by influxes of hormones. Hormone fluctuations may aggravate acne issues by increasing skin inflammation, oil (sebum) production in the pores, clogged pores, and production of acne bacteria.
Over-the-counter (OTC) products usually aren’t effective because cysts form deep under the skin, most topical medications do not penetrate that deep. Oral medications work from the inside out regulate hormones and clear up the skin. Common options include oral contraceptives and anti-androgen medications.
Oral contraceptives target the hormones that contribute to acne. This can be especially helpful during peaks in hormones during ovulation.
Anti-androgen drugs work by decreasing the male hormone: androgen. Both men and women have natural levels of this hormone. Too much androgen, though, can interfere with hair follicles that regulate skin cells and increasing oil production. Although spironolactone is primarily used to treat high blood pressure, it has anti-androgen effects. It prevents your body from producing more androgen and allow hormone levels to stabilize.
Retinoids, are derivatives from vitamin A, and are used in mild cases. A prescribed medication is often the most effective.
Can I treat hormonal acne naturally?
Presently nothing has been proven to produce significant results. Tea tree oil works by decreasing inflammation that can contribute to acne and may relieve mild acne. Alpha hydroxy acid derived from citrus fruits can help remove excess dead skin cells from clogged pores. Green tea is known for decreasing inflammation in the body and may help reduce inflammation caused by acne.
Is diet contributing to hormonal acne?
Contrary to popular belief, junk food alone doesn’t cause acne. However limiting processed foods, sugar and low fat dairy products may be beneficial.
What can I do to clear hormonal acne?
It’s important to establish good skincare routine. Wash your face once or twice a day with mild cleanser. Use only noncomedogenic products to reduce risk of clogged pores. If your acne persists, talk to a your dermatologist.