According to Dr. Jim Beckman, androgen (the male hormone) causes skin oil glands to secrete more sebum, which is a waxy material that can plug follicles and increase skin breakouts. Too bad for the boys! Unfortunately, when the levels of estrogen (the female hormone) in our bodies increase beyond a certain point, we can end up experiencing many of the same side effects of androgen. As a result, we wind up seeing monthly breakouts because of hormone cyclic increases or imbalance. Too bad for us! As many have experienced, levels of hormones change greatly during pregnancy (which is why we break out so often when pregnant). It turns out this also happens during menopause, when women undergo hormone replacement therapy. This adjustment to our natural hormone levels usually creates hormonal imbalance, which is why we see middle age acne much more frequently now than we did almost two decades ago. Naturally, after learning all of this, the question becomes: how can I deal with acne when my own body is working against me? Thankfully, Dr. B has several helpful solutions:
- Chemical peels are very helpful in treating acne. Even during pregnancy, lactic acid peels are considered safe to use because lactic acid is a naturally occurring acid that is already present in every cell in the body.
- Daily use of the Theraderm Skin Renewal System can alleviate adult acne and even acne during pregnancy.
- For women who still have normal, monthly cycles but suffer from acne, it may be helpful to use Orthotriclen®, an acne hormone monthly system that utilizes synthetic hormones with minimal androgenic side effects.
Though hormonal acne isn’t something that can be avoided for most women, you don’t have to suffer with no solution. By understanding what is causing your breakouts and developing a plan to treat and prevent breakouts, you can get your skin back to its natural, healthy state.