Can Estrogen In Birth Control Pills Cause Acne
As we mentioned, birth control pills for acne treatment contain estrogen, but some women wonder if the estrogen might actually make acne worse. This is not true.
The main cause of acne is an increase in androgen hormones like testosterone. This increase, which occurs in the week leading up to and during your period, is exactly what birth control pills suppress. Therefore, birth control pills containing estrogen dont cause acne. The estrogen in the pills helps counteract the effects of testosterone.
Birth control is a common treatment option for acne, particularly among young women. However, before you decide to start taking birth control for acne treatment, be sure to talk to your healthcare provider about your previous medical issues and any concerns you have. In general, birth control is relatively safe and affordable compared to other prescription acne medications, and is worth considering if over-the-counter products have not worked for you.
Donât Miss: How To Help Acne Scars On Face
Symptoms Of Progesterone Deficiency
*Progesterone deficiency symptoms overlap somewhat with estrogen dominance because low progesterone leads to a relative estrogen dominant state.*
- Breasts are painful or swollen before period
- Headaches or migraines associated with menses
- Worsening anxiety or mood swings a week prior to period
Both estrogen and progesterone imbalances often play a critical role in the formation of hormonal acne. If you are experiencing other symptoms aside from acne , the overall picture of your symptoms can help determine the root cause and how to go about correcting your hormonal imbalances.
Struggling with hormonal imbalances or acne? Id love to support you! I offer one-on-one virtual holistic health consultations. I also see patients in-person at Whole Systems Healthcare Boulder Clinic in Boulder, Colorado.
For more information on healing from hormonal acne, check out my FREE ebook: 7 Steps to Healing Acne Naturally.
Photo in featured image courtesy of Andrea Piacquadio.
The Link Between Our Hormones And Acne
Before we get to the three best natural treatments for hormonal acne, lets first discuss how hormones trigger breakouts. Bear with me for a moment while we have a mini biology lesson!
Hormones have a major role in the development of acne. Although the exact mechanism behind their powerful influence is unknown, we do know that androgen hormones gum up the follicle by triggering oil production.
Androgens are the so-called male hormones and are present in males and females. The testes, ovaries and the adrenal glands all produce androgens. The most well-known androgens are testosterone and its breakdown product is dihydrotestosterone .
You May Like: Man Taking Estrogen Before And After
Sweat And Menstrual Cycle Phases
Your bodyâs ability to sweat changes throughout your cycle as well. Your basal body temperature increases in the luteal phase . Researchers have noticed that women in their luteal phase show an increase in sweat produced when exposed to warmer temperatures, in comparison to when they were in their follicular phase . This increase in sweating was noticed not just on the face, but across the whole body . If you do notice changes in sweating throughout your menstrual cycle, track them with custom tags in Clue.
How To Maintain Hormone Balance: A Guide For Women 30+ Best Vitamins Hormonal Imbalance
Have you been feeling off recently? Experiencing irregular periods, mood swings, or fatigue? You might be struggling with a hormonal imbalance. Best Vitamins Hormonal Imbalance
Do not worry. Youre not alone. 1 in 4 women will experience a hormonal imbalance at some point in their lives.
The bright side is that there are things you can do to feel and remedy a hormonal imbalance like yourself again. Keep checking out for more information.
Recommended Reading: Hormone Free Birth Control Temperature
Don’t Miss: Pregnancy Estrogen Levels By Week
Testosterone Is Mainly Responsible For Hormonal Acne
Almost all instances of acne are aggravated by testosterone, or an imbalance in the ratio of testosterone and estrogen. Testosterone increases both pore size and sebum production. Estrogen keeps testosterone in check during the fertile days of the cycle, but when estrogen falls the week before the period, testosterone gets an advantage, setting the stage for blemish. The trick is to establish balance by offsetting the ebbs and flows with nutritional, beauty, and lifestyle regimens that stabilize hormonal effects on skin.
Estrogen Skin Benefits For Transgender Women
The full estrogen skin health benefits for transgender women havent been fully studied. However, many transgender women report receiving skin benefits from taking estrogen.
Its common for transgender women to experience skin benefits such as increased hydration, softness, elasticity, and firmness after beginning estrogen.
You May Like: How To Measure Estrogen Levels
Dealing With Menopause Acne: 5 Lifestyle Changes That Can Help
âYou get about 15 minutes between pimples and wrinkles. Enjoy it.â â my mom
Turns out, mom was wrong. While we all expect wrinkles with aging, menopause acne can occur or recur for the first time since our teens. Sigh.
Whether itâs prom night or project presentation day, pimples can suck your self-confidence, and no oneâs got time for that. So, whatâs going on and what do we do about it?
I talked with Dr. David Lortscher, MD, board-certified dermatologist, and creator of Curology. While Dr. Lortscher focuses on individually tailored treatments for acne, he shared with us some information on lifestyle choices that can help women in menopause handle changes in their skin.
How Do Different Hormones Affect The Skin
Theres no single answer to what hormone causes acne in females and males. Different hormones can affect your skin in a variety of ways.²
Estrogen. Estrogen can potentially reduce acne. In high doses, the hormone causes sebaceous glands to reduce in size. This can reduce sebum production, a contributing factor to acne. Lower doses of estrogen typically found in birth control pills dont directly decrease sebum production but have been found to help with acne in other ways.
Progesterone. Progesterone can cause more sebum production. Sebum is one of the contributing factors to acne because excess oil can clog pores and give bacteria the perfect environment to thrive in.³
Testosterone. Testosterone is another hormone that can affect your skin. Its one of several androgens, a group of sex hormones, and it stimulates sebum production in both men and women. Testosterone is one of the main factors that contribute to hormonal acne during times such as puberty.
Don’t Miss: Foods That Cause Hormonal Imbalance
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.
Hrt And Acne: Why It Happens And How To Treat It
Medically reviewed by Kristin Hall, FNP
Every year, thousands of women use hormone replacement therapy to manage the discomfort, hot flashes and other common symptoms of menopause.
Although HRT isnt as widely used as it once was, its still a common treatment thats used by a large number of women. Used effectively, HRT can make menopause easier to manage, with a lower number of symptoms and a reduced impact on your quality of life.
Unfortunately, HRT can also have some side effects, including the possibility of causing you to break out with hormonal acne.
Below, weve explained why and how hormonal acne happens after you begin HRT, as well as what you can do to manage breakouts and prevent acne from returning.
Read Also: Melatonin Dosage For Kidney Patients
Is There Anything You Can Start At The Same Time To Minimize Your Risk Of Acne Flare
Prescription medication for acne, like spironolactone and Accutane, can be safely taken alongside an IUD.
You shouldnt dismiss the importance of a good skin care routine.
Start with the basics, says Green. A cleanser to clean the skin and remove all traces of makeup and bacteria.
Acne-prone types should opt for a gel-based cleanser.
After cleansing, apply a toner to open the pores and allow other products to fully absorb, she adds.
Formulas containing salicylic or glycolic acid are best for people prone to acne.
Follow this up with a lightweight moisturizer that replenishes the skin and hydrates your skin cells, says Green.
The final step is skin-protecting sunscreen.
Once youve got the basics down, you can begin to add in other products, like exfoliators and serums.
Rated For Endometriosis Report
I really started taking this for constant cramping. I had cramps every single day. I switched from trisprintec because trisprintec was giving me 2 week long periods. Loestrin has given me horrible nightmares, insomnia, depression to the point of not being able to get off of the sofa, and my hair is falling out. I took it for a month and a half. Felt better after the first day I quit the pill.
Read Also: Best Way To Take Testosterone
How To Help Prevent Hormonal Acne
Just as some things can worsen acne, some can help prevent it. These tips dont affect the hormonal component of breakouts, specifically, but they can lend a hand in helping prevent acne from happening in the first place.
Eat a healthy diet. Consider reducing your sugar, dairy, and alcohol intake. You might want to track what you eat to see what triggers your acne.
Get better sleep and reduce stress. This might be easier said than done, but you can take simple steps to promote deeper sleep, like putting away your electronic devices 30 minutes before bed.
Choose non-comedogenic products. Make sure your products wont clog pores and look for over-the-counter products that treat acne. Better yet, try Curologys custom cream designed for your skin type.
Stick to a simple skincare routine. We recommend following a straightforward skincare routine twice daily, in the morning and the evening: wash your face, apply treatment, moisturize, and wear sunscreen .
Treatment Of Female Adult Acne
1. General issues
Most dermatological experts suggest a stepwise approach to female adult acne treatment that utilizes different drugs depending on the severity and the type of the individuals acne lesions . Therefore, a careful scoring of acne before treating these patients is essential.
The general principles of this stepwise approach are simple: topical agents for mild forms of acne topical agents plus an oral antibiotic or hormonal therapy for moderate forms of acne topical agents, oral antibiotics and hormonal therapy, or an oral retinoid in severe forms of acne.
The choice of topical agents depends on the type of acne, comedonal or inflammatory, as well as its severity. Benzoyl peroxide and topical antibiotics target inflammatory lesions, whereas adapalene, tretinoin, and tazarotene are retinoids that target comedones. Azelaic acid targets both.
In severe female adult acne, oral retinoids are often the treatment of choice, but teratogenicity and other possible side effects should be carefully considered.
In selected patients, radiofrequency, laser, and light treatments are available but cost and evidence for their long-term efficacy are scant.
2. Treatment of adult acne in hyperandrogenic women
The American Academy of Dermatology includes oral estroprogestin or antiandrogen therapy as second-line treatment in women with moderate or severe adult acne who do not respond to topical and antibiotic therapy , but independently of androgen levels .
Also Check: How Can I Get More Estrogen
Antioxidant Vitamins: Vitamin A And E
Vitamin A and E are both fat-soluble antioxidant vitamins that can protect against free radical damage and the inflammatory process that contributes to acne. Low blood levels of these nutrients have been found in individuals with acne when compared to control groups. Vitamin A and E supplementation may regulate keratinization, and research suggests these vitamins have a synergistic effect, meaning that they may be more effective when combined.
Read Also: Hormonal Test For Irregular Periods
What Are The Benefits To Your Skin From Taking Hrt
Hormones play a role in your skins overall health. Hormone loss as we get older is linked to some of the signs of aging, including wrinkling and loss of skin volume. Thats part of why its so common to see claims that taking estrogen or testosterone will benefit skin appearance and health for people of any gender.
Although many people taking HRT do report seeing skin improvements, scientific studies dont always fully back up these claims. Lets look at how HRT might affect your skin.
What Are The Characteristics Of Hormonal Acne
During puberty, hormonal acne often appears in the T-zone. This includes your forehead, nose, and chin.
Hormonal adult acne typically forms on the lower part of your face. This includes the bottom of your cheeks and around your jawline.
For some people, hormonal acne takes the form of blackheads, whiteheads, and small pimples that come to a head, or cysts.
Cysts form deep under the skin and dont come to a head on the surface. These bumps are often tender to the touch.
Hormonal acne may be caused by influxes of hormones from:
At What Point Should You Consider Using Another Contraceptive Entirely
If youre already dealing with acne or are particularly prone to hormonal breakouts, you may want to consider another form of birth control.
Weigh the pros and cons of each method before making your final decision.
Remember: It isnt a given that a hormonal IUD will lead to or worsen existing hormonal acne.
A doctor or dermatologist can help determine the cause of your acne.
If your acne is due to a hormonal imbalance, an oral contraceptive may work best, states Green.
Pills that contain both estrogen and progestin can help manage acne by reducing elevated testosterone levels. The pill isnt the only form of birth control to contain these two hormones. Theyre also found in the patch and the ring.
You May Like: Male Testosterone Injections Side Effects
How Do I Treat Hormonal Acne
Based on the severity of your acne, different treatment options are available to reduce sebum production, pimple formation and painful inflammation:
- Blackheads and whiteheads: Topical cream .
- Inflammatory acne: Topical retinoid and/or topical antibiotic and/or benzoyl peroxide.
- Moderate to severe acne: Antibiotic and/or isotretinoin .
- Cystic acne: Steroid injection .
Dont Underestimate Natures Healing Power
As you can see, I am very passionate about the topic of hormonal acne because it is often not discussed by mainstream skincare professionals when treating blemished skin.
Although there are wonderful topical products on the market , addressing hormones is a huge component for achieving lifelong clear skin. Not only have I successfully done this for myself, thousands of NAC clients have as well, and so can you. Let us show you how!
You May Like: Best Remedy For Hormonal Acne
Can Too Much Estrogen Cause Hormonal Acne
So say youre acnes getting worse at the middle point in your cycle thats when youre ovulating aka popping out an egg.
Its also when your estrogen levels are highest so surely this means you have high estrogen acne right?
Yes, it could, but in my scientific opinion, the chances are small.
See at this time in your cycle there are other big hormones in your ovarian playground
Youre suddenly also getting big spikes in
- Follicle-stimulating hormone
- Luteinising hormone
Luteinising hormone is super important here because, as a paper published in the Journal of Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigative Dermatology tells us, androgens are secreted by the ovaries under regulation of LH.
You can think of luteinising hormone like a back door androgen although its not an androgen itself, it can cause your body to make more androgens. Boom acne.
And if this wasnt enough, to get an egg bursting out of your ovaries, your body needs to rupture the follicle aka cosy home its sitting in.
We cant open that egg door with our hands and so your body does something incredible.
Ever put a can of cider in the freezer to chill it quick?
Ever forgotten about your can in the freezer?
You run to the rescue but its too late, your can is frozen solid and its also swollen. As the trickles of ice start melting down your ciders sides, it bursts open, squirting itself around like Lewis Hamilton celebrating a Grand Prix win.
Dim And Hormonal Acne
Before we explain what DIM does for hormonal acne, lets dig a little deeper into what hormonal acne is and what causes it.
Weve seen the comedy shows with the teenage character who has pimples all over their face. If you had hormonal acne when you were in puberty, you know that it wasnt all that funny. And you may not have been warned that it can return at any age.
You know those blackheads, whiteheads, or tumor zits that come up on the lower part of your face, like the bottom of your chin and jawline? Thats hormonal acne. It can also come in the form of cystic acne that forms deep under the surface of the skin and never comes to a head.
Hormonal Acne may be caused by the roller coaster of hormones that come from:
This hormone roller coaster can aggravate acne issues by increasing:
- Oil production in the pores
- Overall skin inflammation
- Production of acne-causing bacteria called Propionibacterium acnes
- Clogged skin cells in hair follicles
DIM helps rebalance your hormones as well as decrease sebum production, which can significantly reduce acne flare-ups. Best results happen when you combine DIM with dietary and lifestyle changes. Hormonal acne is a symptom of hormonal imbalance. Working with a doctor can help you uncover the underlying cause of your hormonal Acne and address it.
Don’t Miss: What Are Signs Of Low Testosterone