You’d hope that we would have outgrown most of our teenage hangups. Questionable fashion choices, bad attitudes, bad boys. But some of them find their way into the here and now: those heart breakers (when will we learn?) and, sometimes, bad skin. Following us into adulthood, hormonal imbalances can lead to skin we'd rather leave in the past.
To find out the signs of hormonal skin and how best to treat it RUSSH spoke with Melanie Grant of the Double Bay Clinic.
What are the telltale signs of hormonal skin?
Hormonal acne is incredibly common and often caused by excessive androgen levels, hormone fluctuations or conditions such as PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome).
It’s usually accompanied by other symptoms such as hirsutism (excessive face and body hair), hair thinning on the scalp, irregular periods, mood swings and weight loss or gain and often appears on the lower face, around the mouth, jawline and neck and will increase or worsen before your period or during ovulation. If it’s caused by conditions such as PCOS it can often persist all the time.
How do you best treat hormonal skin?
We need to find and treat the cause as well as the symptoms so I always recommend that my clients see their GP for an initial blood test to assess their hormone levels. If there is an issue you may be referred to a gynaecologist or endocrinologist to further investigate the cause.
Medications such as the oral contraceptive pill to balance out hormones or androgen blockers such as spironolactone are often prescribed along with a preventative home care regime and regular treatments to manage acne and treat and prevent scarring.