How to Prep For Period Breakouts
Let's not beat around the bush here. Period breakouts suck.
While it doesn't affect all women, it seems to affect most women -- no matter how good your skincare routine is. And the thing that sucks the most? How pimples always camp out at the WORST times. We're talking morning of the wedding or day before your date bad.
Is there anything you can do to prevent period acne? Skincare products you can use to prep your skin for period pimples or supplements you can take to keep skin clear?
It turns out, there are a few defences you can take to deal with period breakouts so you can keep your complexion shielded from hormonal fluctuations and ultimately, blemish-free.
Why Breakouts Always Seem to Happen on that Time of Month
When you're on your period, you're much more likely to get hormonal acne. Here's why: two weeks prior to menstruation, your estrogen and progesterone hormone levels rise to prepare your uterus for pregnancy. This causes your sebaceous glands to work on overdrive, leading to an increase in oil production, leading to clogged pores and as a result, breakouts.
Going into a bit more detail: When estrogen and progesterone levels rise, oil glands produce more sebum. When that oil mixes with dead skin cells and bacteria, your pores get clogged, which often leads to breakouts.
If you have acne-prone skin, it can be hard to tell whether or not you're dealing with regular acne or hormonal acne. You know you're dealing with period acne if the breakouts appear on your chin and jawline. Sometimes, they can also appear on the neck, chest, back, and butt. Another way to identify hormonal acne breakouts is by their appearance -- period zits tends to be red, angry, and inflamed.
On the plus side, you can maintain clear skin through your period with the right skincare products and few other essentials.
How to Prevent Period Acne
#1: Up Your Intake of Salicylic Acid
Those couple of weeks leading up to your menstrual cycle are when your skin starts producing more pore-clogging oils. To help pores from becoming clogged, keep them clear and uncongested using a cleanser formulated with salicylic acid like Truly's CBD Jelly Anti-Blemish Facial Cleanser. Use this cleanser morning and night, as part of your daily skincare routine.
Salicylic acid is an exfoliator that helps get rid of the build-up of dead skin cells on the surface of the skin. It also helps to remove dirt, bacteria, and grime that has built up on the skin so that pores can remain clear.
Benzoyl peroxide is another effective ingredient for reducing the amount of acne-causing bacteria. However, it is more harsh on the skin than SA so less suitable for sensitive skin types.
#2: Don't Touch Your Face
Since you're bound to be in front of a screen at some point in the day, you're likely to end up touching your face -- without even realizing it.
When you touch your face, you literally drag bacteria and grime from your hands to your skin, which ends up giving you pimples. Keep your paws off!
If you need some distraction, try doing something with your hands like sewing, drawing, or giving yourself a manicure.
#3: Wear Moisturizer
It's a common misconception: why wear moisturizer when my skin's already oily and acne-prone? While your skin's creating more oil than normal right now, it's still important to keep your skin hydrated to prevent it from drying out and compensating by producing more oil.
Just make sure you stick to a lightweight face cream that you can use on a daily basis. You want something that is hydrating without being too thick and heavy on the skin, like Truly's Cream Skin Face Moisturizer. Use this every time you wash your face to seal in moisture and prevent your skin from producing even more oil.
#4: Apply a Retinol Serum
Retinol is pretty much known as a cure-all in the world of skincare. With regards to acne, the vitamin A derivative helps keep pores free of clogging skin cells. To get the best results from retinoids, incorporate them slowly into your skincare regimen.
In the first week, start using a retinol serum twice a week. The week after that, increase it to once every couple of days. By week three, you can start applying it once every day.
Try Truly's Purple Rain Glow Serum for your weekly or daily boost of skin-clearing retinol.
#5: Treat Active Zits Immediately
While acne patches are usually only useful when it's too late, that doesn't mean you shouldn't use them -- even in this case.
With the increase in androgens pumping through the body, there's no better time to be prepared for blemishes that come your way.
Truly's Super Hemp Patches are formulated with exfoliating glycolic acid, hydrating hemp, and anti-inflammatory tea tree oil to help reduce inflammation and redness. They also help speed up healing so you can enjoy a zit-free face in no time whatsoever! Please note, these do not work on cysts.
#6: Consume More Zinc
According to research, zinc naturally supports the function of your ovaries, which helps to lessen excessive production of androgens. What's more, this mineral supplement speeds up the healing process of acne.
Further research also implies that zinc supplementation can help decrease symptoms of PMS and PCOS.
#7: Consider Birth Control
Taking birth control pills helps slow down the skin's oil production by blocking the increase in estrogen and progesterone that occurs before menstruation. This can ultimately quash breakouts caused by hormonal fluctuations. Speak to your doctor before going on birth control to discuss safety and potential side effects.
That time of month brings with it pain, discomfort, bloating and breakouts. If you know how to prep your skin right, you can swerve hormonal breakouts altogether. Besides following the steps above, remember to continue wearing sunscreen to continue providing your skin with protection.
And there is light at the end of the tunnel.
After your period, your estrogen levels should normalize, giving you a beautiful glow and enhanced elasticity.
Speak to your dermatologist if none of the above tips help your period acne situation.