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It’s safe to say most women feel uncomfortable when Aunt Flow visits. The menstrual cycle may entail pesky acne the week before and at the beginning of your period. During this time, estrogen and progesterone levels drop, causing sebaceous glands to excrete more sebum, which then leads to oil buildup, clogged pores and breakouts.
It doesn’t help that mood swings often occur during this period. Stress, lack of sleep and a poor diet can aggravate hormonal acne. Read through to find out what products to use to fight hormonal breakouts!
The lower half of your face, particularly the chin and jawline, is a hotspot for hormonal acne. Hormonal changes can cause cystic acne that’s deeper in skin than average whiteheads and blackheads.
What to do
First rule of thumb, hands off! Touching, squeezing, poking and scratching can lead to further inflammation and scars, so refrain from doing so! Don’t pop your pimples unless you’re using a professional tool or have the help of a beautician.
Now, let’s tame it! Here are the key things to do:
Use a mild cleanser
The last thing you want to do is use harsh scrubs that may irritate skin more. In the morning, use a mild cleanser that won’t make skin dry to gently prep your skin for a new day. By Wishtrend’s Acid-Duo 2% Mild Gel Cleanser has a slightly acidic formula featuring 1% LHA and 1% PHA, alongside salicylic acid to effectively clean skin without stripping away its natural oils. When evening comes, use an AHA-infused cleanser like DM.Cell’s AHA Exfola Glycolic Cleanser to help remove dead skin cells, prevent pores from clogging, stimulate growth of new skin cells and ease hyperpigmentation.
Use a spot treatment
Spot treatments with salicylic acid, like I’m from Mugwort Spot Gel, target affected areas. By Wishtrend‘s Sulfur 3% Clean Gel also helps tame hormonal acne. Salicylic acid clears pores, while sulfur absorbs excess sebum.
Applying retinol helps reduce inflammation, prevent pores from clogging, promote skin cell turnover, increase collagen production and improve dull skin. Retinol is best applied only at night because it makes skin more sensitive to UV light. If you’re new to retinol, ease into it by using it every few nights first to see if it irritates, before gradually introducing it into your routine.
Opt for Vitamin C products
To clear up blemishes and acne scars, opt for Vitamin C-infused products for skin brightening effects. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant to treat acne-induced inflammation, reduce hyperpigmentation, smooth skin’s surface and foster healing. Just keep in mind that Vitamin C and retinol shouldn’t be used together since both can increase skin’s photosensitivity! Also, all AHA, LHA, PHA, salicylic acid, retinol and Vitamin C products can exfoliate skin, so use sparingly to prevent over-exfoliation.
Go for an oil-free moisturizer
After face cleansing, go for an oil-free moisturizer. Though most facial creams have some kind of oil, look for those that are safe for acne. Jojoba seed oil mimics skin’s natural oils, and tea tree leaf oil has anti-inflammatory properties to calm redness and swelling.
Don’t forget SPF!
Never forget SPF before leaving the house! UV rays can trigger acne and deepen hyperpigmentation. Go for an SPF of at least 30. Sun essences with a lightweight, serum-like texture work well for acne-prone skin. THANK YOU FARMER’s Sun Project Light Sun Essence SPF 50 PA+++ boasts portulaca oleracea and aloe extract to treat pores and soothe skin.