The Impact of Perimenopause on Skin: Understanding the Changes
It’s not often something you would talk to your GP about, but we understand how important skin changes can be to women, and how it can affect your self-esteem and confidence.
Perimenopause can be the start of many changes due to the fluctuating levels of hormones. You may notice more wrinkles, acne, dryness, itching, dullness, thinner, more sensitive skin, new facial hair and hyperpigmentation.
The Role of Collagen and Elastin During Perimenopause
Collagen – which is the support scaffolding for skin – can decline by 30% during perimenopause, as well as elastin, which plumps up the skin.
Oestrogen is important for the production of both and dropping levels start to cause the problems we see. Changes to your oestrogen and testosterone levels can cause the delightful return of hormonal acne and excess facial hair.
Creating a Skincare Routine for Perimenopausal Skin
So what can we do? A good skin care regime is vital at this stage: with extra treatments on top to manage any problem areas. Some routines can be complex, but keep it simple.
Start with a gentle cleansing product- nothing too harsh, followed by a good rich moisturiser and then the most vital ingredient – sun protection. The higher the SPF, the better. Don’t forget to apply sunscreen to your neck and hands too.
Hydration and Special Treatments for Aging Skin
Hydration is important too – vital to replace the fluids lost by hot flushes and night sweats.
For problem areas, add in Vitamin C products for hyperpigmentation, hyaluronic acid to hydrate and plump your skin and nightly retinols to help reduce the wrinkles and stimulate the production of collagen. Start at low strengths and work your way up, as they can be quite irritating to the skin. If you use any of these products, then sunscreen is a must.
Can Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) Aid Skin Health?
Can HRT help? It may do by increasing your oestrogen levels and hence increasing collagen and elastin production, and balancing the fluctuations may settle acne. However, everyone’s skin is different, and there are many other factors to consider that lead to our skin ageing, such as genetics, sun exposure, environmental pollution, smoking, alcohol, sugar-laden diets, habitual facial expressions, lack of exercise and poor hydration.
Embracing Self-Care During Perimenopause
Perimenopause is a great time for self-care. So take a look at how you care for your skin, and don’t forget the sunscreen!