The various stages of our physiologic lives are largely defined by the hormonal shifts we experience. These hormonal fluctuations play a major role in the appearance and overall health of our skin. The severity of skin changes can vary widely from individual to individual, however, we all experience similar symptoms and changes as we go through life.
Perimenopausal Hormonal Skin Changes
Perimenopause refers to the period before menopause when a woman’s ovaries gradually begin producing less estrogen. Estrogen levels are tied to collagen production, so this shift leads to wrinkles and overall skin aging (lack of elasticity, dullness, and volume shifts).
Estrogen and progesterone levels stop going up and down in a regular way over the course of a woman’s cycle. During perimenopause, these female hormones begin spiking and dropping more quickly which can impact one’s emotions, body, and skin health.
Testosterone is the main culprit of skin issues during this physiologic stage. This is due to estrogen production decreasing while testosterone production continues at its regular rate.
Perimenopausal skin conditions are a natural part of the aging process, but preventative skin protection and care can help improve the skin’s overall health.
Perimenopausal Preventative Skincare
Dr. Zenovia’s top hormonal-age preventative skin tip is to incorporate sunscreen and active retinol into your skin regimen.
Sunscreen for Perimenopausal Skin
Sunscreen should be used daily, as the last step in your AM routine. This applies even if you are spending the day indoors! Dr. Zenovia recommends applying an SPF with a minimum of 30 which will block out 98% of UV rays (anything higher provides that extra 2% which isn’t significant).
Retinol for Perimenopausal Skin
One of the most researched and proven actives in dermatology for anti-aging and acne, retinol works by increasing the cellular turnover rate of keratinocytes. As a result, the cells found on the outermost layer of the skin (stratum corneum) are shed in a regular, ordered, and systematic fashion. This regulated shedding process makes the skin appear smooth, hydrated, and more light-reflective (basically sheen and dewy). Retinol also exfoliates older keratinocytes which helps unclog pores. With long-term usage, retinol can also help support collagen production in the dermis and inhibit the endogenous breakdown of collagen.
Dr. Zenovia’s Advanced Retinol Night Repair Treatment features highly concentrated All-Trans-Retinol Technology. This alcohol version of the powerful retinoic acid helps support collagen synthesis and deeply penetrates the epidermis through a unique micro-polymer delivery system to support cellular turnover. Our micro-polymer delivery system is key in stabilizing this delicate molecule, making it both penetrable and giving it a slow, steady absorption. This mindful chemistry was purposeful and allows for amplified cellular turnover without the typical flaking and drying nature of most retinols on the market. Dr. Zenovia recommends using a pea-sized amount of retinol 3-5 times a week at night, after cleansing, and before moisturizing (retinol can also be combined with your moisturizer).
One of the most researched and proven actives in dermatology for anti-aging and acne, retinol works by increasing the cellular turnover rate of keratinocytes. As a result, the cells found on the outermost layer of the skin (stratum corneum) are shed in a regular, ordered, and systematic fashion. This regulated shedding process makes the skin appear smooth, hydrated, and more light-reflective (basically sheen and dewy). Retinol also exfoliates older keratinocytes which helps unclog pores. With long-term usage, retinol can also help induce collagen production in the dermis and inhibit the endogenous breakdown of collagen.
Perimenopause & Skin Dryness
Aging, menopause, and a woman’s menstrual cycle are all linked to the production of the hormone estrogen. With declining estrogen levels, the production of elastin, collagen, and hyaluronic acid is affected which leads to trans epidermal water loss, resulting in dry, dehydrated skin. Moisturizing the skin morning and night is imperative for preventing and managing dryness. An effective moisturizer protects the skin barrier and maintains hydration levels.
Dr. Zenovia’s Peptide + Ceramide Repairing Moisturizer contains a unique combination of bio-equivalent ceramides, potent humectants, and emollients to help attract, retain, and distribute moisture to fortify the skin’s protective barrier and combat dryness for a glowing, radiant complexion.
Dr. Zenovia’s Top Tip: Be sure to contact your local board-certified dermatologist if dryness persists.
Perimenopause & Hormonal Acne
Due to the hormonal shifts taking place, it is common for perimenopausal women to experience hormonal acne, especially along the chin and jawline region. To prevent breakouts, Dr. Zenovia recommends using skincare and makeup products that are non-comedogenic which won’t clog the pores.
Because the skin is thinner during this life stage, using acne products formulated for teenagers may be too harsh for the skin. To help reduce and prevent future hormonal breakouts, Dr. Zenovia recommends using a cleanser with 5-10% Benzoyl Peroxide several times a week (daily use may be too harsh). Dr. Zenovia’s 10% Benzoyl Peroxide Acne Cleanser gently removes everyday impurities and excess sebum while providing the skin with vital skin-soothing nutrients. This cleanser is infused with a powerful, yet gentle dose of ultra-micronized 10% Benzoyl Peroxide to eliminate any possible irritation. If you are new to using Benzoyl Peroxide, introduce it gradually into your skincare regimen. If excessive dryness or irritation occurs, reduce application.
Spot treatments with Benzoyl Peroxide can help target trouble areas, including the jawline and chin. Dr. Zenovia’s 5% Benzoyl Peroxide Acne Spot Treatment is clinically-formulated to specifically target and clear stubborn hormonal acne. Medical-grade Bakuchiol and Aloe Vera work together to help soothe acne-prone, sensitive skin.
Dr. Zenovia’s Top Tip: If at-home treatments don’t seem to be working after a few months of use, book an appointment with a board-certified dermatologist who may suggest hormonal treatments.
Phytoestrogen Hormonal Skincare for Perimenopause
Dr. Zenovia’s topicals are different from other over-the-counter skincare products on the market because our formulations are created with a safe, plant-based, estrogen-mimicking molecule known as Geinstein. With hormonal fluctuations having a direct effect on the skin, Geinstein helps the skin receive the hormonal support it needs resulting in increased hydration and fewer acne flare-ups.
The REG-ulate360 Complex™, a proprietary blend of the phytoestrogen Genistein along with a cocktail of antioxidants is safe, doesn’t have any downstream effects, and will not get absorbed systemically.