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20th Mar 2019

Skin acting up on your period? Here’s the reason why

Anna Daly


Brought to you by Cleanmarine For Women. 

We thought spots were just for teenagers.

Clearly not.

Sure, breakouts may have calmed down for most of us since we were fourteen or fifteen, but some of us still struggle on with them. Especially during our period.

Even those of us who are well into our twenties and never experienced acne as a teen can find spots popping up in the lead up to our period. Not fun.

We want to know why this is happening. Why won’t these spots leave us alone? And what exactly can we do about it? We had a little look see because, really, enough is enough. Periods are already the worst without us having to worry about our face too.

It turns out that a lot of these breakouts are actually caused by testosterone. Yep, you heard us correctly. Testosterone. Let us explain (or at least try to).

So testosterone encourages the production of sebum, which is a thick, oily substance that acts as a skin lubricant (so when it’s not making us spotty, it’s actually great for making our skin glow). Testosterone is constantly present in our body at roughly the same level all month but, around the time of our period, the level of two other hormones (progesterone and oestrogen) go down. Here is where we start to see changes.

Progesterone is the main hormone in the second half of the cycle. Like testosterone, it encourages the production of sebum. However it also causes skin to swell and essentially closes your pores. This is why a lot of people will find they have lovely, glowing skin around the third week of their cycle.

Not for long though (sorry!). As your period draws closer, the progesterone drops to its lowest level, so that, before and during your period, the level of testosterone is the highest hormone in your body. Which means, of course, that all this sebum is being produced but now you don’t have progesterone keeping your pores closed so…. You guessed it. Spots start cropping up.

There are a few things you can do to keep the breakouts to a minimum.

Keep to a good cleansing routine – wash gently twice a day and choose water-based or oil-free cosmetics. Try to avoid touching your face – your hands are oily and can get pretty dirty over the course of a day. Also, clean your phone regularly. Every time you put your phone in contact with your face, you’re introducing all that bacteria on the phone to your poor open pores.

However, breakouts around your period are ultimately an internal issue, not a hygiene issue and, while improving your hygiene can help, you might need to look at your diet. Your intake of vitamin B2, in particular, could be important.

Increasing your intake of vitamin B2 (or riboflavin) may promote cellular respiration, which can mean a reduction in clogged pores and, therefore, fewer spots for us (hurrah!).

B2 can be found in tofu, beef, milk, fish, mushrooms, pork, spinach, almonds, avocados, and eggs (so no matter what your diet, it’s an easy one to get).

You shouldn’t just be looking at your B2 levels around your period though. Cleanmarine For Women is an all-in-one omega 3 and multivitamin designed for women that includes B2 to maintain normal, healthy skin and B6, which contributes to the regulation hormonal activity. You can take it throughout your whole cycle to support your skin all month long (now we’re talking!).

We ladies already have enough to deal with, what with periods and hormones and the like. We certainly do not need to be worrying about our faces breaking out in the midst of all that. No thank you.

Brought to you by Cleanmarine For Women.