Do Hormones Impact the Appearance of Our Skin?
Do hormones impact the appearance of our skin? In a short answer; yes. Of course other factors come into play, such as sun exposure, lifestyle choices and genetics, but as hormone levels shift so too does the skin.
I’m sure you’re all familiar with the male hormone testosterone (well…hopefully), but you may not be up to speed on what it does to our skin as we move through different lifecycles.
When we’re young we have such nice skin – free of acne, smooth as a baby’s bottom, no random patches of hair. Then we hit puberty. Enter the breakouts, oily skin, and razor burn from shaving. And yes, we have the sudden spike in testosterone to thank for that.
How exactly does testosterone impact the skin? In six primary ways:
- It stimulates the production of sebum (oil) resulting in oilier skin and larger pores
- Increases the skin’s acidity
- Thickens the skin
- Increases sensitivity
- Strengthens facial hair
- Stimulates more collagen production
The lifecycle of testosterone
As we transition out of the teen years testosterone levels tend to stabilize and acne, for many men, will subside. That’s not always the case, but for many the oil production stabilize too. However, we still produce more than women, so it’s important to watch how you care for your skin.
Through the aging process testosterone continues to decline and signs of aging begin to set in. The skin is slower to repair itself, deeper lines will form and skin will dry some. So how do we manage hormone fluctuations impact on the skin? It will require different care as we move throughout life, but at a glance here are a few tips:
- Cleanse daily – use a cleanser with salicylic acid to deeply cleanse pores. This is necessary at any age.
- Dissolve the oil regularly – for those oilier years, use cleansing pads after workouts or midday to clear away excess oil. Look for ingredients like salicylic acid, green tea extracts and eucalyptus oil.
- Exfoliate and Tone – this can be physical exfoliators (scrubs) or acids and enzymes. It will digest dead cells and signal the cell renewal process to begin.
- Rebuild – when transitioning out of the teen years use a skin-building toner with peptides, sodium hyaluronate and stone extract to strengthen and hydrate the skin.
- Hydrate – this may seem counterintuitive when you have oily skin, but drying the skin will actually spur more oil to be produced, so hydrate with a good serum with D2O (Deuterium oxide).
- Protect – all ages listen up! Always wear an SPF with zinc as a natural UV blocker. It will prevent a lot of damage in the future, not to mention the incidence of skin cancer.
As long as you cleanse daily and replenish the skin throughout various stages of life, you will be able to counter against the effects of testosterone on the skin.