Skincare for menopause can mean rethinking your daily regimen.
The transition during this time can be made much more graceful if you have an understanding of the changes affecting you and how you care for your skin.
Menopause and the immediate years leading up to it mean fluctuations in the reproductive hormones of estrogen, progesterone and testosterone with an eventual reduction of each. During this time your body’s largest organ, the skin, goes along for the ride leading to some unexpected changes.
Wrinkles, Dry Skin and Redness
We all expect to eventually look older, but so suddenly? A reduced production of collagen and elastin is a normal part of the aging process. Menopause accelerates that process. Collagen provides the supportive structure of the skin while elastin is the protein that helps skin bounce back. Together, they are responsible for keeping the skin firm, smooth and youthful.
Menopausal change also results in thinning of the skin, slower cell turnover rate and less production of natural oils, all leading to less hydrated skin. Skin can become itchy and even sensitive and flushed with redness.
Acne, Blemishes and Breakouts
This new balance of hormones, particularly higher proportional testosterone levels with decreased estrogen, can create an environment for excess facial oil production. Acne can appear as small, tender cysts often at the lower corners of the mouth. Menopausal acne tends to be a shorter-term concern with more fluctuation than the issue of aging, dry skin.
What to Avoid
If you have ever considered reducing the amount of synthetic chemicals in your skin care regimen, now is the time. These often harsh chemicals burden your system at a time when it needs nourishing the most. See the post on safe skin care for important yet simple ways to protect yourself.
Absolutely avoid endocrine disrupting ingredients such as parabens. Phthalates are also endocrine disruptors that often hide under the ingredient listing “fragrance.” These further dis-balance the hormones potentially leading to serious health issues. Also avoid harsh ingredients that can aggravate dry, irritated skin including triclosan, sulfates, propylene glycol.
What to Look For
Skincare for menopause should include natural ingredients that promote well-being rather than deplete health. Beyond safe products look for anti-aging ingredients since signs of aging effect us all. These are often antioxidents. However, there are many other highly beneficial age-defying botanicals as well as luscious oils and butters. When redness, irritation and blemishes hit, there are excellent solutions as well.
Below are fabulous ingredients to look for that address these multi-issues. Select the ones that fit your specific needs.
- For dryness and wrinkles: Find products with hydrating aloe and oils such as argan, coconut, jojoba, avocado or vitamin E. Shea butter works exceptionally well. Ingredients with high levels of antioxidants include pomegranate and berries such as acai, blueberry and cranberry. Antioxidants protect cells from damage and encourage new cell growth.
- For Redness and irritation: Nothing beats green tea and chamomile for calming inflammation. Licorice and barley are also highly effective botanicals. These plant-based ingredients are especially soothing and nurturing for aging skin.
- For blemishes and Acne: Most acne products on the market are much too harsh for mature skin. However aloe, in addition to hydrating properties, is also antibacterial to help keep those blemishes at bay. Calendula and lavender have effective antibacterial properties while gently caring for aging skin. Calendula in particular is excellent for boosting collagen and is high in antioxidants.
Menopause can be a time of beautiful transition. Good skincare for menopause is essential along with other healthy lifestyle habits for radiant, glowing health at any age.
Feel free to leave any comments or questions below. If you would like to learn more about herbal medicine, check out the Home Herb School at www.homeherbschool.com