Believe it or not, our menstrual cycle is more than just one week of painful cramps and unwanted breakouts. The cycle lasts the whole month - but every week our bodies are in a different phase, meaning our hormones fluctuate more than we know it. This is why recently, the idea of syncing our skincare with our cycle has been all over the place, because clearly, skin needs different products for different weeks. Here's why this method can be a game-changer.
"Throughout your adult life, hormonal imbalances can spill out into physical issues," explained a leading expert in hormones, Dr. Martin Galy. One of these symptoms can be acne which is typically at its highest during your period. So for that week, the skin may need harsher products than, let's say, the following week when our breakouts have calmed down.
One company that has tried to tackle this approach is Faace. Their main focus is their mask which is very straightforwardly labeled. There is 'Tired Faace,' 'Sweaty Faace' and 'Period Faace.' The latter includes ingredients to reduce sebum production, soothe the skin and reduce inflammation - it's clearly meant for the skin when a person is on their period. The founder Jasmine Wicks-Stephens explained," 'As an all-female office, periods were often a topic of conversation, but we couldn't find anything that directly spoke to that concern and was really easy to use."
While this all sounds great, there are a few skeptics who wonder how just external products can be helpful for healing the internal issue that causes these breakouts. But according to a few dermatologists, this isn't just an internet trend, it can actually work! Dr. Ifeoma Ejikeme, an advanced cosmetic doctor, revealed that our cycle has two major stages. "The first half is when your oestrogen [the fertility hormone] levels are highest, and generally when the skin looks its best – dewy, glowy (oestrogen helps the skin retain water) and more balanced." The problems usually come in the second stage, "During the second half, after ovulation, is when progesterone starts to dominate, causing your oil-producing sebaceous glands to ramp up their activity. That glow can quickly turn into unwanted shine." Essentially the extra production of sebum causes issues on our skin barrier, and here is when the harsher, more acne-geared products would be used. Dr. Emma Wedgeworth explained that it may be good to use different products throughout the month, "I'm in favor of responding to your skin, because it's dynamic." Check out her Instagram for more tips!