Many women in their 20’s and 30’s have to learn how to deal with hormonal acne. Even women who never experienced acne as teenagers may experience acne during their adult years. Dr. Schweiger explains that, “Hormonal acne is usually a result of an increased androgen hormone influence; a stronger androgen influence leads to great production of sebum from the sebaceous glands. Sebum is the oil produced by the skin, which can clog up the pores and attract acne bacteria on the skin. The result is an increase in acne breakouts on the skin.”
Women with hormonal acne tend to experience acne flares on the lower face, jawline, back and chest. They may notice that the acne flares correlate with their menses, or they may not see any pattern. Hormonal acne should be evaluated and treated by a dermatologist, who will check any necessary labs and begin the appropriate treatments.
Hormonal acne responds well to a multi-faceted treatment approach. For most patients, this includes prescription topical medications and oral medications, in addition to in-office treatments when appropriate. In-office treatments for hormonal acne include the Isolaz acne laser, Photodynamic Therapy, Red and Blue light therapy, chemical peels, and medical extractions. Oral medications specific to the treatment of hormonal acne include oral contraceptive pills and an anti-androgen medication called Spironolactone. These pills require a consultation with your dermatologist or dermatology PA to determine if they are appropriate for the treatment of your hormonal acne.