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Healthcare For Her: Achieve Clearer Skin

Healthcare For Her: Achieve Clearer Skin

Acne, often regarded as an unwelcome guest in our skincare routines, is a common skin condition that affects millions worldwide. From pesky pimples to stubborn cysts, acne can take a toll on our confidence and self-esteem. Hormonal acne, in particular, is a persistent and frustrating condition, affecting not just teenagers but also adults well into their 50s.[2] Understanding its causes, triggers, and effective management strategies is crucial for anyone dealing with this skin condition.

Together with Bayer For Her Conversations of Care., we're dedicated to empowering women to embrace their health journey. In a recent interview with Dr. Crystal Retuya, a dermatologist at Doctor Anywhere, we gained valuable insights into hormonal acne and how to tackle it effectively.

Hormonal Imbalances and Acne

Dr. Crystal highlights that hormonal fluctuations, particularly around the menstrual cycle, play a significant role in acne development. Moreover, acne isn't just a teenage problem—it can stick around even when you're an adult.[1][2] Dr. Crystal explained, “Acne affects around 80% of the female population.[1][3] It was previously thought that acne is a condition found in teenagers and young adults alone but recent studies have shown that acne still affects females up to the age of 49. And contrary to popular belief, even females with regular menstruation cycles can be suffering from hormonal acne.”[1]

One of the hormones that influences acne flares is estrogen. Estrogen decreases sebum formation and counteracts the action of testosterone, which is a key hormone in acne formation.[1][4]  She also notes, "Just before the menstrual period, estrogen levels are at their lowest, leading to a flare-up of acne for many individuals."[1]

However, hormonal acne is not solely linked to menstrual cycles. Dr. Crystal explains, "Various hormones, including androgens, insulin, and glucocorticoids, alongside lifestyle factors, contribute to hormonal acne."[1] Factors such as high glycemic index foods (white rice and bread, potatoes, cereals, cakes, and more)[5], stress, certain medications, and genetics intertwined with hormonal fluctuations can worsen acne by influencing hormone levels and oil production in the skin.[1][3]

What are some effective skincare routines?

What are some effective skincare routines?

Many of us strive to want clear, glowing skin, but finding the right skincare routine can be confusing. With so many products and advice out there, it's easy to feel lost. Luckily, dermatologists are here to help. Dr. Crystal emphasizes the importance of including retinoids in hormonal acne skincare routines. They help regulate sebum production, reduce blackheads and whiteheads, promote skin repair, address hyperpigmentation and scarring, and combat bacterial growth.[1][3] However, it's crucial to consult a dermatologist for proper professional guidance tailored to your skin conditions. She also advises, "A simple skincare regimen involving gentle cleansing, moisturizing, and sunscreen application can complement medical treatments. Your dermatologist will also be prescribing an antibiotic, oral or topical, to address the growth of Cutibacterium acnes, the bacteria that causes acne formation." Additionally, over-the-counter products containing ingredients like salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide can be beneficial but should be used under dermatological guidance.[1][4]

Are there lifestyle modifications for acne management?

Are there lifestyle modifications for acne management?

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can significantly impact hormonal acne. "Avoiding high glycemic index foods and dairy, and incorporating exercise and stress management techniques can alleviate acne flares," she advised.[1] Lifestyle changes such as watching what we eat, staying active, and managing stress through relaxation techniques like meditation and sports can help reduce inflammation and improve overall skin health.[1][2]

Dr. Crystal also stresses the importance of consulting a dermatologist for proper evaluation and treatment of hormonal acne. She advises, "Individuals experiencing persistent or severe acne, especially in adulthood, should seek medical attention." Dermatologists can assess the underlying causes, recommend suitable treatments, and, if necessary, conduct hormonal evaluations to tailor therapy accordingly.[1]

Hormonal acne is a complex condition influenced by various hormonal and lifestyle factors. If you're struggling with hormonal acne, don't hesitate to seek professional guidance and take proactive steps towards clearer skin and improved well-being. Download the free Doctor Anywhere app now to seamlessly connect with a women’s health general practitioner 24/7 or book an appointment with our wide range of specialists, including dermatologists, all from the comfort of your home. Simply open and use the DA app to start video consultations.

*Bayer supports only educational and scientific contents in all posts.


Complete our short women’s health quiz today and get a chance to win a ₱200 Grab voucher! Plus, enjoy a ₱30 off promo code for a video consultation with a Women’s Health GP.

Complete our short women’s health quiz today and get a chance to win a ₱200 Grab voucher.


1. Retuya, Crystal Karen Go. Interviewed on 15 February 2024.

Bayer approval code: PP-UN-WHC-PH-0023-1

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