Common symptoms of women’s ‘time of the month’ do not just include cramps, mood swings and headaches.
Women’s skin can also be at the mercy of their monthly cycle. Breakouts and oily skin are common hormonal symptoms of the menstrual cycle, particularly on the chin and jawline.
Skin is also known to become more sensitive around the time of women’s periods and conditions such eczema and rosacea can flare up.
“Progesterones and androgens are the main culprits in blemishes, because they impact on sebaceous glands which are the oil producing glands in the skin,” Emma Wedgeworth, Consultant Dermatologist and British Skin Foundation spokesperson, told Cosmetics Business.
“In addition, oestrogen levels drop in early and mid cycle, which may account for increases in dryness and sensitivity. Skin cells have a number of hormone receptors within them, so it’s not surprising that fluctuating hormones will influence the nature of our skin,” she noted.
Wedgeworth also said consumers with cyclical changes to their skin should be thinking about their skin care routine all month round.
“If you can boost your hydration and your skin barrier during the month, you are far less likely to experience hormonal-related sensitivity,” added Wedgeworth.
Her other recommendations for tackling spot-prone skin include salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide.
“Avoid oils, rich balm cleansers and heavy long-wear make-ups, all of which are pore clogging. Ingredients such as salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide can be very helpful additions to a skin care routine for blemish-prone skin,” Wedgeworth added.
So, with an entire beauty industry offering products to deal with fine lines and wrinkles to hyperpigmentation and acne, what are the products available on the market that are tailoring their line-ups to tackle the effects of the menstrual cycle? Cosmetics Business finds out.
French beauty brand Typology, founded by made.com’s founder Ning Li, introduced its Woman Periodic designed to be used for the four weeks of users’ menstrual cycle.
The serums include four products that are designed to meet the skin’s needs during the weeks of a woman’s menstrual cycle.
The first product, to be used on the first day of consumers’ periods, includes a blend of hyaluronic acid, bisabolol and cornflower floral water to hydrate and soothe skin.
Week two’s serum gives a boost of vitamin C as the body prepares for ovulation, while the moisturising and astringent properties of the third week’s serum helps fight off bacteria present in the pores to reduce blemishes.
Completing the line-up is a mattifying and anti-blemish serum for the final week of the cycle.
Derived from seaweed, this product reduces skin’s shine and acts as an anti-inflammatory product to reduce imperfections.
Faace, the brainchild of PR boss Jasmine Wicks-Stephens, was founded to help consumers tackle everyday skin stresses, including the monthly onslaught of blemishes from consumers’ periods.
Available in the line-up is the brand’s Period faace product, designed to be used as a priming moisturiser or as a thick mask; it balances dry or greasy skin during the menstrual cycle.
The product’s blend of hyaluronic acid, green tea, lavender and zinc helps to normalise sebum production, soothe inflammation and prevent blemishes breaking through.
Amareta’s has based its entire skin care line on hormonal wellbeing.
For week one of the cycle, when the period begins, the brand has introduced its Petal Soft cleansing balm that cleans skin without clogging pores.
Meanwhile, the Skin Lullaby Ultra Nourishing Cream soothes dryness, dullness and sensitivity.
To tackle the effects of weeks three and four, such as blemishes, the brand has launched its Earth Mother detoxifying charcoal mask, to heal breakouts and balance oil production, while extracting pore blockages.
4. Institut Esthederm
While Institut Esthederm’s new Propolis+ range is not specifically targeted at women’s menstrual cycle, its line is designed to tackle adult acne.
The trio of products are enriched with propolis and salicylic acid to target blemishes and heal skin, while tightening pores.
Available in the line is the brand’s Propolis+ Concentrate Serum, Skin Perfect Cream and Purifying Mask.