When we seek to tackle bad skin, we typically consider overhauling our skincare regimen and switching out ointments. But the saying that beauty starts from within rings true, especially when addressing skin problems like dry patches, blemishes, and discoloration. What you may not have been considering in your skincare routine is how the state of your hormones is manifested on your face. Vaia Pappas of Vaia Beauty, a trained herbalist with 20 years experience as a therapist, explains, "If your hormones are out of whack, your complexion will be the first to tell you." On MyBody+Soul, Pappas outlines the major hormones at work and how they express themselves through your skin.
We've outlined three of our top skin concerns below accompanied by Pappas's advice for rebalancing your hormones and clearing your skin in one fell swoop.
Overly dry or overly oily skin: If your skin's new normal is excessively dry or unusually oily, your hormones could be to blame. High cortisol levels "can cause dryness or too much oil production and redness," says Pappas. Lower your cortisol levels by reducing the amount of stress in your life. Pappas recommends exercise, meditation, and relaxation techniques.
Dark circles under your eyes: Just as elevated levels of cortisol can be dangerous, low levels can be just as detrimental to the body, leading to under-eye discoloration and a dull complexion. Being mindful of minimizing the chemicals you come into contact with can help to rebalance hormones. "Chemicals can disrupt hormone regulation, so minimize your exposure by using natural cosmetics and cleaning products, aluminum-free deodorant, glass food storage containers (rather than plastic), and by buying organic produce where possible," advises Pappas.
Breakouts: There are a number of ways that hormone imbalance can contribute to acne. Excess testosterone can lead to acne on the face, chest, shoulders, and back due to the overproduction of sebum. Pappas recommends a diet of antioxidant-rich foods and green leafy vegetables to "aid liver function" and "help flush out excess hormones."
Next up, discover which foods can help regulate your hormones naturally.