Understand the connection between acne and hormones
WHAT IS HORMONAL ACNE?
Most people associate acne with awkward teenage years, but for many adults, acne is still part of their everyday lives. While all acne is driven by hormones, “hormonal acne” commonly refers to adult acne. It's more common among women, but does exist among men, and can be identified by a few observable characteristics.
It persists past your teen years into adulthood
It appears primarily around your chin and jawline
It usually worsens around the time of your period
It is resistant to topical products and/or medication
THE SCIENCE BEHIND HORMONAL ACNE
Hormones are chemical messengers that tell your body how to behave - sleepy, stressed, hungry. They also tell your skin how to behave - oily, dry, irritated. So, when your skin (or mood) is erratic, it’s safe to assume your hormones are also struggling to stay balanced.
Healthy, acne-free skin relies on a delicate balance between three sex hormones – estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. Any imbalance can give rise to a domino effect of hormonal fluctuations that lead to acne.
Estrogen is responsible for a variety of functions like menstrual cycle, sleep quality, mood, and skin health. Estrogens can be classified as “good” or “bad.” The “good” are able to leave your body easily, while the “bad” linger, sticking to hormone receptors and causing damage. Since they stay in your body, too many “bad” estrogens can cause harmfully high estrogen levels, creating a hormonal imbalance known as estrogen dominance.
Progesterone is estrogen’s sister hormone. It works — in combination with estrogen — to help regulate menstrual cycle and skin health, by keeping the acne-causing form of testosterone, DHT, balanced. Since estrogen and progesterone work together, too much estrogen means your body has too little progesterone in comparison. When relatively low, progesterone can no longer keep DHT in check, resulting in the hormonal chaos that leads to acne.
Testosterone is the quintessential male hormone. It controls hair growth, libido, weight, energy levels, and skin health. It’s the focus of most acne conversations since it converts into an active form, called DHT, which directly impacts the amount of oil your pores produce. High levels of DHT – caused by low progesterone and high estrogen – triggers an increase in oil production. Eventually the oil builds up, clogs pores, and causes acne.
WEAK LIVER & GUT
When there are too many estrogens in your body, your liver and gut struggle to process and eliminate these excess hormones, which then recirculate through the body, perpetuating hormonal imbalances and acne.
Your liver removes the “bad” things from your body, while recycling all the “good” things. It processes everything from food, alcohol, and caffeine, to chemicals, medications, and hormones. If your liver is overworked, which it often is, “bad” estrogens aren’t properly processed and eventually recirculate back into your system, contributing to hormonal imbalance and acne. That’s why a healthy liver is synonymous with clear, glowing skin.
If functioning properly, the liver packages up all the “bad” estrogen and shuttles it to the gut to be eliminated for good. However, sometimes the gut contains certain bacteria that have the ability to reactivate these estrogens. These reactivated estrogens are reabsorbed back into the body, continuing the cycle of hormone imbalance and acne. This is a main reason why gut health has become such a hot topic in when it comes to acne.
FACTORS THAT IMPACT HORMONAL AND SKIN HEALTH
You may be wondering what causes high estrogen levels in the first place. While genetics plays a role, there are several other contributing factors. Everything from the foods we eat to the products we use impacts our hormonal landscape, and therefore, the health of our skin.
Your genes are like the blueprint of your body, containing individualized instructions that tell your body, including your liver and gut, how to produce, process, and eliminate hormones. Based on these instructions, your body may be more prone to high or low levels of certain hormones, or more sensitive to normal levels of certain hormones, making you more likely to have hormonal imbalances, such as estrogen dominance.
Hormonal fluctuations throughout your cycle can exacerbate existing hormonal imbalances like estrogen dominance, especially during the second half (luteal phase). During this phase progesterone should exceed estrogen, but with estrogen dominance, levels of estrogen may be higher than progesterone, upsetting the natural hormone ratios expected at this time and causing pesky pimples to pop up in the week(s) leading up to your period.
Acne medication can help improve your skin’s appearance, but often creates or worsens hormonal imbalances in the process. Birth control pills contain synthetic estrogens that can contribute to estrogen dominance. Antibiotics can affect the bacteria in your gut, clearing out a lot of the good ones your body needs to eliminate toxins. Since drugs (including caffeine and alcohol) are processed in the liver, a high intake can contribute to a sluggish liver.
One of the biggest influences on our hormones are “xenoestrogens,” a fancy word for synthetic estrogens found in plastics, non-natural personal care products, and even foods, particularly those that are inorganic or processed. These artificial "bad" estrogens look identical to the “good” ones found in our body. They sneak onto our hormone receptors and stay there, causing increased estrogen levels and, eventually, estrogen dominance.
When it comes to hormones, the old adage “food is medicine” couldn't be more true. Diet influences how hormones are produced, processed, and eliminated. For example, consuming animal products containing hormones or antibiotics, or produce sprayed with herbicides or pesticides, can cause a major increase in estrogen levels, while a lack of fibre can make it difficult to eliminate these excess estrogens from your body.
When you’re stressed your body focuses on the production of cortisol, the stress hormone. As a result, your body tends to ignore the production and maintenance of progesterone. The more stressed we are, the more progesterone we lack. As you know, when the body lacks progesterone, it can’t keep DHT balanced, leading to an increase in DHT and oil production, and eventually clogged pores and acne.
Eating well and avoiding stress can help maintain balanced hormones, but many of these factors aren’t in your control. The average person is exposed to thousands of chemicals daily. They’re almost impossible to avoid. So, while many of us do our best to stay healthy, we could all use a little help when it comes to keeping hormones balanced and breakouts at bay. This is where some powerful, natural ingredients can help.
A TARGETED SOLUTION THAT WORKS
The reality is, when it comes to persistent hormonal acne, topical products like cleansers and serums are often ineffective. They only address the surface level symptom, but not the root cause. While they can be a great addition to your skincare routine, long-lasting healthy skin starts from within.
BALANCE is a dietary supplement containing a comprehensive mix of targeted ingredients that work by limiting estrogen build up and supporting healthy liver and gut function. In this way, your body can properly process and eliminate excess estrogens, so you can achieve healthy hormonal balance and long-lasting acne-free skin.
The superpower behind broccoli's benefits
A phytochemical derived from cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli. Helps convert estrogen into a form that’s easily recycled or eliminated by the body, preventing estrogen build-up and hormonal breakouts.
The body's master antioxidant
A compound produced naturally by the body. Oversees all operations in the liver, helping process harmful toxins, like excess estrogens, that would otherwise accumulate in the body and impact your skin.
The body's estrogen eliminator
Once consumed, turns into glucaric acid, a potent compound produced naturally by the body. Helps ensure excess estrogens move smoothly through the gut, for proper elimination and improved skin health.
BENEFITS BEYOND YOUR SKIN
Chances are, if you're experiencing hormonal acne you're also experiencing the many other symptoms that result from hormonal imbalances. High estrogen is a major culprit of mood swings, bloating, irregular periods, and more. By supporting healthy hormone levels, BALANCE not only helps manage your skin health, but also the many other aspects of your health that are impacted by estrogen dominance.
MENSTRUAL & SEXUAL HEALTH
Heavy or painful periods
Decreased sex drive
Bloating, swelling, or fluid retention
Headaches or migraines
Insomnia or fatigue
Proven to support healthy estrogen balance, targeting a root cause of hormonal acne, rather than just the surface-level symptom.
A drug-free solution developed with the expertise of professional biochemists and licenced naturopaths, and certified by Health Canada.
A quick and easy, prescription-free routine that requires just 1 capsule per day.