Menopause is a period in a woman’s life where there is a cessation of menstrual flow as a result of a natural depletion of ovarian oocytes due to aging. It is a universal and irreversible part of the aging process for every woman. A range of symptoms are often experienced which include hot flushes, insomnia, mood changes, headache, weight gain and bloating. A lot of menopausal women also battle with several issues with their skin ranging from dry skin, wrinkles, dull skin to acne.
At menopause, our skin starts to produces slightly less collagen and elastic fibres. Collagen is the supportive protein structure of the skin, and elastic fibres provide the ability to bounce back. So the drop in collagen and elastic fibres accelerates wrinkling and sagging.
Here are some common skin care problems in menopause as well as our tested and trusted recommendations:
- Oily skin/ adult acne: During menopause, there is depletion in oestrogen levels which can lead to a dominant rise in testosterone [produced by the adrenal glands] levels. Testosterone stimulates the sebaceous glands to secrete sebum leading to oily skin and in some cases onset of adult acne.
- Salicylic acid cleansers can help reduce oil production without drying out your skin.
- Retin A/ retinoids are derivatives of vitamin a and have been scientifically proven to help boost exfoliation of the outer layer of skin and stimulate the production of collagen in the deeper layers of the skin. They are also very effective for reducing fine lines, uneven skin tone and improving skin texture (try out the ageless total retinol-a crème).
- Medications such as spirinolactone which is an androgen blocker may also be recommended by your doctor.
- Hyperpigmentation/ uneven skin tone: Oestrogen exerts a regulatory effect on the production of melanin however as a result of the depletion of oestrogen, there tends to be an increase in melanin synthesis especially to areas that have been exposed to uv rays over the years.
- The need to include a broad spectrum sunscreen into your skincare routine cannot be over emphasised. Remember to also reapply every two hours(try out the prevention+ sunscreens available in SPFs 30,32 and 50).
- Chemical peels can also be done to correct hyperpigmentation.
- Retinoids can also help with this.
- Facial hairs: As mentioned earlier, there can be a dominant increase in testosterone which can lead to the appearance of facial hairs in some women.
- We recommend laser hair removal for the dark hairs and electrolysis for the grey hairs if any. Plucking, tweezing and waxing would only result in a rough, bumpy, hyperpigmented skin which could be difficult to correct sometimes.
- Sagging skin and loss of volume: This is almost synonymous with aging. The depletion of oestrogen levels in menopause lead to a loss of supportive fat below the skin of the face leading to a somewhat drooping appearance.
- Invest in dermal fillers. Most of these injectables contain hyaluronic acid which is a natural key component of the dermis which is responsible for the elasticity and resiliency of the skin. Dermal fillers can easily take ten years off your look. Ensure this is done by a skilled medical practitioner.
- We also recommend the ageless total pure hyaluronic filler which is a serum rich in hyaluronic acid, vitamin B5 and vitamin E.
Most importantly, ensure you consume nutritious meals, reduce alcohol consumption, quit smoking and consumption of processed foods. We also encourage women to seek for professional help while in their perimenopausal phase, this would certainly make your menopausal journey a whole lot easier.
Remember, aging is inevitable and we should all learn to embrace this beautiful, natural process.