Hormones and Skin Health: Is There A Connection?

The skin being the largest visible organ in the body significantly affects how we look on the outside. However, at times, our skin doesn’t always look the way we wanted it to.

There are periods in our lives where our skin looks supple and smooth. There are also times where our skin looks so dull, dry, wrinkled, and unhealthy.

Hormones and Skin Health Is There A Connection

How we look on the outside is greatly affected by how our body works on the inside. Most often, these internal changes in the body are brought about by our hormones.

But, the question is, how?

Understanding hormones and body chemistry

As we increase in age, changes in our body chemistry naturally occur – including shifts in our hormone levels. More so, other age-related hormonal changes like menopause, menstruation, and pregnancy can lead to significant changes in our hormone levels. Along with these are other hormone imbalances such as hypo- or hyperthyroidism, diabetes, and many others.

These changes, age-related or not, can affect our skin health and condition. Here are the primary hormones that greatly affects the skin:

Thyroid hormones. How the skin looks externally is dependent on the body’s general condition. Thyroid hormones control the thickness and moisture of the skin, hair growth, and the production of sebaceous glands.

However, during thyroid disorders, skin changes and diseases can be experienced. One of which is hypothyroidism. With hypothyroidism, skin becomes pale, wrinkled, and scaly. Its other symptoms include hair loss, puffy edema, bruising, and carotenemia.

  • This hormone isn’t exclusive to men; women have them too. It is just that testosterone is naturally more dominant and abundant in males. Age causes the estrogen-androgen ratio to become unbalanced. In women, when testosterone levels become too high, it often leads to alopecia or baldness, increased oiliness, adult acne, and coarse skin.
  • To start off, this hormone is not exclusive to women and the ovaries. Though it is primarily produced in the ovaries, it can also be produced in other tissues outside the ovaries, and men have them too. The estrogen group comprises of the estradiol, estriol, and estrone. Of the three, the estradiol is the most abundant in women.

Estrogens help us maintain youthful and healthy skin and hair. It affects the thickness of the skin, formation of wrinkles, and production of collagen in the skin. However, due to disruption of normal hormonal activity, negative effects to skin will be experienced.

Hormones and the skin by the years

Throughout the course of a lifetime, our hormones go different transitions and changes. These changes affect nearly all our bodily systems including our skin health. Here are the different changes in our hormones and our skin as we go through age:

  • Teenage years. During adolescence, the skin usually becomes excessively oily and prone to acne and blemishes due to the body’s primary hormonal peak. During this stage, the body starts to produce sex hormones in large quantities to prepare for adulthood and dramatically impacts the skin.
  • Early adulthood. At age 20s to mid-30s, the hormonal shifts and cycles even out. The stubborn acne and extra oily skin will subside and eventually clear out. Around age 25, the positive effects of estrogen on the skin reach its peak and results to glowing, youthful, and elastic skin.

However, due to the menstrual cycle, the condition of the skin may vary. Estrogen slightly decreases collagen production after ovulation resulting to a not so good looking skin. But, once the cycle starts again, the benefits of estrogen right before ovulation can help the skin bounce back to beauty again.

  • Middle age. Around the late 30s to 40s, the hormone levels drop more significantly. Because of this decline, especially in the estrogen levels, the skin can’t be as beautiful as it loses its ability to repair and bounce back during early adulthood. The elastin and collagen production decreases along with estrogen.
  • At these ages, skin becomes noticeably drier and less elastic. Adult acne, facial hair, and thinning scalp hair may also be experienced.
  • Menopausal period. On the average, menopause occurs in women starting at age 51. During menopause, ovulation stops, and the ovaries produce lesser hormones than before. Estrogen levels undergo a significant decline resulting to lesser and lesser production of elastin and collagen. This decline leads to thinner, less elastic, more wrinkled, and drier skin.

Addressing and balancing hormones

To maintain a healthy and youthful skin at any age you’ll be in, you need to address and balance your hormones. To balance hormone levels for better health and skin, it only takes three simple steps:

  • Maintain a balanced diet that is abundant in fiber, calcium, iron, and vital nutrients. Steer clear of processed and unhealthy food choices.
  • Sleep more. Aim for at least 8 hours of slumber daily. Sleep deprivation leads to numerous cases of hormone imbalances.
  • Seek help. Seek for expert diagnosis and treatment. For healthy skin from the inside out, Natural hormone replacement therapy may be considered.

An understanding of how hormones affect the skin and overall health should be the first step in achieving a healthy skin that can defy ages. Balance your hormones today and experience beautiful skin that knows no age!

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