The perimenopause can be a hormonal rollercoaster that can play havoc with our skin as well as our mood. As well as evaluating our lifestyle, eating and exercise habits at this time, it’s a good idea to take a look at our skincare routine.
Many women will find that the products that they have been happily using for years can stop being effective or, worse still, start to irritate their skin. Fluctuating and declining levels of oestrogen can mean big changes for our complexion – it might surprise you to learn that these hormonal shifts can have a much greater impact in skin than chronological ageing. The good news is there is a lot we can do to boost our skin health in perimenopause with a targeted approach and the right skincare products.
So, What Happens to Skin in Perimenopause?
As our hormones start to fluctuate and decline, collagen levels will start to decrease. Collagen is the structural protein responsible for skin’s elasticity - a scary sounding 30% will be lost during the first 5 years of menopause. As we approach menopause, oestrogen levels decline, and collagen production slows down. Skin becomes drier and thinner with a weakened skin barrier. Cell turnover slows rapidly, and skin starts to lose its ability to hold onto water appearing less plump and radiant.
Skin can become more sensitised and prone to irritation. Hormonal imbalances can also lead to breakouts and inflammation that you may not have experienced since puberty. Your skin can be quite confused – dry and irritated on the one hand but breaking out at the same time and it can be hard to know what products are going to be right.
What can you do to boost skin health in perimenopause?
1. Simplify Your Skincare Routine
It can be really tempting to try all the latest products and layer lots of different ingredients, adding more steps in your skincare regime, but this can overload your skin and cause more problems than it solves. In perimenopause, your skin becomes much weaker and prone to sensitivity, so simplifying your routine is a must. Scale it right back to avoid irritation and focus on multi-benefit products that will give your skin everything it needs. Living M is a highly effective two step daily skincare system specifically designed for the unique needs of perimenopausal and menopausal skin. Try THE PERFECT PAIR for everything your skin needs in an easy to use daily skincare duo.
2. Avoid Known Irritants
Because your skin is more prone to sensitivity and dryness as you approach menopause, it’s important to avoid anything that is likely to irritate skin. Living M Skincare has been formulated without any ingredients that are known to irritate skin such fragrance, essential oils, drying alcohols, and sulphates. These ingredients are in many skincare products but they are best avoided in menopause or for anyone with any kind of skin sensitivity.
3. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
As we approach menopause, our skin becomes much drier and loses its ability to onto hold onto water. You need extra hydration to replace lost moisture from the skin’s surface. Use super-hydrators like hyaluronic acid and glycerin which act as humectants and draw water into the skin. Living M QUENCH & SOOTHE SERUM is formulated with 3 different types of hyaluronic acid and glycerin for an intense hydration boost. Also skip the hot showers and turn the temperature down as hot water can further dry out your skin.
4. Protect Your Collagen
Collagen levels start to decline dramatically in menopause but there is a lot you can do to protect and boost collagen levels in your skin. Look for great ingredients that will stimulate collagen in your skin
Peptides are an intelligent skincare ingredient that send messages to your skin to produce more collagen. Use a great anti-oxidant that will give protection to your skin and restore that much needed glow and luminosity. LIVING M COLLAGEN BOOST MOISTURISER is a multi-benefit moisturiser formulated with signal peptides, nourishing natural butters and resveratrol. Found in the skin of red grapes, resveratrol is a super effective anti-oxidant that also acts as a phytoestrogen to mimic the effects of oestrogen on the skin. Use daily and nightly for plumper, glowing, firmer skin.
5. Strengthen Your Skin Barrier
Your skin barrier is the outermost layer of your skin’s surface. It keeps skin health by locking in moisture with a protective layer – basically keeping the good stuff and the bad stuff out. In menopause the skin barrier becomes much weaker, leaving the skin prone to irritation and damage. Look for ingredients that will strengthen the skin barrier. There is a lot of buzz around Niacinamide and good reason for it – it’s one of the most multi-tasking ingredients available and has huge benefits for menopausal skin. It acts to strengthen the skin barrier by boosting ceramide production. At the same time it acts to brighten skin tone, restore lost radiance and boost radiance. It can help prevent hormonal breakouts when used over time. It’s such a goodie we have used Niacinamide in all our LIVING M skincare products.
6. Look for Balance in Your Life
As well as adapting your skincare routine to meet the needs of your changing skin, it’s a good idea to look at your lifestyle and try to make changes to improve your overall wellbeing. Make sure you are drinking enough water (try to aim for 2 litres a day) – dehydration can further dry out skin. Eat a healthy diet rich in vegetables, fresh fruit, whole grains and high-quality proteins. Make moving a priority with a good mix of aerobic, strength and balance exercise.
Try to look for ways to minimise stress as this can take a huge toll on your body, your mind and your complexion. Yoga, mindfulness and meditation can all help. Menopause can be tough on you and your skin but it’s a good opportunity to re-evaluate what is and isn’t working and make changes for a healthier, happier you.