Periods, a gift that keeps on giving?
When your period comes to visit, it brings gifts: bloating, fatigue, and even the dreaded skin break-out. The cause of the oily complexion and magnified pores that suddenly surface? It's actually our hormones.
As our hormone levels shift from the more female oriented (like estrogen and progesterone) to the more male oriented (like testosterone) during our cycle, our oil glands go into overdrive, pores blow up, and zits emerge.
Your skin has a hormone cycle, and we've broken it down for you.
The spotty stage
At day 1 (the first day of your period) you're probably already in the acne-prone arena. This is when you need to be extra diligent with your cleansing routine, take your makeup off at night and in the morning, and avoiding greasy foods. Work up a sweat (as long as you wash your face afterwards!) and up your intake of greens which stimulate and support detoxification to help unclog pores which when blocked, could become spots.
• Double-cleanse at night.
• Increase exfoliation by using products that remove dead skin cells and brighten skin.
• Clay face masks are great at this time for clearing out impurities.
The dry stage
By day 5 of your period your skin can become dry and flaky. Gentle exfoliation and moisture-retaining skincare will help protect and repair the skin's barrier, and be sure to hydrate it from the inside-out. Drink plenty of water and eat healthy fats, like oily fish, seeds and avocado.
• Choose calming, soothing ingredients and avoid active facials and potent products. Look for anti-inflammatory properties like green tea and aloe vera.
• Use a vitamin C serum to restore a healthy glow without irritation.
• Treat your skin to a creamy hydrating face mask to prevent dehydration.
The healthy stageFor the middle part of your cycle your complexion should be at its clearest so embrace it with minimal makeup. At first you'll start to get your glow back and blood circulation increases so ingredients are absorbed much better during this time. To keep your skin happy keep your stress levels low, get sufficient sleep and exercise.
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