Beauty Lifestyle

How Your Skin Is Affected by Your Menstrual Cycle

By Anna Mitsios, Nutritionist, Naturopath and Founder of Edible Beauty Australia

For the majority of women, ‘that time of the month’ tends to warrant unwanted spots and a hint of hormonal acne. You pull out your strongest active serum and hope that trusty concealer will do the trick, but have you ever thought to sync your beauty routine with your menstrual cycle?

In order to combat the flare-ups and inflammation, I recommend switching up your products over the course of your cycle. This is an effective way to support any skincare changes that arise with the surge or downfall in hormones.

The average menstrual cycle is 28 days, and throughout this time your complexion will experience an array of conditions, from dry to oily to a radiant glow.

The art of syncing your skincare routine, to that of your menstrual cycle, means you are addressing each change and arming your skin with the products and nutrients it needs most to look and feel great.

Firstly, it’s important to understand the hormones at play. Estrogen is the dominant hormone of the first half of your cycle (keeping our skin plump, dewy and radiant), and progesterone is the dominant hormone of those last few weeks (hello, oily skin).

As your period nears, both estrogen and progesterone plummet leaving you with an overriding amount of testosterone (the acne culprit).

Days 1 to 7

From days 1 through to 7 you may notice your skin generally feels lacklustre or dull, and sensitivity might be heightened during this week too.

What you want to do here is focus on hydration, upping the ante on products that may include moisture rich ingredients like shea and cocoa butter, to improve your skin barrier. Our Coco Bliss Intensive Repair is a fabulous option, it’s also free of any retinol or glycolics that can cause irritation in this phase of your cycle.

Days 8 to 16

When your period is over and your body begins preparing for ovulation, generally days 8 through to 16, this is when your estrogen levels are revamped and you can anticipate a healthy glow. Newer, stronger skin cells start to form with this change, and so your focus should divert to exfoliation.

Not only does this assist skin cell turnover, but you’re also pre-empting that oily complexion to come. I see this is a great time to also load up on products that support collagen, like retinol.

If you’re more inclined to load up on natural ingredients, the Edible Beauty Beauty Reset Drops use a plant-based alternative to retinol (bakuchiol) which similarly smooths and firms the skin without the dryness and irritation often associated with traditional retinol use.

Days 17 to 24

Post-ovulation, oil production is at a high, so from days 17 through to 24 you want to work at soaking up that excess sebum and eliminating any pore-clogging bacteria. This window is a great time to start incorporating clay-based masks that will gently clarify your complexion for the final phase of your cycle.

Days 24 to 28

You’re about to cross the PMS finish line when days 25 through to 28 roll around. Your levels of estrogen and progesterone will begin to decline with inflammation and puffy skin, two key symptoms of this hormone change.

Bring out your serums that contain anti-inflammatory formulas (salicylic acid is your friend here), as they help penetrate pores and clear out the emerging blackheads and whiteheads. The No. 1 Belle Frais Cleansing Milk in our range contains salicylic acid for cleaner, clearer skin.

Consider this a very candid guide to navigating hormonal skin concerns month on month (isn’t it fun being a woman!). Find the products and practices that work for you, nourish your body, and gradually this routine will help you find your flow for a year-round glow.

About Anna Mitsios

Being diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at 18 marked a real turning point in Anna’s life. She began to search for natural solutions (nutrition and herbal remedies) to help manage the autoimmune condition. While working in corporate finance in Sydney and New York, Anna also took up studies in naturopathy; a step towards making her passion her career.

Working as a naturopath in a Sydney fertility clinic, Anna grew fed up with the lack of skincare that was safe and clean, especially for pregnant women. So, in 2014 she created a range of products – using Australian botanicals and luxury ingredients – that is so pure you could eat it.

After hours of research, cosmetic chemist meetings, more study, and formulating samples, Edible Beauty was born in Anna’s garage! From 2014 she was stocking the shelves at Sephora Pitt Street, when the store first opened, and within two months Edible Beauty was being sold internationally.

About Edible Beauty

Edible Beauty Australia is a holistic solution to skincare and wellness that addresses the need for an inside and outside approach. True beauty means more than simply looking good, it’s about caring for the health of your body, mind, and environment.

Love Beauty? Click here for our review of Rosie Huntington-Whiteley’s Rose Inc and here for Beauty Products to Make Your Skincare Regime More Luxurious.