Bodily functions are regulated through hormones. Hormones help cells communicate with one another and regulate such things as temperature, blood pressure, growth, cell repair, metabolism, fertility and reproduction. Though perhaps produced in varying degrees, both men and women are affected. Three key hormones affect skin: Estrogens, testosterone and thyroid.
When estrogen is out of balance, skin may thin, become dry or become more sensitive. Acne may surface. Hair may grow in places it did not grow before or fall out. When testosterone is out of balance, hair growth is affected and/or lost. Skin becomes coarser and oil production changes. Thyroid hormones also affect skin when out of balance. Too many thyroid hormones will increase pore size and increase sweat production. Too little and skin becomes dry, rough and thick.
Conditions such as pregnancy and young adulthood change hormone production. With pregnancy, hyperpigmentation often occurs because too much melanin is produced. This is called melasma or pregnancy mask. In young adulthood, androgen hormones stimulate oil glands. Over stimulation in the oil glands encourages acne.
Skin treatments for hormonal changes include assertive ingredients that make the skin more sun sensitive because they put the skin in a fragile state. Anti-aging products will include peptides, alpha-hydroxy acids, and antioxidants. Acne skin-care products include modified Vitamin A, salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxides. Lasers and peels, effective for melasma, should be performed by highly trained technicians after delivery.
Hormone flux is more common now because people are living longer and entering puberty sooner. Surgeries, such as hysterectomies, are performed that change hormone production with the removal of ovaries. Medications often imbalance aspects of the body while balancing the illness. For significant concerns, the consumer should consider a proper evaluation by a dermatologist or highly trained esthetician. Proper home care will include cleansing, exfoliation and hydration. Proper acne care will include antibacterial, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory ingredients.