I love Chrissy Teigan – her honesty and wit make her like no other celebrity and it’s won her a legion of fans. Me being one of her biggest. But when she came out and spoke about her period skin a week or so ago, the world went nuts and I just did not get it. Why is this headline news? Us girls have been dealing with this for centuries, just because a celeb has talked about it doesn’t make warrant some kind of epiphany!
It’s not Chrissy’s fault, in fact, I applaud her for speaking about something so ordinary that resonates with us all. But it seems crazy that it’s not spoken about more often. We just…deal with it like total girl bosses, getting on with our day when really all we can think about is that nasty pimple tingling on our chin. Yep, always on the chin because in skin mapping, that is our hormone area. I’ve always been really lucky with my skin growing up, apart from having rosacea, pimples never really factored into my beauty dilemmas thankfully.
And yet, here I am, a few months from turning 30 and my chin is having…a moment. Just when we think we’re at the age where we have our shit together a little more, we’re thrust back into adolescence with a single spot. Or two. Or three. When that time of the month rolls around, I’ve always had the typical symptoms – bloating, mood swings to rival Jekyll and Hyde and a penchant for a Freddo bar (I don’t know why), yet spots were rare. So, when it started happening more often I had no idea what to do. As hormones become unbalanced your oil production goes into overdrive causing a breakout. I know right, just what we need.
After speaking to my naturopath, nutritionist and a lot of skincare research, I wanted to share a few bits of advice on tackling period skin.
UP YOUR OMEGAS
Fat may be seen as the enemy but when it comes to healthy fats, they’re your skins best friend. Upping your omega’s can be done through eating more salmon, avocado and nuts which are all complexion-loving goodies. I mean, if salmon every day is good enough for Victoria Beckham who suffered from acne, it’s good enough for us!
DRINK, DRINK, DRINK
I’ve been so guilty of not doing this enough lately and lots of water is definitely going to help keep your cells nice and hydrated. It’ll also help to flush toxins out of your system and keep period skin at bay.
DON’T TOUCH YOUR FACE
Have you ever tried to not touch your face for an entire day? It’s so hard! I’m constantly resting my chin in my hands or touching up my make-up and it needs to stop. As your period skin is more oily, you’re adding dirt and germs into the mix causing a lot of blocked pores.
LOOK AT YOUR SKINCARE
Ah yes, my first port of call when everything on my face goes a bit tits up. Although it’s important to love your skin from the inside, products for the outside can be a little more immediate. The three ingredient that kept popping up for period skin are salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, and tea tree oil which are gentle enough when your skin is sensitive yet potent enough to balance your oil levels.
Effaclar Micellar Water, £9 La Roche Posay
When everyone swore by Micellar Water a few years ago I really didn’t understand why but its been my skin saviour the last few weeks. As much as I love my normal Institut Esthederm make-up remover, I was worried that it was leaving a residue on my skin. But this has a high concentration of thermal spring water and is hypoallergenic making it super gentle on my skin while taking off every inch of make-up.
Cleansing Balm, £35 Darphin
I’m going to be honest. I was very kindly gifted this product and it sat in my cupboard for a couple of months. I love balm cleansers but when your face is determined to advertise to the world that you’re hormonal, greasy residue on my face is the last thing i want. So in there it stayed. But when I ran out of my normal cleanser, I gave this a go and couldn’t have been more wrong about it.
Firstly, you apply it to wet, not dry skin so you that water contact is there straight away. It turns into a milk and slides around the face like a normal cleanser. And washing it off made my skin squeak. Squeak! There was no grease or nasty film on my skin, it felt amazing. Converted.
SOS Pure Emergency Mask with Rebalancing Clay, £30 Clarins
There’s nothing more purifying than a face mask. A clay mask makes my skin feel fresh and squeaky clean instantly. This Clarins one helps absorb excess sebum to reduce shine without drying it out – it doesn’t have a fragrance and leaves my complexion clearer and less angry.
Skin Clear Treatment Gel, £5.99 Dr Organic
This is a complete godsend for period skin and has everything your stressed our skin will need. With good old fashioned tea tree (anyone else remember that as a teen?) it calms and soothes redness and irritation and dries quickly so you can apply your moisturiser afterwards. I use this every night and it makes blemishes half the size by morning.
Ferulic + Retinol Wrinkle Recovery Overnight Serum, £77 Dr Dennis Gross
When your period skin is producing more sebum, your face will generally feel more oily making it perfect conditions for spots galore. I try to stay away from my usual oils and night balms at this time and stick to a really hard-hitting serum. Retinol is perfect for this as it encourages a fast cell turnover making your skin more equipped at healing blemishes. If you aren’t sure about retinol, read THIS first.