Hormonal acne is caused by an imbalance and fluctuation in hormones, hence the name!

However, pinpointing whether someone’s acne is being caused by hormones (“hormonal acne”) can be frustrating because we can’t visually see the hormone imbalance. We need bloodwork drawn and a dermatologist’s help to determine if hormones are the root of our acne problem.

• Your age: We expect teenagers to have acne. After all, their hormones are raging and they are going through major bodily changes. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always stop there. Once you reach your 20’s and 30’s, acne can strike again, especially in women. If you are past your teen years and are still experiencing acne or maybe you had baby soft skin during your teens and you are just now breaking out, these are good signs its hormonal acne.
• It’s cyclical: If you are breaking out around the same time every month and you are a female, then more than likely its hormonal acne. Hormonal fluctuations caused by menstruation and even menopause can create an excess of oil produced causing more breakouts.
• Acne type: There are different types of acne. Most often, acne consists of blackheads, whiteheads and clogged pores that become infected (papules and pustules). On the other hand, hormonal acne can result in nodules and cysts. Nodules hurt. They are large, hard and go deeper into your skin. Cysts are also deep but can have pus and are softer. If you are experiencing large, hard bumps you are unable to “pop” (please stop trying, you don’t want to scar), these are related to hormones.

Acne location: The location of your acne can be telling. Hormonal acne is usually found around the jawline and cheeks. The excess hormones in your body are making your oil production increase as well and many oil glands are around the chin/jawline.

So how do you treat hormonal acne? Honestly, you are going to find many at-home remedies out there in your online searches, but the absolute best thing you can do for hormonal acne is scheduling an appointment with your dermatologist. Hormonal acne is harder to treat and oftentimes requires not only prescription creams but possibly even an oral medication to help balance out those hormones.

If you try an abundance of treatments and never give anything time to work, you won’t see results and it’s only going to lead to more stress and in turn, yes, more acne. So talk to your dermatologist and let them help you write your acne success story.