For most of us getting your period means you also have to deal with PMS, cramps and a shocking headache. It seems completely unfair that this is also the time we have to deal with those “time of month” acne breakouts.

I’m here to tell you that there is a way to prevent these monthly breakouts from occurring.

There is a natural way to banish these breakouts for good.

What causes hormonal breakouts?

Hormonal or menstrual breakouts occur during your monthly cycle or during pregnancy. This is due to the hormonal changes experienced in the body during menstruation.

It can be visible as early as 7 days before you are due to menstruate but can also clear up as soon as menstruation.

The common causes of hormonal acne:

  • Fluctuations in hormones
  • Poor skincare routine leading up to and during menstruation
  • Poor diet leading up to and during menstruation (drop the junk food!)

As we approach menstruation, our hormone levels begin to shift from female hormones (estrogen and progesterone) to male hormones (testosterone).

An increase in testosterone can result in our skin being more prone to acne, particularly those painful cyst like nodules.

The shift in hormones can lead to sebaceous glands increasing in activity.

This then increases the chances of acne lesions, oily skin and oily scalp. This is also the perfect time for inflammation and breakouts to occur.

The week before your period is the week where you are most prone to excess oil production.

Your skin will look more shiny and you will be more prone to breakouts including cystic acne – those deep painful cysts usually on the chin or jaw line.

Follow these four skincare tips to help reduce hormonal acne:

1)  Cut the dairy

Modify your diet by reducing or removing dairy from your diet. Dairy contains cow hormones that can increase activity in your oil glands.

Opt for an organic rice or oat milk instead. Consult your doctor before removing dairy from your diet if you are pregnant.

2)  No sugar

This is the time where we feel like devouring a whole block of chocolate in one sitting, but I can tell you that this is the worst thing for hormonal acne.

In order to prevent hormonal acne, it’s really important to keep your blood sugar stable and reduce the inflammation.

3)  Include protein in every meal

Be sure to include a protein source in every meal (doesn’t necessarily have to be meat) whether that is egg, protein powder, chicken or lean turkey.

4)  Exfoliate your skin 2-3 times per week

It’s hard to find the motivation to upkeep your skincare routing when you are feeling fatigued and crampy, but exfoliation is key in preventing hormonal breakouts.

Be sure to exfoliate 2-3 times per week to reduce bacteria, remove dead skin and increase circulation.

Would love to hear if you have any great ways to help control hormonal acne, please share your ideas and thoughts in the comments below.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com
  • I’ve recently read of a girl using Listerine on her acne. She saw an improvement in 2 weeks. I’ve suffered cystic acne for over 30 years and had to resort to Roaccutane twice. It is such a horrible affliction to have, especially as an adult when you should have grown out of it. And people assume you’re dirty and have a crap diet, and it’s not the case at all


  • Dropping the junk food is definitely a timely tip for me :P


  • Love these ideas now to remember them when I need it most


  • for easy steps to remember but i still wont be cutting out dairy i love cows milk to much

    • You could try reduced fat milk, not necessarily skim. I swapped to a well known Devondale UHT Semi-Skim Milk which has very little difference in taste of refrigerated milk. Some of the cheaper ones are very watery and also keep for less days after opened and kept in the fridge. One particular brand (not a supermarket name one) the full cream one tastes watery.




  • Ok. I gave up the dairy after I read this but my breakouts actually got worse. I swappes to having soy milk in my porridge and latte’s, could this be causing it?


  • I’ve always found drinking lots of water as well. Not only keeps your body cleansed but also your skin. Not having water running on your face while in the shower. Use a face washer or just your hands.


  • I could probably do with a bit more protein in my diet as well as exfoliate my skin a little more often.


  • Thanks for sharing this article with good tips; I swear by exfoliating and drinking loads of water and avoiding sugar and caffeine, which is a struggle as chocolate is so good!


  • I have always suffered with bad skin and before and during my period is always the worst. Thanks for the helpful tips


  • I don’t have any different tips for hormone acne you were spot on


  • Good little piece, with valuable information. The ‘avoid’ things are always so much harder at that time of month but speaking from personal experience doing so makes a big difference, not only in skin appearance but my overall feelings of wellness.


  • Thanks. I didn’t know about the dairy. I think I might give it a go. I am really over getting pimples. I went through 6 months on roaccutane to get rid of it, but they seem to be creeping back (not as bad as it was though thank goodness).


  • Love points two and four thank youn


  • Thanks for sharing this informative and interesting article with good tips; in particular no dairy. Hard to say no to the sugar; in particular chocolate!


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