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Areas affected by hormonal acne

Female Hormonal Acne

Women with hormonal acne have deeper-seated cysts in the jawline and chin areas. Occasionally, the cheeks and even the neck may be involved. Rarely, even the upper lip’s skin can be affected. Classically, these cysts appear or worsen around or just before the menstrual period. Women with hormonal acne sometimes have co-existing non-hormonal acne, which can be mild, moderate, or severe. However, in many cases, the patient never had significant non-hormonal acne as a teenager. There may be pink or red marks present called post-inflammatory erythema after pimples have resolved. As some of the inflammatory pimples heal, there can be scars.

Main Treatments

Use adapalene gel or other retinoid at night on the entire face
Use benzoyl peroxide leave-on gel in the morning on the entire face
Use anti-acne cleansers when washing the face
If very oily, use anti-acne toner
Take oral zinc supplements for 2-3 months
Take fish oil supplements on an ongoing basis
Consider seeing a dermatologist for spironolactone

Skin Care

Add ons

For new zits, use pimple spot treatment
For flat red or pink blemishes, use a blemish spot treatment
For any raised scars, use scar spot treatment
If you use hormonal contraception, make sure it’s acne-friendly birth control
If you are pregnant or attempting conception, your treatment options are more limited. Visit our page on acne during pregnancy
Breastfeeding patients may safely use all the treatments recommended on this page except spironolactone.