contraceptive pill

posted 20.02.2022

Is Your Contraception Causing Acne?

Acne does not just happen to teenagers; women can suffer from acne all the way up to and during menopause. At Body Lipo Lincoln, we believe that beautiful, clear and stress-free skin shouldn’t be something you just dream about. We want to make it happen, and as part of our in-depth consultation process, we will discuss all aspects of your health. 

If you want to know if your contraception may be causing acne or making it worse, you don’t need to wait to come to see us. This post covers all of the most common questions we get asked about acne and the contraceptive pill — and other forms of hormonal contraception.

Hormonal  Acne

Hormonal acne is acne that affects women and men. Men tend to be impacted if they are receiving testosterone therapy or use steroids. Women tend to be more severely affected by natural hormonal fluctuations, resulting from menstruation, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), pregnancy and menopause. These changes can cause excess sebum, which clogs pores and traps dead skin cells, increasing bacterial growth and leading to acne. Hormonal acne is common for women aged 20 to 49 and tends to cause blackheads, whiteheads and subdermal cysts that form sore, tender, red lumps under the skin.   

Contraception and Acne

Research has shown that increased hormonal therapy for acne can be effective, and the combined pill may be prescribed to help reduce acne. Below are hormonal contraceptives that have been associated with acne, which can appear in various areas of your body, including your face, neck, chest, shoulders and back. 

Progesterone Only Pill

The progesterone-only pill (POP) is often referred to as the mini-pill, brands include Cerazette®, Aizea®, Cerelle®, and Feanolla®. The mini-pill does not contain oestrogen and may be recommended to women concerned about weight gain. The mini-pill is also considered a safer option than the combined pill for women at risk of blood clots, who smoke or have a history of migraines and/or high blood pressure. Unfortunately, the mini-pill is associated with acne, and if you are suitable for the combined pill, you may want to consider swapping if acne is becoming a real issue. 

Contraceptive Injection, Hormonal Intrauterine Device (IUDs) and Hormonal Implants

All forms of contraceptive injections, hormonal IUDs and hormonal implants have been linked to acne. Various types include:

  • Depo-Provera injection is the most common brand name for the contraceptive injection, often referred to as the Depo injection, or Depo shot. 
  • Mirena coil is the most used hormonal IUD. Although other brands all work the same way, some last longer than others. 
  • Nexplanon implant is the most common brand of subdermal hormonal implant and consists of one flexible rod placed under the skin in the inner arm.

If you are acne-prone, it’s best to avoid the above contraceptives. If you can’t take another form of contraception, don’t despair; we have various treatments that have been proven to be effective at reducing and preventing the recurrence of acne. 

Ways to Prevent Acne 

There are various ways to help prevent acne that might also help reduce acne already present. 

Staying Hydrated

When you are dehydrated, this may increase oil production. Although drinking water is probably what comes to mind when you think about staying hydrated, herbal tea offers an alternative. Herbal tea can be hot or made and put in the fridge for a refreshing cold drink. With so many flavours, herbal tea is a great option if you’re not keen on water.

Avoid Touching Your Face

Our hands are covered with bacteria, and washing hands will not remove all bacteria which will transfer whenever you touch your face. This bacteria can contribute to acne and impurities that you can’t see and to clogged pores, all of which can cause acne and breakouts. 

Washing Skin

Avoid scrubbing skin, which can cause irritation and increase oil production. Also, do not use flannels or face cloths as it is difficult to judge how much you are rubbing the skin. Additionally, unless you use a fresh one every day, flannels and face cloths are a breeding ground for bacteria. Use fingers to apply face wash and apply in small circular motions. Rinse off with warm, not hot, water and gently pat your face dry with a clean towel. Wash your hair regularly and try to avoid letting your hair fall across your face.

Skincare and Facials

The ingredients in the skincare and makeup products you use can impact oil production and increase acne. Using the correct products can also reduce acne and help prevent future breakouts. With so many different ingredients, it can feel impossible to know what skincare products and facials are best when you have acne-prone skin. This is where our skin club membership can save you money and make your life easier. 

We know that various factors can cause acne, and there is no one-size-fits-all solution. We will always put results over profit and never perform a treatment or recommend a product if we don’t believe you will have a high likelihood of positive results. 

Click HERE for more information about our advanced, clinically-proven facials, available at Body Lipo Lincoln.

Take your first step…