Helpful Tips to Treat Hormonal Acne Post-Pill

After having been on birth control for nearly 12 years, I finally decided to get off of it-it’s been 3 months. One day soon I’ll dive deep into how the journey has been, but just in the last month I’ve been experiencing an uptick in hormonal acne. I shared this on Instagram for any and all recommendations and received an abundance of amazing responses. Below, I put together a list of dietary and herbal remedies, prescriptions and over-the-counter medications, plus some skincare suggestions to help combat hormonal acne post-pill. I know this can be a stressful and emotional struggle, so I hope this is helpful if you have been looking for resources. Before you read on, I want to highlight that the most reoccurring tip was to give yourself grace and time for your hormones to re-balance. If you’d like to learn more about your natural cycle, the book In the Flo has been highly recommended! As always, be sure to talk to your healthcare provider to find what is best suited for you. 

A huge thank you to all those who wrote in and shared their experiences! 

HOLISTIC APPROACHES
  • Colostrum
  • Zinc – take on a full stomach to avoid serious nausea
  • Spearmint tea
  • Going gluten/sugar/dairy free
  • Ginger
  • Fresh squeezed lemon juice, ginger, turmeric, and black pepper tonic on an empty stomach every morning
  • Limit dairy consumption – especially the days before your period
  • Ice rolling and not drinking coffee on an empty stomach to lower cortisol  
  • Beef liver capsules, magnesium, and NORA tea – plus eating every three hours – a carb + protein
  • Beef tallow 
  • Pink clay with Kaolin or Eucalyptus 
  • Supplement with Zinc and Magnesium
  • Stress management – the supplement Serenol by Bonafide
  • Paying close attention to your glucose spikes – check @glucosegoddess
  • Raw carrot salads – Shred carrots, add apple cider vinegar+ coconut oil, season with salt and pepper
  • Wash your face with cool green tea try a matcha powder+honey+ lemon face mask
  • DIM supplements from SM nutrition
  • Orange/turmeric/ginger shots and raw garlic to reduce inflammation
  • Vitex – a natural supplement that helps with hormonal acne, great to take after getting off hormonal birth control
  • Rooibos Tea
  • Raspberry Leaf Tea
  • Focus on gut health – incorporate pre & probiotics, kimchi, kombucha, yogurt, kefir, etc.
  • Berberine – a natural antibacterial supplement
  • Warm compresses, ice, lots of water and probiotics 
  • Red light therapy mask
  • Ice as soon as you feel the blemish, then use whatever spot treatment of choice. Also try Ice + salicylic acid
  • Witch hazel, an anti-inflammatory
  • Natural cycles (natural birth control) and the Oura Ring
Skincare Products + Brands
  • Caudalie’s Vinopure Serum  
  • Paulas Choice: Clear Extra Strength Daily Skin Treatment
  • Cosrx pimple patches
  • Mighty Patch pimple patches 
  • Pimple patches with micro darts in them: Mighty Patch, Rael and Peach Slices all carry these!   
  • Minimal and clean skincare – just using cleanser and moisturizer and SPF until skin balances 
  • The Ordinary: Mandelic Acid 10% + Hyloronic Acid + Adelaide Acid + Glycolic Acid Toner were all suggested!
  • Salicylic Acid wash in AM and/or Tretinoin (or over the counter Differin) at night/every other night 
  • Face Reality Skincare – Sulfur Spot Treatment 
  • Beef Tallow – sold online and at most health food stores 
  • Pink Clay Mask with Kaolin or Eucalyptus 
  • Skin Smart Hypochlorious Acid Spray
  • Panoxyl products 
  • Retinols
  • Differin Gel 
  • Switch to a foaming wash pre and during cycle and a hydrating face wash post-cycle 
  • Open up a capsule of gel Melatonin (10 mg) and apply topically at night – this acts as an androgen blocker 
  • Getting monthly facials with an esthetician
  • Eminence Organic Skincare products 
  • Dr Zenovia Skincare products
  • La Roche Posay Acne Range products  
  • Nichola at Pacific Touch Facials in NYC
  • Environ Sebum Control
  • Origins Super Spot Remover 
  • Witch Hazel – acts as an anti-inflammatory 
  • Barefaced Skincare products 
  • Cerave Acne Cleanser with Benzoyl Peroxide
Prescriptions + Medication
*consult doctor before*
  • Tretinoin
  • Clearstem – See @emilymorrows account for tips  
  • Spironolactone
  • Acne Specialists of Nashville/Oakland – online consult + they ship products to you @nashvilleacne
  • ILK injections for painful acne
  • Winlevi Cream is the topical version of Spironolactone, used in derm for hormonal acne in adults – consult your dermatologist! 
  • Aczone
  • Aviclear
  • Apostrophe – website that you can match with the best dermatologist & they ship products to you based on your consult
  • Clindamycin Gel  
  • Ovira, Clear Skin pill that includes Zinc
hormonal apps
Testimonials
  • “Mine went away after the first month or two after getting off the pill!”
  • “I just got off last month and it’s been crazy how much I feel more in my body now! I use natural cycles and the Oura ring it’s a game changer and I don’t think I’ll ever be going back on Hormonal birth control” 
  • “After years of being on BC when I went off, my acne went crazy for a year & a half! Unfortunately I never found a cure, just had to let my hormones get balanced again. Lots of articles recommended spearmint tea everyday though ❤️ 
  • “I’m currently struggling with this too. I know gut health is super important and can affect your acne but drinking spearmint tea has helped. Right now I’m focused on a healthy gut + spearmint tea.” 
  • “Low carbish, low sugar diet. I would have everything in moderation with carbs but honestly i feel my best and my skin cleared when i focused on lowering carbs and sugar” 
  • “It just takes time! I never really dealt with acne but once I went off hormonal BC I had it for like 6 months because my hormones were trying regulate. I did find that doing seed cycling and taking an adrenal supplement helped a little” 
  • When I got off the pill definitely had an uptick in hormonal/chin acne around the 6 month mark but subsided by the first year off it. Not noticeable instantly
  • In the same boat as you- had hormonal acne, was put on birth control and I’ve been off BC for years. Truly going gluten/sugar/dairy free makes the biggest difference in my skin. Also using tretinoin and using primally pure skincare has helped tremendously!! 🙂
  • Minimal skincare! I too came off the pill recently and the only thing that helps me is using very minimal product!!
  • Following your journey✨ I’m 27 and getting IUD removed next year but I’m nervous about that change! Avoiding dairy during PMS and ginger shots helped me when I was birth control free a few years ago for clear skin
  • “I had it reallyyyyy bad on my chin and jawline after being on BC for 15 years…it took several months to show up and then it lasted for like 4-6 months. To avoid this, I’d recommend taking spironolactone, a blue or fucshia LED mask, and cleansing twice a day, no skipping. I also started tretinoin with niacinamide and that has been super helpful too! One last thing — Renee Rouleau has products that specifically target hormonal acne, which I used during that time and it really helped. Yours looks minor compared to mine though so hope it stays that way ☺️🤎 

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