You’re going through menopause
The major culprit in acne: hormones, which are all over the place now. “During menopause, estrogen and progesterone decrease, which increases inflammatory factors that cause breakouts,” says Marina Peredo, MD, an associate clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. What’s more, you might have recently gone on a new birth control pill (or patch or ring), something the North American Menopause Society supports women taking through menopause. (You can still get pregnant until you’ve gone 12 straight months without a period.) While for many women hormonal birth control clears up their skin, it’s not a slam dunk. “It can also cause acne,” she says. Because there are so many different options out there, if you’re experiencing acne flare-ups, go ahead and talk to your doctor about trying something new. These surprising acne home remedies can help clear up your skin.
Your new skincare regimen isn’t working … yet
You bought a bunch of new products expecting an immediate improvement, but your investment doesn’t look like it’s paying off. Here’s why: It’s completely normal to continue to break out as skin goes through an adjustment period. “When you start a new regimen, it can take one to three months to see results. Some people give up after one week, but that’s not enough time,” says Dr. Peredo. Also, consider that you may not be doing enough. While a topical regimen may clear up some acne, breakouts are a multifactorial beast. You have to think about getting stress levels under control and sleeping enough (both of which can drive up inflammation in your body, bringing on breakouts)—not just slathering on cream and hoping for the best. Here are doctors’ best tricks to get a better night’s sleep.