Managing menopausal skin...
Updated: Nov 7, 2022
There are at least 34 different symptoms of the menopause affecting both physical and mental health. Least of all your skin, & it can feel very overwhelming.
The skin changes that occur during menopause and why…
The most potent of the 4 oestrogens declines during menopause dramatically accelerating skin ageing, & it’s responsible for keeping your skin...
Lubricated – stimulates sebaceous secretions
Hydrated – drives hyaluronic production & the structures around collagen
Turgid – ceramide production (that uphold barrier function)
Moisturised – maintains the lipid ‘mortar’ between the cell ‘bricks’
Rejuvenated – fibroblast activity to fuel cell function
Skin becomes thinner, lines & wrinkles develop as skin begins to sag – it’s more delicate & sensitive, and you may notice pigmentation marks developing. For some of us, it really is like going back to our teenage years with breakouts too.
As cell turnover slows down (the rate at which your skin renews itself), decreased lipid production means skin loses moisture trans-epidermally. Resulting in dryer, potentially itchy, flaky skin too - & not just on the face, the whole body can be affected.
Activity of sebaceous glands decreases, contributing to rougher texture & less defence from the elements.
Sweat gland function is diminished along with hormone fluctuations - commonly experienced as hot flushes. Not only can the skin feel very hot & perspire, but barrier deficiency & increased vascular activity can also trigger rosacea development. This affects women typically on the centre of the face and needs to be treated as extremely sensitive, not with acne style treatments. The two conditions are very different though progressed rosacea (papula-pustular) can look like acne breakouts.
These produce our pigment & decrease in density from 10 to 20% per decade in menopausal years. Along with producing uneven amounts of pigment - resulting in uneven skin tone or darker spots, you also get less natural protection from sun. Obviously, SPF & sun safety is vital.
Studies show that women’s skin loses about 30% of its collagen during the first five years of menopause. After that, the decline is more gradual. Women lose about 2% of their collagen ever year for the next 20 years. Remembering that as part of the natural ageing process we lose 1% of our collagen from age 30. For example, if we reach menopause at 50, we’ve already lost 20% collagen - by age 55 that’s 50% lost ! The structure of skin collapses and wrinkles start to appear.
Elastin fibres give skin it’s ability spring back. We get a decrease & fragment of elastin fibres resulting in sagging skin that doesn’t spring back when pulled.
Product picks to manage fluctuating skin & the top menopausal skin symptoms - the way we treat is dependent on how skin is behaving at a particular time.
Ensures the skin is thoroughly clean using our double cleansing technique & the inclusion of regular exfoliation to encourage cell renewal & healthy skin function.
Ensure you’re cleansing with a creamy, emollient like actively nourishing Intensive Moisture Cleanser, removing impurities whilst replenishing dry, depleted skin. Lipid-enriched, this also minimises damage of vital proteins & lipids that defend against dryness. Phytoactives from coconut oil & murumuru seed butter, help protect barrier lipids preserving the skin's natural resilience for a smoother feel after cleansing. Invigorating extracts of citrus, palmarosa & jasmine refresh tired skin. Rinses away easily, leaving skin cleaner, softer & more luminous.
Regular exfoliation is also important as your skin cell turnover dramatically slows, impacting skin texture & hydration levels. Rapid Reveal Peel is the strongest, clinically proven retail peel to visibly reduces fine lines - powerful results with no downtime. A unique complex of AHA’s, this lactic acid encourages new, firmer skin, removing dulling surface debris without causing dehydration. Pumpkin fruit enzyme & rice bran extract resurface to help even skin tone & accelerate cell turnover. Smoothing Australian caviar lime extract brightens for a more radiant complexion (can be used as a course over 8 weeks).
This stage layers hydration & actives to target skin concerns, & / or specific areas such as the eyes. We typically use serums or masques to customise your regime to suit your skin’s needs in the ‘right now’. Remembering that menopausal skin can fluctuate from one week to the next.
Hot flushes & sensitivity hero UltraCalming Mist soothes & hydrates to help calm redness & sensitivity. Use post-cleanse to lock in hydration & prime skin, quickly absorbs to support a functioning skin barrier, reducing future flare-ups. UltraCalming Complex contains oat & botanicals to help soothe & strengthen skin, whilst Aloe calms - supporting a natural moisture balance.
Skin ageing & collagen boosting Overnight Retinol Repair is concentrated & customisable, accelerates skin renewal reversing the appearance of skin ageing. Active 0.5% microencapsulated pure retinol & powerful peptides, along with antioxidant Vitamin C help reduce uneven skin tone & discoloration. Formulated with a bioenergised copper amino acid, works to visibly reduce wrinkles & improve skin firmness. Ceramides & active polysaccharides hydrate preventing water loss & soften fine lines.
Phyto Nature Firming Serum is a great retinol alternative as your skin may be too sensitive to tolerate Vitamin A. Dermalogica’s most advanced, dual-phase serum combines highly-active botanicals with biomimetic technology - reducing visible signs of skin ageing & literally reawaken the nature of younger looking skin, getting your skin behaving as it did when it was younger.
Breakout buster Retinol Clearing Oil powered by a lipid-based delivery system that actively nourishes with skin-mimicking phytoactive lipids from argan, rosehip seed & jojoba oils. Slow-release retinol works all night to help optimise skin recovery & reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, & hyperpigmentation. Salicylic Acid targets active breakouts to help clear skin.
Extreme dryness, rough texture is restored by Melting Moisture Masque transforming from balm to oil to help by skin’s natural heat. Penetrates skin’s surface layers to deeply nourish & rehydrate overnight. Microalgae’s hydrating properties soothe & protect skin against the drying effects of pollution. This vitamin rich, buttery formula, delivers intense lasting hydration. Linoleic acid nourishes while Vitamin E helps protect against damaging free radicals for healthier skin.
Multitasking for multiple symptoms & fluctuations, Smart Response Serum delivers what your skin needs when & where needed, for a personalised response every time. SmartResponse technology reacts to skin’s needs to hydrate, firm, brighten AND soothe. It recognises micro-changes in the skin, intelligently addressing skin concerns before they're visible to the naked eye and helping to prevent future damage.
Essential balance of moisturising & hydrating factors to protect along with an SPF for daytime.
Weightles wonder Calm Water Gel both moisturises & hydrates dry, sensitive skin. Refreshing gel formula transforms into a skinquenching fluid upon application, forming a barrier against environmental assault. Dual Hyaluronic Acid technology works in different skin surface layers to increase & lock in moisture.
Dynamic Skin Recovery SPF50 helps minimise the appearance of skin ageing with this medium-weight, emollient daily moisturiser & broad spectrum SPF50. Antioxidant White Tea, rich in polyphenols, a unique polypeptide help improve the appearance of photoaged skin.
Sound Sleep Cocoon is a revitalising treatment gel that transforms skin overnight by optimising night-time skin recovery. Encapsulated, motion-activated French lavender essential oil, along with calming sandalwood & patchouli, soothe the senses with aromatherapy to help promote deep, restful sleep for healthier-looking skin. Persian silk tree extract reduces signs of skin fatigue & restores vitality, & Wu-Zhu-Yu Extract provides visibly radiant skin by morning. Tamarind seed polysaccharide cushions skin, creating a nourishing cocoon of comfort for softer, more hydrated skin.
Dermalogica ProSkin services customise the treatment to what your skin needs on that day, with potential to create a personalised treatment plan with you to keep your skin looking amazing during this transitional phase.
Targeted programs use advanced professional grade formulas in the treatment room combined with technology to deliver active ingredients deep down in the skin, achieving more than what you would be able to at home...
We champion a 360 approach & encourage you to assess your stress levels & ways to manage them, exercise, diet & nutrition etc. massage, yoga – as well as skin treatments ! These links might also be helpful :)
The British Menopause Society
Davina McCall programme
App... 'balance – menopause support' by Dr Louise Newson and her website
Dr Louise Newson @menopause_doctor
Naomi Potter @drmenopausecare
Emma Bardwell The Menopause Nutritionist @emma.bardwell