Hormonal acne at any age is distressing and scarring; damaging both the skin and self-image. Hormonal acne treatments recommended by allopathic doctors often includes prescription antibiotics and vitamin A derivatives (Accutane) with potential side effects. The most effective natural treatments for acne focus on both internal causes and external damage.
A well-rounded holistic approach to supporting balanced hormone levels, beneficial bacteria and phase-two liver detoxification can provide lasting relief from acne while benefiting every aspect of health. When you look inside for the root causes of the manifestations of acne, life-long improved skin health is the reward.
Causes of Hormonal Acne
Hormonal acne has three distinct causes: chronic bacterial infections in the lymph system, compromised phase-two liver detoxification, and excessive male hormones called androgens. All three will increase oil production and clog hair follicles resulting in acne. Poor diet and hygiene will exacerbate acne. In order to be successful, natural treatments for acne should address all of these causes.
Detoxification and Hormonal Acne
First the phase-two liver detoxification pathways should be supported. Women with a congested liver create an enzyme that converts hormone precursors to male hormones. By supporting phase-two detoxification, many women will stop the cycle of androgen dominance. Liver detoxing herbs, minerals and B-vitamins up-regulate phase-one liver detoxification and can potentially increase acne and hormonal imbalances. The best-tolerated phase-two liver supporting supplements include:
- Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM)
- N-Acetyl L-Cysteine
The MTHFR gene mutation can contribute to reduced liver function and hormonal acne. There are several ways you can test for this gene mutation and Isthmus Wellness can help you determine which supplements best support overall health if you have any of the MTHFR gene mutations.
Infrared Sauna and Hormonal Acne
Infrared saunas are seven times more effective than traditional saunas for supporting phase-two liver detoxification while producing significantly less perspiration. Infrared heat generates sweat with a toxin ratio of nearly 20% compared to 3% from traditional saunas. Regular infrared sauna use provides a deep, productive sweat where toxins reside, at the cellular level. A study published in The Journal of Cosmetic and Laser Therapy showed significant improvements in overall skin tone, including softness, smoothness, elasticity, clarity and firmness as well as a reduction in wrinkles and crow’s feet after just 12 weeks of Sunlighten’s near-infrared sauna technology.
Herbs and Probiotics for Hormonal Acne
If male hormones continue to dominate after 30 days of phase-two liver support, hormone balancing herbs such as licorice and maca root, tribulus, vitex and white peony can encourage the proper hormone production. These herbs are usually taken at a higher dosage for two to three months and then reduced to a few times a week long-term.
Chronic, low-grade bacterial infections can be effectively addressed using soil-based probiotics (SBO). SBOs replace the naturally occurring beneficial organisms in the intestines that are now depleted due to current farming practices. These probiotics are significantly stronger than dairy cultured probiotics and avoid potential dairy allergens.
 B.A. Russell, N. Kellett & L.R. Reilly. Study to Determine the Efficacy of Combination LED Light Therapy (633nm and 830 nm) in Facial Skin Rejuvenation. Journal of Cosmetic and Laser Therapy, 2005; 7: pp 196-200.