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Post in Acne-Prone Skin

HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

I am 26 years old and for the past few months I have had a major issue with what I believe is hormonal ance. I say this because I only breakout on my chin/jaw/mouth area. I was on the same birth control for a long time and suddenly it got alot worse. Like huge irritated red pimple clusters. I decided to stop taking the birth control in hopes that would help. It somewhat helped but I still am breaking out. I cant even remember the last time my face was pimple free. I have tried the Murad regimen for 3 months twice a day and it didnt help. I have been trying a number of other things and its just not helping. I am frustrated and dont know what else to do. I cant leave the house without some form of makeup on but I feel like wearing alot of makeup isnt helping matters either. Does anyone have some advice for me or have a similar issue? Please help Smiley Sad

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

You should seek the advice of your doctor or a dermatologist to best determine what is going on, you could have a hormonal imbalance that needs to be corrected. Hope this helps!

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

Thank you. I am going to try that next since nothing external seems to be helping 

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

Do you consistently have pimples on your jaw/chin area or do they crop up at "that time of the month"?  If it's hormonal it would be related to your cycle and you would only typically see the cysts shortly before or during your period.


If you're seeing them all month long on your jawline/chin then it may be due to something as simple as resting your face in your hands or not wiping down your phone often enough.


If it's the first case definitely see your doctor or dermatologist.  There are so many different acne treatments out there you're bound to find something that will work for you.

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

That's not true, it could be (and most likely is) hormonal no matter what time of the month you break out. Your phone and hands arent causing it! I have the same issue and a dermatologist or a new contraceptive pill is your best bet. Products at Sephora I have liked are the Origins charcoal mask and the Peter Thomas Roth line (wouldn't bother with Murad). But the derm has a powerful arsenal, topical and oral. The (annoying) thing is you really have to stick with a treatment for a month or two to really give it a fair shot.

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

Thank you I will def try seeing the derm and possibly try a new contraceptive pill, one that is intended to help. I'm just sick of buying expensive things so try and fix it and nothing works. I have been trying different things and sticking with them for at least a month and nothing works. Its frustrating especially since I didnt even have acne as a teenager. Thanks for the advice! 

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

Ask a derm about the Obagi 3 Step System For Oily Skin. I've tried probably a dozen prescriptions over five years and that has been the best and the one I am sticking with. I also recommend getting a face brush to buff the skin. It stimulates and opens pores so the medicine can get in there better.

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

I have adult hormonal cystic nodular acne and I have had acne since I was a teenager (I am 33 now). In the past two years, my acne has gotten really out of control. It is on the jaw/chin area, sometimes the hollows of the cheeks, rarely on the forehead. It is very severe on PMS week. I cannot take the pill due to breast cancer in the family. I am half Korean half Irish and I have very oily skin-like, permashine...Now, if these traits sound similar, my method may help you. If you get desperate enough to try it, I am sure you will benefit. You will need to commit to doing this daily, no cutting corners and no folding and going back to harsh cleansers or products. Just give it a week Smiley Happy

1. Buy some good cotton pads, rose hips seed oil and some grape seed oil. Also, get a good benzoyl peroxide cream (such as ProActiv, PersaGel or La Roche-Posay Effaclear etc. 

2. If you wear foundation, use the grapeseed oil to soak a few cotton pads and thouroughly wipe off your makeup with them. It will feel weird and really greasy, but it is worth it. Do this until all your make up is off. It usually takes me about 4 pads (this is also due to mascara). Take a wash cloth and run hot water over it, wring it out and gently lay on your face. Let the warmth soak out and do this three times or so.

3. Take a gentle cleanser (like Philosophy Purity) and using just a bit, wash the excess grapeseed oil off of your face and gently wipe or blot with the washcloth. 

4. Apply the rosehips seed oil to the face and neck massaging in well. Follow with the benzoyl peroxide on the jaw/chin. When you wake up in the a.m. use the gentle cleanser and repeat step 4. 

Once a week, use a sulfur based mask ( I use the Proactiv one, but Peter Thomas Roth makes a good one too.) If you use retin-A apply this after your rosehips seed oil at night and skip the BP. 

Use a scrub, like maybe an apricot scrub once or twice a week. That's it. 

I have been scrubbing my face, using products galore for years. I was reading a blog about acne one day and came across this type of thing and thought, "I have nothing to lose." I am so glad I did because this is working for me. My skin had never, ever been this clear or supple. It actually looks healthy and is not overly oily or inflammed. 

Good luck,


Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

I second (third? fourth?) the posters who advised seeing a dermatologist. If you're having persistent issues, and/or seem to have tried everything to no avail, save yourself the time and money (and the irritation to your skin from trying new products) of trying to find a solution over the counter. A doctor will be able to assess what may be causing the issues and recommend a regimen for you. If it doesn't seem to work at first, don't lose heart; even prescription medications can sometimes take 6-8 weeks to see any change, so you have to be consistent (and really patient -- because it's frustrating when you just want to see results).


S/he may also prescribe antibiotics, which can be really helpful -- when I had awful breakouts on my chin/jaw (despite having used Retin-A for years), I was prescribed Clindamycin -- it's a very mild, gentle topical antibiotic (I used the lotion version), and that seemed to work wonders.

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

If your problems are indeed hormone related...they wont go away unitl you stop taking the BC pills and then it may take months for them to clear in reality no amount of product you use will take care of it...I had the same problem and now that I am older and have to take HRT...I am breaking out again....but it is not bad and only occasionally...this I can handle!

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

A couple of variables could be the solution, actually.  Your chin/jaw area is also where your cell phone rests/rubs, so make sure you're cleaning it regularly.  Are you resting your chin in your hands a lot or touching your face?  Are your breakouts happening at the same time of the month or part of your cycle?  (Ex: mid-cycle breakouts every month mid-cycle vs. mid-cycle, then during period, then other times and sporadic)  Are you using salicylic acid on your face every day?


FYI, breakouts on the chin OUTSIDE of the above variables could mean it IS hormonally related.  Some women actually have tesosterone and/or cortisol issues due to stress, medication, etc.  If that's the case, your GYN can test and help you with that.


You'll want to look up Renee Rouleau and visit her website.  Click on her "tips" page and sort under "acne". She is VERY knowledgable on what causes acne and how to prevent it.


I personally recommend staying with Murad no matter what.  That brand is completely right in line with the science of breakouts and not on the gimmicks that others promote to sell their watered-down lines.  Also, I would let your skin "air out" a day here or there with no makeup.  Sometimes, it fixes things by the end of the day.  Good luck!

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

Hi, this is an update. The oiling method is still working for me. I have found that I can't use liquid or cream powder, just mineral makeup. Most mineral make-up I have tried makes me 'itchy' except for a select few. The one that I use now is cover fx, though it is expensive and can be tricky to color match effectively. 

If I get a pimple, I use mario badescu pink stuff on it or if it is really big (like jaw or chin, which is very rare for me now) I use proactiv mask over night. Hope this helps anyone!


Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

I strongly agree with all the recommendations to see a dermatologist!!!  When I was about 23-24 years old, I was struck with such a terrible onset of cystic acne, like nothing I had ever experienced before.  Being a young (broke) professional, I figured I couldn't afford to go see a dermatologist and I spent months and months (maybe a year or more) using various OTC treatments in hopes that things would get better.  Well, they didn't. 


I finally got so desperate that I was willing to go to a dermatologist no matter how much it cost.  An oral antibiotic and prescription Retin-A cream worked wonders.  Over time, my skin cleared and I have no issues with cystic acne today.  (I'm 31 now.)  What I do have, however, are pitted acne scars, which could have been avoided (or at least minimized) if I had gone straight to a dermatologist in the very beginning!  I probably would have saved money too, since I bought just about every OTC treatment, cleanser, mask, etc. I could find. 


At any rate, don't hesitate -- get professional help before you end up with permanent scars like me!

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

All of a sudden in my mid-twenties I started getting bad acne but only on my neck/upper chest. Nothing I tried worked and most things made it worse. I think I went through every acne product Sephora carries. Finally when I was getting a facial one day my aesthetician recommended Obagi clenziderm lotion. It was a little expensive at the spa ($75) but I had already spent hundreds of dollars on other products that literally just sit in my vanity drawer so I gave it a go. I use a very small amount on my face and chest every once and a while and I have been breakout free since I started using it. You can find it on amazon for $40-60. It has changed my life.

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

If you are sure your break outs are hormonal you might want to look into a hormone balancing tea or tincture. I use Vitex (Chaste Tree Berry) Tincture and it has helped so much with regulating my hormones which went haywire when I tried to take birth control. Vitex actually helps your body make a healthy amount of hormones, if your making too much it helps it stop and if you make to little it encourages your body to produce more. I highly recommend looking into it. Natural remedies are so helpful and not burdened with the side effects that we are used to prescription drugs carrying.

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

I've been going through the same thing, and honestly, I started taking a medication with an off-label use for acne- spironolactone. I think its helping so far, and I've been using it for just under 2 months. If its hormonal, going to a derm may be your best option.


Topically, I really love the Nude Purify cleansing wash because its super gentle but cleanses and balances the skin well. The Fresh Umbrian Clay line is targeted for cystic acne, and I really like it. Anything from Dr. Dennis Gross is great, and the Peter Thomas Roth sulphur cooling mask has been a god-send for clearing up individual spots.


I've also found that being gentle with my skin and keeping my routine fairly simple- not overdoing it on the acne products and staying away from those scary acne kits- has helped with inflammation and making sure it doesn't get irritated. 

Re: HELP! Adult Hormonal Acne

I am 30 years old and around age 25 had started to develop horrible cystic acne! This was around the time I stopped using BCPs.  When I was a teenager I had the occasional zit, but NOTHING LIKE THIS. I had tried EVERY OTC product out there and had finally gone to a dermatologist a few years ago after nothing working and they had me do this routhine: wash in the morning with panoxyl face wash (otc) & use clindamycin lotion (RX) in the morning and then at night wash with Cereve face wash & use the cerevu lotion (otc) and a RX tretinoin cream. This worked pretty well for a while.. Then my insurance changed and would not cover my prescription face creams any longer... My face got really bad again, fast.  Then I found the Clinique Acne Solutions set/kit.  There's a foam cleanser, toner, and a lotion. OMGOSH what a HUGE difference this has made. I will honestly say my skin has NEVER looked this great, including when I was on the prescription products...  Maybe it's just me, but I will never go without these Clinique products! You may spend a little initially but the full size bottles last a while- plus for me it was cheaper to buy all 3 of these products than my prescription stuff that my insurance didn't cover any longer.  The Clinique products have cleared my acne and greatly improved my entire skin texture on my face. My pores are smaller and my skin just looks so great. I cannot say enough good about the Clinque Acne Solutions line.   So, that's my advice!!!  Smiley Happy  Good luck!

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