The skin is the largest organ in the human body (or second largest, but we digress). Many people tend to think of their skin as a purely superficial body part that does nothing but affect our physical appearance and soak up the sun. As medical professionals understand, the skin is actually one of the most integrated and involved bodily systems we have. Our skin is involved directly in our nervous systems, circulatory systems, endocrine systems, and more. Because of its diverse uses and interactions, the skin is prone to a number of different conditions and deficiencies. One such common skin condition is estrogen deficiency.
Today, we will discuss how to treat estrogen-deficient skin from a cosmetic perspective by examining the link between menopause and estrogen deficiency, explaining how estrogen deficiency impacts the skin, and by discussing some potential treatments to bring skin back to its youthful, healthy self!
Menopause, Estrogen Deficiency, and Skin Health
When many of us think of menopause, our minds go straight to hot flashes and night sweats. Fewer individuals realize that one of the main symptoms of menopause involves dry skin and other skin changes. The reason? The hormonal changes women experience during menopause including a reduction of estrogen levels are tied directly to skin health. Estrogen is responsible (amongst many other things) for stimulating the natural production of collagen. Most of the collagen in our bodies is found in the skin, and helps to keep our skin youthful and healthy.
It should therefore come as no surprise that this deficiency in estrogen often causes skin changes for women during and after menopause. A large percentage of women experiencing estrogen deficiencies related to menopause simply assume it is part of the natural aging process. While this is true to a point, it is possible to improve estrogen levels and improve the visible appearance and the underlying health of the skin as well!
How Does Estrogen-Deficient Skin Behave?
As we explained above, a key component of estrogen and skin health comes down to collagen production. Estrogen-deficient skin is also collagen deficient skin, which means that the skin might not be as tight, supple, or strong. Yet this is only one way in which estrogen impacts skin health.
Sebum gets a bad rap for being a trigger for acne and other skin conditions, but it is absolutely essential for keeping skin hydrated and healthy.
Due to collagen and sebum production being impacted by estrogen levels, the primary symptoms of estrogen-deficient skin include:
- Dry skin
- Itchy skin
- A feeling of “thin” skin
- More visible wrinkles and fine lines
Modern Treatments for Estrogen Deficiency in Skin
Traditional Estrogen Boosting Treatments
Hormone therapy to boost estrogen levels “comes in pill, skin patch, gel, cream or spray form — remains the most effective treatment for the relief of troublesome menopausal hot flashes and night sweats.” As a result, these therapies also go a long way to improving the feel, appearance, and overall health of skin for individuals with estrogen deficiencies.
Collagen Boosting Treatments
For those interested in attacking the problem of low collagen levels, there are a number of minimally invasive options including radiofrequency treatments, microdermabrasion, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) treatments, laser resurfacing treatments, and much more! It is important to understand that while these treatments may be effective, they will not treat the root cause of estrogen deficiency. It is up to the patient and the practitioner to determine whether the skin should be treated as a surface level problem or as an overall hormonal imbalance.
Holistic Skin and Estrogen Treatments
Another great option which can be performed in conjunction with or in lieu of the options listed above is to take a holistic approach to estrogen deficiency. Because these options are great for overall health and carry no side effects, there is no harm in giving this a try under the care of a physician. Options for holistic skin boosts due to estrogen deficiencies include:
- A diet full of omega-3’s: essential fatty acids like omega-3’s found in nuts and fatty fish are a great way to keep skin hydrated and healthy.
- Use appropriate sun protection: as with anybody, sun damage can exacerbate skin aging and skin dryness. This is particularly true for men and women with low estrogen levels in the skin.
- Use gentle skin care: limiting hot showers, using gentle skin care products, and daily moisturization are all great choices!
Join us at SCALE 2020 for the Latest in Cosmetic Dermatology
This July 22-25th, join us at the world famous Music City Convention Center in downtown Nashville for SCALE 2020! The annual Symposium for Cosmetic Advances & Laser Education is bigger and better than ever. We are proud to present a wide range of exhibitors and sponsors who will be discussing topics ranging from robotic dermatological surgeries to acne to non-invasive cosmetic procedures.
Register now to reserve your spot to the premier multidisciplinary meeting for aesthetic medicine, surgery and dermatology in the United States.
2020 Exhibitors & Sponsors
Elite sponsors: Allergan & Galderma
Platinum sponsors: Body by BTL, Crown Aesthetics, Cynosure, Merz Aesthetics, Ortho Dermatologics, Solta Medical
Gold sponsors: AbbVie, Crystal Clear, DefenAge, Evolus, SkinCeuticals, Sun Pharma