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9 Ways Estrogen Affects Your Skin

Estrogen begins to decline as early as our late 30s. This can cause many symptoms and affect your skin. Learn all the ways it impacts your skin.
Apr 16, 2024 | Joy McCarthy

Have you noticed your skin is changing in your late 30's, 40s and 50s? You're not alone. Or perhaps you notice your skin changes throughout the month if you're menstruating?

As we age, estrogen (and other hormones) slowly begin to decline, which have a direct effect on your skin.

I have experienced this first hand, being in my mid-late 40s I've had to make some key changes to my routine to help my skin better adapt, which I'm going to share in a future post. Don't worry, we've got this!

Despite there being clear documented evidence that estrogen affects skin health, there is still so much researchers don't yet know. Unfortunately studies on women and female health issues are seriously lagging behind men. However, we do know 9 ways estrogen impacts skin health:

1. Hydration: Estrogen helps maintain skin hydration by increasing the production of hyaluronic acid, which is crucial for retaining moisture in the skin. This leads to a plump appearance and supple feeling on the skin as well as being essential for a healthy skin barrier function.


2. Oil Production: Estrogen regulates sebum production in the skin which keeps our skin nice and juicy. Proper sebum production is essential for maintaining skin barrier function and preventing dryness or on the flipside, excess oiliness.

3. Strength & Elasticity: Estrogen is a key part of the extracellular matrix of the skin which is an important component of the strength and elasticity of the skin. As estrogen declines, so too does the quality of the skin.

4. Collagen Production: Estrogen stimulates the production of collagen, a protein that provides structural support to the skin. Collagen helps maintain skin elasticity and firmness, reducing the appearance of wrinkles and sagging.

5. Skin Thickness: Estrogen contributes to the thickness of the skin by promoting the proliferation of keratinocytes, the predominant cell type in the epidermis. Thicker skin is more resilient and less prone to damage. If you're still menstruating, you may notice your skin is thinner at the start of your period when estrogen and progesterone are their lowest.

6. Wound Healing: Estrogen accelerates the wound healing process by promoting the migration and proliferation of skin cells, as well as enhancing the formation of new blood vessels. As you age, you may notice if you have a cut or abrasion it takes longer to heal.

7. Melanin Production: Estrogen influences melanin production, the pigment responsible for skin coloration. Changes in estrogen levels can affect melanin synthesis, potentially leading to alterations in skin tone or pigmentation. This can be seen as darkened freckles or sun spots or uneven skin tone.

8. Antioxidant Protection: Estrogen exhibits antioxidant properties, helping to neutralize free radicals that can damage skin cells and accelerate aging processes.

9. Anti-Inflammatory Response: Estrogen modulates the skin's inflammatory response, which is crucial for maintaining skin health and preventing conditions such as acne, eczema, and psoriasis.


As you can see, estrogen is incredibly important to the overall health and integrity of the skin including the skin barrier function. There are many things you can do to combat these effects that do not require hormones. 

Stay tuned for my next post on ways to adjust your routine as your hormones change.

Joy xo

Iva DeLuca   •   April 16, 2024

Thanks for this Joy


Wendy   •   May 22, 2024

Love this! ❤️ more in this topic please 🙏

Joy McCarthy   •   May 23, 2024

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