Menopause is a process that freaks all women out, a word you try to avoid talking about but a change every single woman is inevitably going to go through. It’s a complicated bodily process, but the only comfort in it, is all middle-aged women are in the same boat!
Unfortunately, menopause affects your body internally as well as externally, so there’s not much use in trying to hide from it. Instead, educate yourself on the process because this might make the change a little less intimidating.
The hormonal changes your body goes through is mainly thanks to the slowdown in ovarian activity which includes the decrease in B-Estradiol, the female sex hormone. This in turn results in hot flushes, the most common effect of menopause.
Decreased levels of B-Estradiol causes accelerated ageing of the skin because less levels of oestrogen result in less production and repair of collagen – the protein responsible for skin elasticity, aka our best friend!
If you’re currently going through menopause and have noticed your skin has become more oily, then there’s a good reason for it. Due to the decreased levels of oestrogen, testosterone is becoming more exposed. Testosterone stimulates the sebaceous gland (a small gland which stashes oil) to create thicker oil, creating the appearance of oily skin, which in turn could cause adult acne.
Wrinkles are unavoidable but unfortunately, menopause can speed up ageing skin. Oestrogen is also responsible for depositing fat around the body, but with less oestrogen levels, the fat tends to be deposited to the belly, thighs and bum area. This also means there is less supportive fat around the face, neck, hands and arms which is of course, why the skin starts to sag.
Damage from the sun is heightened during and after menopause. This is because the number of melanocytes in the skin are reduced meaning the body is producing less protective melanin. This is why sun spots are characteristics of ageing skin – because a lack of oestrogen regulation causes melanin synthesis to increase.
So, with the affects menopause has on the skin explained, we hope this has helped the change become a less scary.