February 12, 2020 at 04:33PM by CWC
I’m sorry, but the expression “dry as the desert” needs to be rewritten to “dry as winter 2020.” Because, if the moans and groans of the Well+Good office, all of my friends, and you—dear reader—are too be believed, the start of the new year has been thirsty. But what if I told you that dryness may be an issue that goes beyond skin-deep (like, all the way to your hormones)? Derms say that specific phases of your menstrual cycle may be causing—sigh—facial hormonal dryness.
“Your estrogen and progesterone levels are lowest when your period starts. It is during this time that your skin is most susceptible to dryness,” says Mamina Turegano, MD, a dermatologist with Apostrophe. And all the flaky fun doesn’t stop once your period is over. New York City-based dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, MD, says that since low hormone levels linger into the week following your period, you may find yourself jonesing for extra moisturizer then, too. “Your skin is likely the driest in the week after your period, when your hormone levels are low,” he says.
But, what goes down must, um… come up? Dr. Zeichner says that for hormones at least, that rings true. “Hormones start to rise in the second week of your menstrual cycle, culminating in ovulation mid-cycle,” explains the doctor. Meaning, your skin will retrieve some of its dewiness once you’ve reached the seven-day post-period mark. Until then, Dr. Zeichner says you can tweak your normal skin-care regimen to help your skin do the hydrating work even when your hormones leave it high and very, very dry.
When your largest organ is at the stage of peak hormonal dryness, Dr. Zeichner recommends switching up both your cleanser and moisturizer. “The Dove Fragrance-Free Beauty Bar ($4) is among my favorite cleanser recommendations. It is safe enough for both the face and the body and contains moisturizing ingredients to hydrate the skin while you cleanse,” says Dr. Zeichner. Once you’ve wiped away makeup and the dirt of the day, he recommends Eve Lom Moisture Cream ($150) or Vaseline All-Over Body Balm ($6). “Cosmetic-grade petrolatum forms a protective, breathable seal over the skin, but should not block the pores,” says Dr. Zeichner.
Until the weather throws another wrench in your beauty plans, you can consider this dry skin crisis averted.
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