Why do I have unsightly hairs starting to grow on my face?

This is such a common problem for women, but it really has been kept as secret women’s business. I treat this problem daily and yet so many women have NEVER spoken to their girlfriends about it. There is no need to be ashamed of it. Yes, it’s unsightly and yes, sometimes it makes us feel less than feminine.  Sometimes it even makes us cry. But fear not, you are not alone and it can be controlled.

Often this is caused by a hormonal imbalance, excess androgen (testosterone) production or something a bit more serious like polycystic ovaries (PCO) or Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), which is more relentless. To treat this you will need consistent hair removal treatments and you will need to accept this as part of your monthly beauty routine. PCO or PCOS hairs are very difficult to treat and even with laser the hair will eventually grow back. PCO or PCOS also have other symptoms such as weight gain, excess body hair on the back of thighs, chest or back, as well as acne. See your GP if you are unsure.

White thick hairs on the chin, one of the many delights of menopause! This is due to the decline in oestrogen production, therefore resulting in higher testosterone levels. The only real way to get rid of these hairs is electrolysis, but it can be extremely painful and will need maintenance.

Why do I have big red sore lumps on my face?

Acne can be caused by many different things, one of them being hormones. In fact, it even has its own category, hormonal acne, and it’s nasty! Hormonal acne is large, painful, red pustules occurring around the jawline under the skin, often infecting the surface of the skin. The most common treatment prescribed by a GP or cosmetic physician is antibiotics or the oral contraceptive pill.

Milder cases can be treated well, and more naturally, with a naturopath. You will however still need to treat the surface of the skin to help prevent the severity of acne breakouts and reduce the risk of scarring. Photodynamic therapy is a harsh but effective treatment and works wonders combined with cosmeceutical skincare and regular exfoliating treatments like microdermabrasion or chemical skin peels.

Why do I have oddly shaped brown marks around my eyes and above my lip?

This can often appear during pregnancy, with the oral contraceptive pill or even after a long stint out in the sun. This is commonly referred to as melasma or chloasma when it occurs during pregnancy.

The only way to treat this type of hyperpigmentation is to prevent further stimulation of the cells that are responsible for producing pigment in our skin (melanocytes). This will often include consulting with a naturopath to treat things holistically.

First, balance the hormones and protect yourself from any UV exposure to prevent further stimulation of the melanocytes. A UVA/UVB sunscreen should be worn religiously and reapplied as directed on the label. Finally, get a good quality tyrosinase inhibitor. A tyrosinase inhibitor works to reduce the amount of pigment being produced by the melanocytes.  It blocks the abnormal pigment from surfacing and can make a huge difference when treating any pigmentation issues. 

I’m working out and eating well, but I’m still getting cellulite on my arms or legs, why?

Cellulite around the bottom and outer thigh can be caused by high levels of oestrogen. Cellulite around the back of the arms can be caused by high levels of testosterone. To test this, see your naturopath who can help you to rebalance.

If you think you have any of these symptoms and would like more advice, contact your nearest skin expert, or come and see me for a complimentary consultation for the month of September 2015.

If you think you’re ready to get the ball rolling with a naturopath, try Claire George at www.clairegeorgenaturopath.com to receive 50% off your initial consultation for the month of September 2015.

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