lifesnotfair

Treating Hormonal Acne The Natural Way?

77 posts in this topic

Hi! First of all sorry about any grammar mistakes, english is my second language.

I never had acne growing up/as a teenager but after taking a plan b pill at the age of 22 (2 years ago..) my skin changed. I started getting moderate acne within months of taking it. I went on a Dianette(bc pill) and after that my acne got really severe. After 8 months of waiting for it to pass I switched to Yasmin and my skin got a little better but never completely clear. About 3 months ago I tossed all the pills because I had bad side effects + it didn't even keep my skin clear. I started taking vitex when I quit the pill to prevent any major post pill break out.

At the moment I'd say my acne is mild but it's still very much there and I feel like it might be getting worse again. I'm done with all the drugs that doctors have to offer. I've tried it all (accutane=allergic reaction, antibiotics=upset stomach+didn't help my skin, bc=bad migraines+ didn't keep me clear) and I'm now trying to find a more natural way to treat my acne. I just have to figure out what's the best thing to try since there are so many supplements out there.

So obviously my hormones are out of balance. I'd like to have them checked but my doc wouldn't let me. So I just have to figure out what's wrong by myself. I've read that the hormones that cause acne are either estrogen, progesterone or androgens. You can either have too little or too much of them both ways it can result in acne. Is there any way of knowing which one of these hormones is causing me trouble? Which would be the best supplement for balancing them? There are so many of them: saw palmetto, Don quai, Vitex, DIM, DHEA....?

So far I've tried vitex but I don't know if it's helping or not. I still break out but then again I've recently quit the pill. So I'm just gonna stay on it and see how it goes. I've also ordered DIM but it hasn't arrived yet.

What would you recommend? What has worked for you?

p.s Sorry for such a long text...

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Vitex is very often suggested to be taken in combination with saw palmetto. I started using the sp at first 5 months ago and i added the vitex just before 35 days. Unfortunately unless you have your hormones checked no one can tell you which one is causing the imbalance.

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Vitex helped me a lot the first 2 times I took it (one was for a year, the 2nd one for 8 months or so). But the third time, my stomach couldn't tolerate it so I switched to DIM (plain DIM, not the blend) and WOW, I am so glad I did. Read the user hearts' thread about how she cured her acne using DIM and natural progesterone cream, it's very informative.

I also use inositol, it got me about 90% clear, and 99% clear on good days. Inositol is the mildest option and some women only really need that, not stronger herbs like vitex and DIM.

Stay away from saw palmetto.

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Current regimen: garlic supplements [as needed], Enzymedica gluten blocker [as needed], nicadan [not sure if it works yet]. I try to simplify as much as I can. Don't take more supplements than you need....try one at a time and be patient.

The supplements that really helped me when my acne was at its worst: inositol, DIM [not as frequently now!] digestive enzymes [don't need them every day anymore, only on cheat days], herpanacine & vitamin C with rose hips/ low acid [not every day], regular sun exposure for vitamin D3, superoxide dismutase (SOD) enzyme supplements. NOTE: I do not recommend DIM for long term use, and I do not recommend hormonal creams without doctor supervision.

Lifestyle & Skin Care: acupuncture, regular exercise/ yoga, low histamine diet, avoiding unnecessary stress, balancing skin's PH (using Image Ormedics), using distilled/ filtered water to wash face, occasional high frequency facials...

 

Grocery list:

 

** Find the cause, find the cure **

** If you have a question for me, please ask it publicly so that others can benefit from the discussion**

 

 


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Vitex helped me a lot the first 2 times I took it (one was for a year, the 2nd one for 8 months or so). But the third time, my stomach couldn't tolerate it so I switched to DIM (plain DIM, not the blend) and WOW, I am so glad I did. Read the user hearts' thread about how she cured her acne using DIM and natural progesterone cream, it's very informative.

I also use inositol, it got me about 90% clear, and 99% clear on good days. Inositol is the mildest option and some women only really need that, not stronger herbs like vitex and DIM.

Stay away from saw palmetto.

Thanks for the replies!

How long did it take for the vitex to work for you? I've been taking 800 mg for 3 months. I lowered my dose to 400mg and noticed more break outs so I think it's helping some. Do you know if it's okay to use DIM and vitex at the same time?

I've actually read that topic before and yes it was helpful. But I don't think I could use the cream since my cycle is irregular and I wouldn't know which days to apply it.

I've never heard of inositol I'll have to look into it.

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Hey there :)

I have been on most things you have - Diannette made my skin TEN times worse, Yasmin didn't clear me at all really. I went on accutane twice which cleared me for about a year each time before acne came back in full force. I then found out I have pcos so my acne is hormonal. I have had great success with Agnus Castus (Vitex) it took about three months to start seeing the full effects of it and I take it along with evening primrose oil. Been on Agnus Castus for about six months now.

In terms of figuring out which one is right for you - it depends on your hormonal imbalance. As I live in England we have the NHS when they tested me for PCOS and found out my androgens were too high - so I thought saw palmetto would be good for me to take as it acts as a testosterone blocker. however, after being on this a month i came off it because i got brain fog and i just didn't feel right on it. It's best to listen to your body in these cases. So I agree with WishClean about staying away from saw palmetto.

If your periods are irregular, agnus castus would be great for you as it works on regulating your periods and in turn clears your hormonal acne. Evening primrose oil i think is just a great one to take in general for skin and balancing hormones. I have never tried DIM but have heard many good things about it. You can google which hormone imbalances cause which effects and try and match up to any side effects you may be suffering from? I hope this helps xx


Gracie-Robin

P.C.O.S

Vitamins/Supplements: Vitex (agnus castus), A Herbal Mix made by a Naturopath, DIM Plus, Zinc, Vitamin A, Milk Thistle, Calcium, Matcha Green tea, Myo-Inositol powder, Omega 3 Fish Oil, Evening Primrose Oil.

Diet: Dairy free (mainly due to intolerance), low carb, low sugar, no processed foods

Lifestyle: I run every day. I gym three/four times a week.

In the past: Various Antibiotics, Birth Control Pills (Dianette, Yasmin, Cilest), Zineryt, Benzoyl Peroxide, Two courses of Roaccutane.


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If vitex works for you, then go for it. Just a warning though, vitex can cause more imbalances if you keep taking it longer than you need it. You have to lower the dose after about 6 months, and move on to a low maintenance dose otherwise it can mess up other hormones (LH, prolactin, and possibly others). In my case, both times I went off vitex, all hell broke loose so it's possibly one of those herbs you always have to be on at a low dose to get the full effect. Also, for me, vitex caused unwanted hair growth (facial and other parts). Don't get me wrong, it helped me way more than other hormonal treatments, but it came at a price.


Current regimen: garlic supplements [as needed], Enzymedica gluten blocker [as needed], nicadan [not sure if it works yet]. I try to simplify as much as I can. Don't take more supplements than you need....try one at a time and be patient.

The supplements that really helped me when my acne was at its worst: inositol, DIM [not as frequently now!] digestive enzymes [don't need them every day anymore, only on cheat days], herpanacine & vitamin C with rose hips/ low acid [not every day], regular sun exposure for vitamin D3, superoxide dismutase (SOD) enzyme supplements. NOTE: I do not recommend DIM for long term use, and I do not recommend hormonal creams without doctor supervision.

Lifestyle & Skin Care: acupuncture, regular exercise/ yoga, low histamine diet, avoiding unnecessary stress, balancing skin's PH (using Image Ormedics), using distilled/ filtered water to wash face, occasional high frequency facials...

 

Grocery list:

 

** Find the cause, find the cure **

** If you have a question for me, please ask it publicly so that others can benefit from the discussion**

 

 


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That's the thing, I don't know if it's helping my skin or not. I've quit bc about 3 months ago so my skin might still be freaking out from that. I've also been taking vitex for 3 months so I don't know what my skin would be like without it and I'm not too eager to find out.. I'm not 100% clear. I've got some small bumps and clogged pores and one inflamed pustule coming up atm. So it's not super bad but I'm still not happy with it.

I've read some reviews about the DIM that I ordered(source naturals) and now I'm kind of scared since it seems a lot of people have been allergic to it. Mine still hasn't arrived yet.

What brand of DIM have you been using that worked?

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Small bumps and clogged pores are usually the last things to clear....if you are no longer getting cystic acne, that's a positive sign. For the clogged pores and smaller zits you may have to get a facial with extractions or peels to get rid of them.

I use Olympian Labs DIM...it's just DIM, not mixed with other stuff. I don't recommend taking both vitex and DIM, I would pick one or the other personally.

Edited by WishClean

Current regimen: garlic supplements [as needed], Enzymedica gluten blocker [as needed], nicadan [not sure if it works yet]. I try to simplify as much as I can. Don't take more supplements than you need....try one at a time and be patient.

The supplements that really helped me when my acne was at its worst: inositol, DIM [not as frequently now!] digestive enzymes [don't need them every day anymore, only on cheat days], herpanacine & vitamin C with rose hips/ low acid [not every day], regular sun exposure for vitamin D3, superoxide dismutase (SOD) enzyme supplements. NOTE: I do not recommend DIM for long term use, and I do not recommend hormonal creams without doctor supervision.

Lifestyle & Skin Care: acupuncture, regular exercise/ yoga, low histamine diet, avoiding unnecessary stress, balancing skin's PH (using Image Ormedics), using distilled/ filtered water to wash face, occasional high frequency facials...

 

Grocery list:

 

** Find the cause, find the cure **

** If you have a question for me, please ask it publicly so that others can benefit from the discussion**

 

 


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Thanks for helping!

I do still get deep and painful pimples just not as often and not as many.. And the vitex doesn't seem to be doing anything for my body acne which is annoying, I haven't find anything that works for it.

Once the DIM arrives I'm going to give it a go. I hope there won't be an initial breakout...

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When I was on vitex, it took a few months for the acne to completely go away. But I also had to watch my diet to stay clear. The third time I tried vitex unfortunately I had an initial breakout and stomach pains so I switched to DIM with good results.

Body acne can be a reaction to certain fabrics or laundry detergent.


Current regimen: garlic supplements [as needed], Enzymedica gluten blocker [as needed], nicadan [not sure if it works yet]. I try to simplify as much as I can. Don't take more supplements than you need....try one at a time and be patient.

The supplements that really helped me when my acne was at its worst: inositol, DIM [not as frequently now!] digestive enzymes [don't need them every day anymore, only on cheat days], herpanacine & vitamin C with rose hips/ low acid [not every day], regular sun exposure for vitamin D3, superoxide dismutase (SOD) enzyme supplements. NOTE: I do not recommend DIM for long term use, and I do not recommend hormonal creams without doctor supervision.

Lifestyle & Skin Care: acupuncture, regular exercise/ yoga, low histamine diet, avoiding unnecessary stress, balancing skin's PH (using Image Ormedics), using distilled/ filtered water to wash face, occasional high frequency facials...

 

Grocery list:

 

** Find the cause, find the cure **

** If you have a question for me, please ask it publicly so that others can benefit from the discussion**

 

 


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Well I've been on vitex for good 4 months now and I still break out so I don't know. It has helped with my PMS symptoms, I hardly get any cramps anymore and I use to suffer from pretty bad ones before so I guess I'll keep taking it nevertheless ..

My DIM finally arrived today but the safety seal came off when I opened it (so it had been open the whole time I guess) so I don't know if it is safe to use it.

I never had issues with body acne before taking the pill so I don't think it has anything to do with fabrics or anything like that.

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Well I've been on vitex for good 4 months now and I still break out so I don't know. It has helped with my PMS symptoms, I hardly get any cramps anymore and I use to suffer from pretty bad ones before so I guess I'll keep taking it nevertheless ..

My DIM finally arrived today but the safety seal came off when I opened it (so it had been open the whole time I guess) so I don't know if it is safe to use it.

I never had issues with body acne before taking the pill so I don't think it has anything to do with fabrics or anything like that.

How much vitex and what kind of vitex are you taking? The most effective is the tincture. If your PMS symptoms have reduced, it means it's working...it's usually taken to help with PMS symptoms among other things. My first and most successful time on vitex, I was taking it with evening primrose, acidophilus in the morning (to maximize absorption and help any digestive issues), and a multivitamin. I didn't adjust my diet or anything the first time, I just decreased my daily calories and increased my exercise. So maybe if vitex alone isn't working for the acne (but is working for PMS), you need to combine it with something else. Vitex won't fix all your hormones, so maybe you have a more complex issue. DIM could be what you need.

I would call the company and mention that the seal was open before you got it.


Current regimen: garlic supplements [as needed], Enzymedica gluten blocker [as needed], nicadan [not sure if it works yet]. I try to simplify as much as I can. Don't take more supplements than you need....try one at a time and be patient.

The supplements that really helped me when my acne was at its worst: inositol, DIM [not as frequently now!] digestive enzymes [don't need them every day anymore, only on cheat days], herpanacine & vitamin C with rose hips/ low acid [not every day], regular sun exposure for vitamin D3, superoxide dismutase (SOD) enzyme supplements. NOTE: I do not recommend DIM for long term use, and I do not recommend hormonal creams without doctor supervision.

Lifestyle & Skin Care: acupuncture, regular exercise/ yoga, low histamine diet, avoiding unnecessary stress, balancing skin's PH (using Image Ormedics), using distilled/ filtered water to wash face, occasional high frequency facials...

 

Grocery list:

 

** Find the cause, find the cure **

** If you have a question for me, please ask it publicly so that others can benefit from the discussion**

 

 


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I take 400mg twice a day. I don't know what kind it is but the brand is Nature's way and it says in the bottle that it is from the fruit. Yeah at least it's doing something :D I eat a pretty healthy diet and food never impacted my skin before. But maybe now that my hormones are going crazy that's changed I don't know. I also take a good multivitamin. I'm hoping that DIM would do the trick for me once I can get my hands on it. I e-mailed the company and they said I shouldn't use it so I'm ordering a new bottle tonight :/ sigh


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So I finally started DIM 3 days ago. I also cut the vitex down to 400 mg a day instead of 800. I've been breaking out pretty badly lately so I hope I'll get some good results. Obviously there's no changes yet

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Okay I thought I'd give you an update incase anyone's interested..
So I've been taking DIM for about a month now and and I've been braking out pretty badly since starting it. I guess it's not for me and I won't be taking it anymore.

I have an appointment with an endocrinologist (a doctor specialized in hormonal imbalances) next week and hopefully she'll let me get my hormone levels checked. I don't want to further mess up my hormones by taking all these supplements before knowing what's actually wrong.

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Yeah, that's reasonable. Provided that the tests actually show something. If they don't, you should do saliva and/or urine testing, which is more accurate.

Btw, DIM should be taken on its own first (not the Nature's Way mixture) because other DIM supplements contain soy (problematic for some, esp. if you have PCOS) and other herbs. I take olympian labs DIM in a veggie capsule.


Current regimen: garlic supplements [as needed], Enzymedica gluten blocker [as needed], nicadan [not sure if it works yet]. I try to simplify as much as I can. Don't take more supplements than you need....try one at a time and be patient.

The supplements that really helped me when my acne was at its worst: inositol, DIM [not as frequently now!] digestive enzymes [don't need them every day anymore, only on cheat days], herpanacine & vitamin C with rose hips/ low acid [not every day], regular sun exposure for vitamin D3, superoxide dismutase (SOD) enzyme supplements. NOTE: I do not recommend DIM for long term use, and I do not recommend hormonal creams without doctor supervision.

Lifestyle & Skin Care: acupuncture, regular exercise/ yoga, low histamine diet, avoiding unnecessary stress, balancing skin's PH (using Image Ormedics), using distilled/ filtered water to wash face, occasional high frequency facials...

 

Grocery list:

 

** Find the cause, find the cure **

** If you have a question for me, please ask it publicly so that others can benefit from the discussion**

 

 


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I had my appointment today and the doctor was really nice. She said my body probably produces too much androgens and I should get my hormones(prolactin, testosterone, DHEA) tested. Those tests need to be done on day 3-5 on your cycle so I'll have to wait a while but I'm really happy to finally get them tested!

Yeah that's right soy and other herbs may cause problems for some people. The DIM I took says it only has vitamin E and DIM in it so I don't think that was the problem for me.

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Vitex helped me a lot the first 2 times I took it (one was for a year, the 2nd one for 8 months or so). But the third time, my stomach couldn't tolerate it so I switched to DIM (plain DIM, not the blend) and WOW, I am so glad I did. Read the user hearts' thread about how she cured her acne using DIM and natural progesterone cream, it's very informative.

I also use inositol, it got me about 90% clear, and 99% clear on good days. Inositol is the mildest option and some women only really need that, not stronger herbs like vitex and DIM.

Stay away from saw palmetto.

do you use powder Inositol or the pills?

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do you use powder Inositol or the pills?

I use inositol powder and DIM. Also digestive enzymes when I cheat on my diet


Current regimen: garlic supplements [as needed], Enzymedica gluten blocker [as needed], nicadan [not sure if it works yet]. I try to simplify as much as I can. Don't take more supplements than you need....try one at a time and be patient.

The supplements that really helped me when my acne was at its worst: inositol, DIM [not as frequently now!] digestive enzymes [don't need them every day anymore, only on cheat days], herpanacine & vitamin C with rose hips/ low acid [not every day], regular sun exposure for vitamin D3, superoxide dismutase (SOD) enzyme supplements. NOTE: I do not recommend DIM for long term use, and I do not recommend hormonal creams without doctor supervision.

Lifestyle & Skin Care: acupuncture, regular exercise/ yoga, low histamine diet, avoiding unnecessary stress, balancing skin's PH (using Image Ormedics), using distilled/ filtered water to wash face, occasional high frequency facials...

 

Grocery list:

 

** Find the cause, find the cure **

** If you have a question for me, please ask it publicly so that others can benefit from the discussion**

 

 


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I've struggled with acne for years and so far only birth control helped (dianette). I tried everything else. It goes to show what works for someone might not work for someone else!

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I'm just going to keep updating my situation here as a personal log

So I had my blood test done on friday and the results should be back in 1-2 weeks. My skin has been REALLY bad lately and I don't know if it was the DIM that triggered it or what. I also stopped taking vitex a while ago because i wanted my hormones to be "in their natural state" when taking the blood test. I started taking it again after the test.. I have 5 big cysts on my cheeks and a ton of smaller zits too. My chest is also a mess and bp that used to help with it doesn't seem to be doing much anymore. I'm really depressed about this. Just when my old scarring was fading awayI get a ton more.. GREAT!

Anyway I hope the test result will at least show something helpful

Edited by lifesnotfair

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Skin is just getting worse.. I wake up with new brake outs every day. And they're all the deep painful cystic kind too. I already got a lot of new scars that will take years to fade. topicals doesn't seem to be helping much. I got my prolactin come back normal and testo was also in the normal rage although in the higher end. I'm still waiting for the rest of my results before calling my doctor.

I really hope that this is just a phase... I can't leave the house with this face:(

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Skin is just getting worse.. I wake up with new brake outs every day. And they're all the deep painful cystic kind too. I already got a lot of new scars that will take years to fade. topicals doesn't seem to be helping much. I got my prolactin come back normal and testo was also in the normal rage although in the higher end. I'm still waiting for the rest of my results before calling my doctor.

I really hope that this is just a phase... I can't leave the house with this face:(

sorry to hear that. IF it helps, I find lactic acid peels to be helpful for everything: pigmentation, scarring, and acne. IF you can't afford them, then try a yogurt and honey mask.

If your testosterone is in the high-normal range, then it's likely you have an androgen sensitivity. The normal range is far too broad to cover everyone's needs.


Current regimen: garlic supplements [as needed], Enzymedica gluten blocker [as needed], nicadan [not sure if it works yet]. I try to simplify as much as I can. Don't take more supplements than you need....try one at a time and be patient.

The supplements that really helped me when my acne was at its worst: inositol, DIM [not as frequently now!] digestive enzymes [don't need them every day anymore, only on cheat days], herpanacine & vitamin C with rose hips/ low acid [not every day], regular sun exposure for vitamin D3, superoxide dismutase (SOD) enzyme supplements. NOTE: I do not recommend DIM for long term use, and I do not recommend hormonal creams without doctor supervision.

Lifestyle & Skin Care: acupuncture, regular exercise/ yoga, low histamine diet, avoiding unnecessary stress, balancing skin's PH (using Image Ormedics), using distilled/ filtered water to wash face, occasional high frequency facials...

 

Grocery list:

 

** Find the cause, find the cure **

** If you have a question for me, please ask it publicly so that others can benefit from the discussion**

 

 


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Thank you WishClean!
I was going to try dermarolling for my old indented scars before this break out. Obviously I cant do that now with the active acne but hopefully if my skin ever calms down I can give it a go.


Yeah I haven't talked to my doctor yet but that's what i thought too. My testo was 70 and they say anywhere between 19-100 is normal. They also tested my DHEA and Andro(both androgens) but i haven't gotten the results back yet.. If androgens are my problem then maybe Spiro would help. That's pretty much the only thing I haven't tried yet But I'll have to talk to my doctor once I have all the results and see what she thinks. I just hate this waiting...

Edited by lifesnotfair

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So I finally got all the results back and my DHEA level is twice as high as it should be. Testosterone is also on the higher end although still in normal range. My doctor is on vacation so I can't call her yet but at least now I know what's causing me trouble. Hopefully she'll be able to fix it too.
I'm still breaking out but the vitex seems to be helping a little. Definitely not clear at all but better than it was a few weeks ago.

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