Perimenopause: What to Expect and How to Get Relief from Its Symptoms

1. What is perimenopause?

a. When does perimenopause start?

b. How long does perimenopause last?

2. What are the common signs of perimenopause?

a. Can perimenopause cause acne?

b. Can perimenopause cause eczema?

3. Are there perimenopause skin treatments?


Perimenopause can be a hormonal roller coaster. This is a period of great change in a woman’s life, but it’s also filled with a lot of confusion. Perimenopause is the precursor to menopause, and its symptoms go beyond hot flashes and increased sensitivity; it also significantly affects skin.


Luckily, there are a few products on the market specifically designed for perimenopausal skin to help it stay strong and hydrated, as well as ones that help to repair a damaged skin barrier. In this article , we explain everything from perimenopause symptoms to treatments and how to find the best skincare for perimenopause to help you feel your best on a daily basis, regardless of your age.

1. What is perimenopause?


Perimenopause means “around menopause” and refers to the time of transition from when the body makes the natural progression to menopause. It’s the start of the hormonal shifts that send a woman’s period into an erratic pattern due to the decline in ovarian function. You might be wondering what the difference between perimenopause and post-menopause is, and that answer is simple: A woman moves out of perimenopause and into menopause (or post-menopause) once she has missed her period for 12 months in a row.


a. When does perimenopause start?


Unfortunately, this shift in hormones is not very punctual, so it’s different for everyone. It can happen as early as your mid-30s, although most women start to experience it in their 40s.


b. How long does perimenopause last?


It varies greatly from one woman to the next, but according to Harvard Medical School, the average duration is three to four years. For some, however, this period is accelerated and can last just a few months; for others, it can be as long as a decade.


2. What are the common signs of perimenopause?


No matter how amazing your attitude is about perimenopause, the symptoms are real. The signs of perimenopause are remarkably similar to those of menopause. Most notable are hot flashes, perimenopause night sweats (which can lead to sleep problems), fatigue, irregular periods and dry, irritated skin. The results of the latter may not be noticeable in the first few years of perimenopause, but the drop in hormone levels (progesterone, testosterone and, most notably, estrogen) will make for thinner, less resilient skin. The shift in the levels of estrogen—the main female hormone—can also leave skin more vulnerable to redness, bumps and other signs of irritation.


a. Can perimenopause cause acne?


One of the perimenopause symptoms that is often overlooked is acne. Some women experience breakouts during this phase for much the same reason it curses our puberty years: hormonal imbalance. This is likely due to a decrease in estrogen levels or an increase in androgens—male sex hormones—like testosterone. Androgens stimulate the skin’s oil glands; when they overstimulate, it can lead to acne and even the appearance of facial hair.


b. Can perimenopause cause eczema?


Perimenopause can’t cause eczema (medically known as atopic dermatitis) because it’s a genetic skin condition, but it can aggravate or trigger it, leading to flare-ups. According to the Canadian Dermatology Association, 17% of Canadians are plagued by this hereditary condition that causes inflammation, resulting in red, scaly, irritated and itchy skin. Hormonal changes can spark eczema flare-ups because of the drop in estrogen that occurs during perimenopause, menopause and pregnancy. This decrease causes the skin to lose water, which can interfere with its ability to maintain moisture levels and leave skin dry with a weakened skin barrier that can make eczema worse.


3. Are there perimenopause skin treatments?


We’ve talked a lot about estrogen and its slow decline during perimenopause, but why is it such a big deal? Well, the hormone fuels a lot of things, including supporting healthy functioning skin cells. When estrogen levels take a nosedive, the skin can’t protect itself because it can’t produce collagen the way it once could and it has a very difficult time staying hydrated. As a result, the skin loses its glow and elasticity.


When it comes to perimenopausal skincare, the first thing to look for is a nourishing ultra-refreshing night cream for menopause. Vichy created the Neovadiol skincare range more than 15 years ago, specifically for women going through this stage in life. It has skincare ingredients that offset the impacts of perimenopause and menopause. Vichy Neovadiol Night Compensating Complex was designed to not only replenish and protect skin but also combat hot flashes and night sweats. Once applied, it decreases the skin’s temperature by 2.7 degrees.


The neck is another area that should be given some extra attention. A firming neck cream is a good place to start. Neck skin is naturally much thinner and drier than face skin, so it ages faster. Over time, the weakening of the neck muscles and loss in elasticity can cause “turkey neck.” Vichy Neovadiol Phytosculpt is the answer. It fights sagginess and the lack of firmness with an ingredient called Tensing Phytosterol, which is derived from wild ferns. It stimulates collagen production and improves elasticity and firmness.


Slow down the aging process and relieve the physical discomfort that perimenopausal symptoms can cause by adding an eye and lip contour cream specifically for menopause and a nourishing day cream for mature skin to your routine. Vichy Neovadiol Compensating Complex is so much more than just an anti-aging cream. It tackles dryness and the loss of skin density and structure, all of which are directly linked to menopause.

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