In March, I shared a brief glimpse into my skincare issues. Despite an entire lifetime of mostly-perfect skin, my face started changing.

I thought it was because I moved across the country. I mean, the timing was right. It wasn’t until I got here that everything changed.Hormonal Acne

Maybe it was partially dietary. Maybe it was partially stressed related (I did just jump ship and quit the life I’d built for 6 years).

Maybe it was related to what I tend to call my “lady issues.” Without going into my emotionally frustrating health issues (yet), this is a big issue.

What does hormonal acne look like?

It often appears on the chin. I also have some directly above the edges of my mouth, which tends to indicate other ailments. They tend to reduce with the hormonal acne, though.

Hormonal Acne

After going without a cycle for over 2 years, at least not a regular one, I started to realize that this could be related to PCOS and other menstrual problems of mine.

So, I did a lot of research, especially into Chinese medicine. The places my acne are worst all indicate hormonal acne, so I started doing even more research onto how to heal myself, especially regarding my hormones.

Fortunately, people like Ann Marie of CHEESESLAVE exist, so I started following her recommendations to balance my hormones naturally.

Those mostly regard changing my diet and overall lifestyle, which are easier ones for me.

My remedies, besides eating more fats (coconut oil, high-quality butter I make myself, bone broths, pastured cheeses, grass-fed meats, etc), exercising (a little; I don’t want to throw my body out of whack), and resting, also include natural herbs and some topical treatments.

You’ll see a lot of links to VitaCost below. That’s because I bought most of these products there instead of Amazon, because the prices were WAY better for the same quality. If you’re new to VitaCost, be sure to sign up under my referral link to receive a $10 credit off of your $30 purchase. They give me a $10 credit, too! Just sayin’. ;)

DISCLAIMER: I’m not a doctor or any kind of health professional. I’m just some chick who Googles a lot, and is trying out different remedies for herself. They don’t always work for me, and might not work for you. Do your own research, and participate at your own risk.

Herbal Supplements

Hormonal Acne

I take Agnus Castus/Vitex/Chaste Berry supplements daily. Mine are from Puritan’s Pride, and I take up to 3 a day. These have helped regulate my cycles in the past, so I went for them again this time around. Since I received the following blend, I’ve started taking less of this (and none of the kelp).

Hormonal Acne

Herbal Hormone Complex from VitaCost: Instead of buying and taking every “female hormonal health” herb on the market, I found that VitaCost’s hormone complex has pretty much all of the ones I wanted to start taking again, including Black Cohosh, Saw Palmetto, and Dong Quai. It even has Kelp, which I was taking separately for iodine (in case of a problem since I only use sea salt). Interesting side note: this complex smells EXACTLY like an herbal mix an acupuncturist of mine back in Albuquerque prescribed for the same problems.

Foods

Hormonal Acne Remedies

Healing Hormonal Acne

This 54 oz vat of coconut oil is $21.99…I can’t help but buy it for that price!

Organic, Unrefined Coconut Oil: Whether it’s Tropical Traditions or VitaCost’s extremely well-priced coconut oil, I take at least 2 tablespoons a day. I take it for a variety of reasons, not all of which are relevant for this post. But, I do find that the acne has started to wane a bit since I incorporated more into my life. 


Grass-Fed Beef: This happens more often than not. I feel tired and run down. Something’s off. Then, we have steak for dinner. The next morning, my cycle starts. That sounds like an iron or protein deficiency or something, but it’s happened three times in the past year. So, I’m trying to be better about balancing my nutritional needs. Once those are met, the hormones will follow suit.

Probiotics: I consume insane quantities of yogurt or kefir on a daily basis. At least half a quart of grass-fed, organic, creamline whole milk. It’s awesome!

**No More Crap**: I try not to eat ANY processed foods, including crackers, chips, candy, etc. I am an ingredients list snob, and would rather make it myself than have it any other way. No more meat shot full of antibiotics and hormones. No more pesticides on my foods, or GMOs in my cupboard. I soak, sprout, make from scratch, and research everything I eat. There are some exceptions every once in a while, but this has made a BIG difference to my mood and overall health (digestive, too).

Topical Treatments

Hormonal Acne Remedies

I use this in my homemade toothpaste recipe too, whether I should or not.


Green Clay: This stuff draws out the inflammation completely, and is my go-to resource when I notice increased inflammation. For example, the weather changed suddenly here, and I started sweating way more at work. My hormonal acne was much more pronounced, so I used the green clay. It knocked it down to barely visible!

Tip: Use raw apple cider vinegar to hydrate your clay instead of water when making a facial mask. It becomes even more therapeutic!

Hormonal Acne

I love it when my chin isn’t the first thing someone notices when talking to me! This is after a green clay treatment (with ACV).

Oil Cleansing: Twice now I’ve used coconut oil to cleanse my face, and I’ve noticed major improvements in the inflammation. I do want to emphasize that many people do NOT recommend coconut oil for your face as it can be comodogenic, but I haven’t had an issue here. To learn more about oil cleansing, I recommend reading this post from Mommypotamous, including a handy video!

Organic Apple Cider Vinegar with ”Mother”: I use this occasionally as a toner on my skin, which helps soothe the acne.

Clary Sage: I was using a mix of Clary Sage suspended in whipped coconut oil for a while to help regulate my cycle, but I’m not sure if it worked or if I was doing it right. Any tips, EO users out there? ;)

One thing I’ve found rather challenging since I started eating FOR my body instead of IN SPITE of it, is that I haven’t lost a pound. I haven’t gained a pound, nor lost. I feel better. I have more energy. My body is starting to act more like a body should, but the weight hasn’t budged.

Which tells me there is probably more to this hormone imbalance than I’d like to admit (I have been rather avoidant about all of it since it scares me).

Basically, all of this has helped, but it’s time to see a doctor so we can run some tests. Perhaps I should share my medical drama regarding all of this eventually, but let’s just say…I’ve been negligent after everything else that happened.

With all of the above measures, including changing my diet, exercising more, and learning to de-stress, I do see major changes and am hopeful for the future.

For more great ideas, I highly recommend reading the post, “Got Acne? Natural DIY Ideas for Pimples, Blackheads, and Scarring,” by Cheree of Natural & Frugal: Raising 6 Kids!

Do you struggle with hormonal acne? PCOS? Infertility? Have you ever tried herbal remedies? Tell your story!

This post was featured on Wellness Wednesdays.

SharedHomestead Barn Hop #111, Natural Living Monday, Wellness Wednesdays, Wildcrafting Wednesdays

Disclaimer: I will be compensated financially for any purchases made through the links above as an affiliate.

Paid Endorsement Disclosure: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Disclaimer: None of the posts on this blog should serve as medical advice. I am not a medical professional, and I advise you to seek out professional assistance before making any major lifestyle changes.
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  • http://twitter.com/mycrazyrichlife Francieidy

    I’ll have to try some of these. I’ve had hormonal acne for 12 years and have tried everything (literally everything) It’s cleared up some since I’ve stopped bothering with it, but maybe these herbal techniques will help. Thanks for sharing.

    • http://rachaelmcleveland.com/ Rachael Cleveland

      You’re welcome! It does feel so easy to just let it go, but there’s that obsessive part of my brain that sees it as a place to heal. Hopefully, one or two of these can bring you some healing and relief! Thank you for reading and commenting! :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/kelliewalton Kellie Jensen Walton

    Since you asked – yes, yes and more yes. I was diagnosed with PCOS in 1998 – prior to that, I had no fertility issues … in fact, I got pregnant with little effort or 2nd thought. (I assumed, naively, that everyone did.) After almost 2 years of Metformin, I finally got pregnant again in 1999 – which resulted in a stillborn birth in early 2000 and 3 more years of secondary infertility and various hormone treatments. During a routine exam in 2004, I tested positive for aggressive precancerous cells with ended in an emergency hysterectomy. Because I chose to keep my ovaries, I still have extreme hormonal imbalances which could be at least partially controlled with a change in diet … I haven’t been motivated to do so yet. Maybe someday. FYI – the periods of time in the last several years that I consumed large quantities of coconut oil were definitely the most healthiest. I have no idea why I don’t take it regularly … another one of those mental things I guess. Oh yeah – when I still had the ute, my periods were SO BAD … heavy, irregular, lasted forever etc, I did find though that high doses of cinnamon capsules improved things considerably. It was like magic for me, and my doctor tried telling me there was no proof cinnamon helped with PCOS, but I’d swear by it.

    • http://rachaelmcleveland.com/ Rachael Cleveland

      Wow, Kellie, I had no idea! Thank you so much for sharing this; it’s very touching and helpful. I wish you the best of luck on your journey and recommend you get back to coconut oil if it helped! :) <3 Rachael

  • elle mental

    Lavender Essential oil is very soothing and healing to skin. I use it on my Rosecae, which is a flushing on the nose, cheeks and chin with tiny pimple-like bumps, especially on the cheeks and chin. If I use the lavender consistently, every morning and evening when I clean my face, The flushing and pimples disappear within a day or two. Tea tree oil will also help if it is actually acne and not some sort of response to a food allergy or other undiscovered situation. Tea tree smells strong but it is actually quite gentle. I even use it on shingles when I have an outbreak. It is a life saver. I make a face moisturizer using organic coconut oil, lavender, clary sage, carrot oil and rose otto, that I put on my face at night. I really like the way it makes my skin feel and I have no Rosecae problems when I use it.

    • http://rachaelmcleveland.com/ Rachael Cleveland

      This is great info! I think I’ll invest in some lavender EO in my next stock up as I’ve heard about its soothing benefits a ton now. Thank you so much for reading and sharing! I always love your comments. :)

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  • Amanda @ Natural Living Mamma

    Great post! I had PCOS and endometriosis. Both resolved when I switched to a whole foods diet and went gluten free. I still use herbs and good fats to maintain hormone health, especially around “that time of the month” but mostly, I am able to regulate things with a good whole food diet! Congratulations on taking control of your own health! Thanks for sharing on Natural Living Monday!

  • Trisha Eldridge Gilkerson

    I hope you continue to write updates on your journey. I know it’s frustrating when the weight doesn’t budge, but keep at it! Thank you for linking up with Wellness Wednesday. Looking forward to hearing more from you this week :)

    • http://rachaelmcleveland.com/ Rachael Cleveland

      Aw, thank you, Trisha! It can be a challenge, but my body will respond when I’m doing the right things. Glad to have you here! :)

  • Eva Worthing

    Couple of things. I have PCOS and have started the Trim Healthy Mama diet and have lost 30 pounds since May (easily)! I HIGHLY recommend you look into it. You are already eating better, you just need to separate your carbs and fats and you’ll lose. :) Second, do you think the supplements that you take could replace Metformin? I’d like to have another baby BUT I need to get my ovulation under control. Thanks!

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