Well... you’re not alone, and the reason may well relate to your hormones.

You may be surprised by how much responsibility your hormones have, most of us just relate them to our monthly cycles, but they’re actually responsible for hundreds of different functions each day.

Hormones are chemical messengers that travel through the bloodstream to tell your cells what to do and when to do it.  This makes them one of the most powerful and influential chemicals in the human body.

Hormonal acne is largely believed to be linked to testosterone (a male hormone). Research suggests that people suffering from more severe acne, have higher levels of testosterone. 


  • Breakouts are primarily around the chin & jaw line and sometimes the cheek & neck.
  • Breakouts can be mild or severe.
  • Pimples can be more common around that time of the month.

Hormonal acne skincare results grid

Hormones play a significant role in determining how your skin functions and are often blamed for acne. They also work to regulate your growth, development, metabolism, tissue function, sexual function, reproduction, the way your body uses food, your body’s reaction to emergencies and even your moods.


  •  Avoid high GI foods such as sugar, highly refined carbohydrates and highly processed foods.
    • All of these foods turn into sugars in the body which elevates your insulin levels - high insulin levels can result in breakouts. Include skin-friendly foods into your daily diet.

  •  Avoid dairy
    • Dairy is one of the biggest known food triggers for acne prone skin. You can try cutting dairy out of your diet to see if it's a contributor to your acne, you need to commit to the process for about 3 weeks to see if it makes a difference. Make sure you keep an eye on your calcium levels and use good dairy alternatives like Oat milk with added calcium. Avoid soy.

  •  Be aware of stress
    • Stress can have a massive negative impact on your skin. Spend some time each day in a relaxed state of mind, especially whilst doing your skincare routine. Try incorporating massage into your cleansing step to relax your skin and your mind.  Staying calm helps your skin to stay calm.

  •  Don’t strip your skin
    • Stripping the skin with harsh products that contain Benzoyl Peroxide and Salicylic Acid, irritates your skin and sends your oil glands into overdrive. If you are already suffering from high oil production due to your hormone levels, this is only going to make the problem worse. Use products that work with your skin’s natural functions.

  •  Get enough sleep
    • Not getting enough sleep makes it harder for your body to process sugars and also results in you craving sugary foods, which as we know is not good for your skin. Get 7-8 hours of beauty sleep each night.

“Try to avoid heavily processed, sugary food as much as possible, a good rule is, if your grandmother wouldn’t recognise it, don’t eat it!”-Ebony, Founder, real-u Skincare


Dairy, stress, sugar and lack of sleep are 4 things that can trigger hormonal acne




Testosterone is believed to be responsible for the production of sebum (oil) in your skin. The higher your testosterone levels, the higher chance of pimples. Testosterone primarily belongs to the male hormone group typically called androgens and are largely responsible for the development of boys into men.


Oestrogen and progesterone are primarily female hormones and are responsible for female reproductive maturity. You know, when you grow breasts, have your period, become pregnant… all things girly. 


Insulin maintains blood glucose (sugar) levels. High levels of glucose in the blood results in increased levels of insulin being produced, more specifically, insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1). Studies have found that higher the levels of IGF-1 in your blood leads to higher levels of sebum being produced in the skin.  Put simply, eat too much sugar and your skin becomes oilier and more likely to breakout.

Interestingly, both boys and girls have all four hormones. It’s just present in different amounts. Girls have higher amounts of female hormones and smaller amounts of testosterone, while boys have higher amounts of testosterone and smaller amounts of oestrogen and progesterone. Girls... testosterone is the reason why you have pubic and armpit hair. From now on, I will be blaming testosterone for my waxing pain ;)

Throughout your menstrual cycle, your hormones fluctuate significantly, which is why you see an increase of pimples around that time of month. This as we know, continues long past the teen years.

In boys, often during puberty there are many surges of testosterone, which is why we see an increase in breakouts primarily during their teen years.

  Hormones are responsible for many things including acne



26% of women in their 30’s battle with breakouts.

When your hormones are balanced, they help your body to thrive. But sometimes hormone levels are too high or too low which can lead to imbalances in both your body and your skin.


Your GP can test your hormone levels in several ways to determine if there is a hormonal imbalance that could be contributing to your acne. Since a blood test is only a snapshot in time, the 24-hour urinary hormone test or multiple saliva tests done in spaced intervals can often provide more helpful information. In certain situations, more than one testing method may be advised.

Although hormonal acne is largely driven internally, most of our users with hormonal acne have had wonderful results with our real-u 3-Step Program as it allows your skin to stay calm and is designed to work with your skin, not against it.

real-u acne skincare 3 step program

It’s a combination of understanding what your skin needs and the right skincare routine that leads to clear, healthy skin from the inside out.