How Menopause Impacts Skin Color? Here’s What to Expect

Last updated 04.08.2024 | by Sabrina Johnson | 6 Minutes Read

This article has been reviewed and fact checked by Dr. Karen Pike, a senior physician administrator and board-certified emergency room doctor actively working in northern California. Read more at our medical disclaimer page.


Menopause brings many physical changes, including an alteration in skin texture and color. A survey showed that around 46% of women underwent skin changes during menopause. A lady at a clinic once mentioned how she eventually began losing the plumpness and fullness of her skin, which gradually turned loose and saggy as she transitioned into menopause. Another woman mentioned how she ultimately developed dark spots on her skin as she turned 40.

Have you also experienced similar changes to your skin during and after menopause? Do you want to know how menopause affects your skin color and appearance? Then, this article is a must-read. I have covered aspects like the impact of menopause on your skin color and texture and even mentioned vital skincare tips. Read on to learn more.

Why Is Your Skin Affected in Menopause?

Low estrogen levels are responsible for all the skin-related issues you experience in menopause. Estrogen isn’t only a reproductive hormone; it also has other functions. One of them is to nourish your skin and make it appear plump, elastic, full, and firm by stimulating the production of elastin and collagen.

When estrogen levels decrease during and after menopause, you will notice several changes in your skin. It will lose its elasticity and appear saggy. Your skin may even appear darker or have black spots. Then, there is also the problem of an acne outbreak. In the next section, we will discuss the changes in skin color and other skin issues you may face in menopause.

Why Do You Experience Changes in Skin Color and Dark Spots In Menopause?

Many women experience melasma when transitioning into menopause or are already in menopause. It is a condition in which people experience pigmentation patches on their faces. The patches are mainly visible on the nose, chin, upper lip and forehead. Hormonal changes are responsible for the change in skin color. If you have increased exposure to the sun, you will be more susceptible to dark spots or patches on your skin.

How to Manage Skin Pigmentation and Changes in Color in Menopause?

Many women resort to OTC creams to get rid of dark spots. However, many medical experts opine that these creams aren’t enough to manage dark spots on your skin. You could speak to your dermatologist about these dark marks on your skin and even opt for prescription creams upon your doctor’s advice. A chemical peel is another option that needs to be performed at the healthcare provider’s office. Ensure you have a certified or trained dermatologist or doctor to carry out this process. If the conventional treatment methods fail, you have laser treatment to resort to, not without consulting a doctor, though.

Besides the medical treatment, some women even opt for a few home remedies to cope with melasma. These include:

  • Aloe vera gel since it has anti-inflammatory properties. It helps to rehydrate and nourish your skin. It even safeguards your skin from harmful UV rays.
  • Lemon juice is another remedy many use. It works as a bleaching agent, helping to remove the dark spots. You should apply it to your dark spots for approximately twenty minutes and wash it off using lukewarm water. Here’s a word of caution, though. Lemon juice is acidic, and overapplication could have harsh effects on your skin, causing more damage.
  • Turmeric has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, protecting the skin from UV rays.

    Increased melanin production results in dark spots. Turmeric helps prevent melanin production. A turmeric powder and milk or honey paste will help.
  • Studies have shown the effectiveness of tomato paste in managing skin damage, both long-term and short-term. A tomato paste-olive oil mask applied twice weekly helps the dark spots fade away.
  • Milk has lactic acid, which helps lighten skin coloration. Dip a cotton ball in milk. Apply it over your dark skin patches at least twice daily. Repeat this for a few days, and you will get effective results.
  • An animal study showed the effectiveness of black tea water in lightening dark spots. You must apply it two times a day for at least six days a week. You will get the desired results after four weeks.
  • Red onion extract is beneficial in lightening scars and is one of the main ingredients in many scar-lightening creams.

Home remedies may serve as an alternative or simultaneous treatment. However, if your patches get deeper or worse with every passing time, seeking a doctor’s advice is of utmost importance.

FAQs

What are the other common skin problems women may face during menopause?

Besides skin pigmentation issues, women may experience several other issues during and after menopause.

Many complain of their skin losing plumpness and becoming saggy. This is due to decreased collagen production, an aftereffect of low estrogen levels.

Less collagen production causes the skin to lose its youthfulness and tightness. Reduced estrogen levels also cause the skin to lose its water-retaining ability, making it dry and itchy.

The fluctuating hormone levels even trigger acne outbreaks in some women, if not all. There is a reason behind this. When estrogen levels fall, the impact of androgen, perceived as a male hormone, increases. Androgen also raises sebum production, which in turn results in an increased incidence of acne and pimples.

How do you prevent skin changes during menopause?

Paying attention to skincare and following a healthy diet can help overcome skin problems more in menopause.

Moisturize your skin regularly. When choosing moisturizers, opt for those containing hyaluronic acid, which helps retain water and maintain skin suppleness.
If you have dry and itchy skin, avoid hot showers. They may take the natural oils of your skin, making it parched.

Always use sunscreen before going out in the sun. It protects your skin from harmful rays, lessening the chances of skin pigmentation and tanning. When selecting your sunscreen, opt for one having a minimum of 30 SPF, as that may block the UVB rays of the sun by around 97%.

Consume fruits and vegetables in plenty, and have Vitamin C-rich foods to nourish your skin. Citrus fruits like grapes, limes, lemons, and oranges are known for their high Vitamin C content. Drink sufficient water as it helps to keep your skin elastic and full, lessening wrinkles.

Can HRT help with menopausal skin problems?

Hormone replacement therapy has helped with several menopausal symptoms. Its role in managing skin issues isn’t an exception. It increases your skin’s collagen production, making it more full and elastic. It is even helpful in lessening dark spots. Seek your doctor’s advice to determine the kind of HRT that may suit you the best and help relieve maximum symptoms.

Conclusion

Skin issues, in general, and loss of skin color, in particular, aren’t that common in menopause. However, if you aren’t careful about your skin, the symptoms may aggravate, worsening things. If your skin gets thinner, drier, or darker even after trying home remedies or maintaining a proper lifestyle, seek your healthcare provider’s consultation immediately.

Author

  • Sabrina Johnson

    Meet Sabrina Johnson, a compassionate author and a seasoned expert in Obstetrics and Gynecology. She is a driving force behind Simply Menopause, where her extensive medical knowledge and empathetic nature come together to empower women in their menopausal journey. Sabrina offers culturally sensitive guidance and support through her approachable writing, making her a trusted friend on the path to menopause wellness.