One of the benefits of growing older is supposed to be leaving the greasy skin and pimples of your youth behind, but this isn’t the case for everyone. If your face is suddenly turning into an oil slick, have no fear. A few simple skin-care tips and a trip to your doctor can put you back on the road toward the smooth, supple skin you deserve.
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Just as the shifting hormones of puberty causes oily skin in teenagers, changing hormones may be responsible for a greasy face as an adult. If you’re a woman, you may be beginning menopause. During this time, estrogen and progesterone levels drop, and your existing levels of testosterone take over and produce more oil. Another potential cause is a hormone disorder known as acromegaly. This disorder is caused by benign tumors and primarily affects middle-aged people, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Besides oily skin, you may notice other symptoms, such as enlarged hands and feet, joint pain and enlarged facial features.
While menopause itself is a natural process that doesn’t require any medical treatment, your doctor may opt to start you on hormone replacement therapy, or HRT, to boost your levels of both estrogen and progesterone. This treatment helps ease a number of menopause symptoms, such as hot flashes and mood swings. If your doctor diagnoses you with acromegaly, you may need surgery to remove pituitary tumors. He may also suggest radiation treatment to shrink your tumors or prescribe medications that reduce your hormone levels.
Caring for Oily Skin
Using the proper products can help curb your oily skin. In some people, proper skin care can be enough to clear up the problem, but these steps can also help as you’re waiting for other medical treatments to work. Buy a foaming or gel cleanser and use it to wash your face twice a day, as well as after exercising. After washing, run cotton balls soaked in an alcohol-free toner across the oily zones of your face and finish by applying a light, oil-free moisturizer. If you have long hair, keep it away from your face. The natural oils and any products in your hair can rub against your face and worsen your greasiness.
If you like to wear makeup, you may need to choose different products in order to suit your changing skin needs. "Marie Claire" magazine recommends choosing mineral makeup when you have oily skin. This makeup usually comes in a powder form, so it blots away oil to give you a smooth finish. If you have pimples you want to cover, look for concealer that includes salicylic acid, which will zap pimples while covering them.