Beauty Clinic: I'm breaking out in middle age

Q. I am 55 and have begun to have breakouts on my face. I assume this is due to hormones as I have not yet gone through the menopause. I regularly cleanse and tone a.m./p.m., use Elemis day and night creams and also have a salon facial every six weeks. I eat a healthy diet, drink lots of water and take regular exercise. Please could you advise me on any products I could use alongside my current regime? A. As you suspect, the most likely culprit behind your breakouts is hormonal imbalance, which is especially common in peri-menopause – the stage leading up to your last period.   As the female reproductive hormone oestrogen declines, so the ratio swings towards testosterone (the so-called male hormone which women have too). Testosterone tends to cause the sebaceous glands to exude more sebum than normal, thus the breakouts.

Here are pharmacist Shabir Daya’s recommendations and comments:

Clear Skin ComplexViridian Nutrition Clear Skin Complex. This supplement contains burdock root, which has been revered for its blood cleansing properties as well as for its antimicrobial properties helping to reduce the numbers of acne causing bacteria that live on the skin’s surface.  Included in the formulation are probiotics, which work in the intestines to break down food more efficiently and to detox the gut of wastes and toxins, zinc to help heal skin quickly and gotu kola to encourage circulation helping to take inflammatory compounds back to the liver quickly for their ultimate destruction. From Victoria Health.

Is Clinical RegimeiS Clinical Acne Regimen Kit. This contains Active Serum, a hero product that helps to calm underlying inflammation in skin and also to prevent the acne-causing bacteria on the skin’s surface from thriving. It does cause a very slight tingling as the active ingredients reach the dermal layer of the skin where nerves are located. The kit also contains a cleanser for all skin types and a hydrating serum to restore moisture – that is very different from restoring oils, which you have plenty of. For the moment, it would be sensible just to use this simple regimen and see how it suits you before deciding if you really need to use anything else.

Clear Skin Complex by Viridian Nutrition/£22.05 for 60 capsules (30 days supply) at - buy here

iS Clinical Acne Regimen Kit/£99 (usual price of products £132) at - buy here