Cyclical skincare is the regular face skin care based on the menstrual cycle. It takes cue from the assumption that hormonal shifts – in particular of oestrogens, progesterone and testosterone – affect several functions of the body, ranging from mood to sleep, from weight to skin health.

Such a nexus is manifest and known to all women, but finally even cosmetics companies are beginning to consider the link between menstrual cycle and skin, offering Cyclical Skincare, the routine treatment of face skin with tailored products, based on the menstrual cycle.

Psychotherapist and skin expert Charlotte Ferguson, founder of one of the most renowned brands of the trade, Disciple, interviewed by Refinery29, drafted a mini-guide on texture and on the most suitable ingredients to be used during the several stages of a woman’s period.

In the menstrual cycle days, the skin tends to be more sensitive than usual, hence it is best to use simple creams, with few ingredients and not perfumed. If the skin becomes dry and irritated, the solution is to replace detergents and anti-imperfections creams with richer, more moisturising and soothing textures. Finally, retinol-based treatments are the ideal product when it comes to pimples and spots.

As soon as the menstruation cycle is over, the skin is at its best, it begins to rebalance, there is more energy, so that’s when to stock up on retinoids, vitamin A and vitamin C, to make the skin radiant and to protect it from external agents. But it’s also a time to opt for more specific and targeted treatments, such as face masks and compresses. Following a good skincare routine during this stage will benefit the skin in tougher times.

On the ovulation day, nature gives women 24 hours to feel at the very top, an entire day during which the skin truly shines. A number of studies have revealed that this is the period when women wear sexier dresses and use more make up. So feel free to use bright-coloured lipstick and flashy makeup.

The final phase of the period, as the menstrual flow arrives, is the worst one, owing to the collapse of oestrogen levels and the increase in testosterone and progesterone. That’s the advent of the premenstrual syndrome, when women feel bloated and produce more sebum (which, in turn, causes pimples and spots) and suffer from water retention. Since the skin tends to become fatter and skin pores are inflamed, this is the time to use exfoliators and cleansing products with ingredients such as salicylic acid and alpha hydroxy acid.


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