Which Types of Birth Control Are the Worst for Your Skin?

There's nothing worse than acne that seems to flare up out of nowhere. (Grrr!) But according to a new study published in the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology, certain types of hormonal birth control might be to blame. Here's the gist from Women's Health Magazine!

birth control pills

Researchers analyzed self-reported data from 2,147 female acne sufferers (ages 15 to 51), all of whom were taking some form of hormonal birth control. Vaginal rings and the Pill (specifically, combined oral contraceptives) generally improved acne in patients, while injections, subdermal implants and single-hormone IUDs wreaked havoc. The latter group actually ended up causing the worst outbreaks because they include only androgenic progestins (aka "male hormones"), which get balanced out by estrogen in the other BC forms.

women's health magazine is your birth control causing your breakouts
(Photo: Photo Courtesy of Women's Health)

And if you're on the Pill, some brands might be more effective at fighting acne than others, says lead researcher David Lortscher, M.D., board-certified dermatologist and founder of Curology, a customized acne prescription skin-care line. "For pills, the type of progestin ended up having the most impact on acne because of how the hormones interact with testosterone receptors in the body," he says.

Drospirenone (found in Yaz and Yasmin, for example) tended to be the most helpful in keeping acne in check, followed by norgestimate (TriNessa) and desogestrel (Reclipsen). The biggest acne uppers? Levonorgestrel (Levora, Lutera) and norethindrone (Jolivette).


To read the full article from Women's Health, click here!