For most women, the ageing of the skin starts to happen very quickly with the onset of menopause. It is usually during this time, which typically lasts 5 years, when accelerated ageing occurs due to a change in hormones. As a result, skin becomes dry, itchy and less supple causing fine lines and deep wrinkles to form more easily.
Starting in your late 40’s or early 50’s the menopause initiates a number of biochemical changes that make the skin less able to retain water and produce collagen. The changes can also cause other problems such as adult acne and age or liver spots, also known as pigmentation.
The specific changes that contribute to this include:
- The stratum corneum, the outermost skin layer, reduces its water holding qualities and becomes dry leading to deep wrinkle formation.
- Collagen levels decrease causing a loss in skin thickness. Remaining cells expand to fill the space causing a transparency and fragility that can lead to wrinkles and micro-wounds.
- Hormonal changes significantly affect the skin’s elasticity leading to deep, permanent wrinkles.
- Melanin or Lipofuscin synthesis often caused by exposure to UV light causes dark age or liver spots.
- Hormonal changes can lead to an increase in spots and blemishes, often known as acne.