How to Build Confidence in Your Skin with PCOS

How to Build Confidence in Your Skin with PCOS

You know that feeling when you look in the mirror and just don't feel like yourself? Those little bumps, red spots, and uneven tone that seem to glare back no matter how much makeup you pile on. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) can really do a number on your skin and your self-confidence. But you don't have to let it! In this post, we'll chat about some simple tips and tricks to get your skin glowing and your confidence rising. 

From over-the-counter products to lifestyle changes, you'll learn easy, realistic ways to manage those pesky PCOS skin issues. Get ready to say bye-bye to breakouts and hello to happy skin! Whether you're hoping to improve texture, tackle hormonal acne, or reduce redness, we've got you covered. Let's talk about how to build confidence in your skin with PCOS!

Understanding PCOS and How It Affects Your Skin

PCOS or polycystic ovary syndrome is a hormonal disorder where your ovaries produce higher amounts of male hormones called androgens. This imbalance causes problems with ovulation and can lead to cysts forming in the ovaries. For many women with PCOS, the excess androgens also stimulate the oil glands in the skin and cause acne breakouts or make existing acne worse.

Oily Skin and Acne

The excess oil production caused by PCOS often results in an oily skin type and frequent acne breakouts. The acne tends to appear on the face, chest, upper back and shoulders. To help reduce oiliness and improve acne, use a gentle cleanser twice a day, a facial moisturizer designed to reduce ingrown hairs, and topical treatments containing benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid or alpha hydroxy acid. You may also want to talk to your dermatologist about prescription medication if your acne is severe.

Unwanted Hair Growth

The extra androgens in PCOS can also stimulate excess hair growth on the face and body, known as hirsutism. The hair tends to appear on the upper lip, chin, sideburns, chest and abdomen. Options for hair removal include laser therapy, electrolysis, waxing and depilatory creams. These methods provide temporary relief but you need ongoing treatments to prevent regrowth.

One of the best solutions to PCOS facial hair is a hair-reduction fade oil. We love this solution because it not only reduces facial hair growth, but it reduces hyperpigmentation and ingrown hairs. 

Getting the right diagnosis and treatment plan can help you better understand and manage PCOS symptoms. By using targeted skincare, hair removal options and medical interventions advised by your doctor, you can achieve clear, hair-free skin and build confidence from the inside out. While PCOS may be a chronic condition, the key is learning how to nurture yourself and maintain a self-care routine that helps you feel comfortable and confident in your own skin.

woman applying her skincare

Creating a Skincare Routine for PCOS-Prone Skin

Cleanse Gently

Wash your face twice a day with a gentle cleanser to remove excess oil and dirt without stripping your skin. Look for a formula that is fragrance-free and gentle on your skin. Massage it onto damp skin and rinse well with lukewarm water.

Exfoliate Regularly

Use an exfoliant 2-3 times a week to unclog pores and remove dead skin cells. These exfoliants are very effective for PCOS skin but can be drying, so start slowly and build up frequency based on your skin's tolerance.

Moisturize Daily

Apply a non-comedogenic moisturizer daily to keep skin hydrated without clogging pores. For daytime, use an oil-free moisturizer with SPF 30 or higher for sun protection. At night, use a richer cream to deeply hydrate your skin as you sleep. 

Treat Acne

If you experience breakouts, use a targeted treatment with salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide to clear pores and reduce inflammation. You can also ask your dermatologist about prescription topical treatments or oral medications if over-the-counter products are not helping.

If you have any hyperpigmentation that lingers from your acne, you may want to try a fade oil to lighten the spots. 

With the right regimen tailored to your skin's needs, you can gain confidence by keeping PCOS-related skin issues at bay and your complexion clear and glowing. Staying consistent with a skincare routine, drinking plenty of water, managing stress levels and maintaining a healthy diet and exercise plan will all contribute to radiant skin and greater self-esteem. Focus on loving yourself and being kind to your body.

Managing Hirsutism and Acne With Lifestyle Changes


Adopting an anti-inflammatory diet can help improve PCOS skin symptoms. Focus on whole foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins. Limit processed foods, sugar, and red meat, which can spike insulin and worsen acne and excess hair growth. Some key things to do:

Eat more omega-3 fatty acids found in fatty fish, chia seeds, and flax seeds. They help reduce inflammation in the body. Berries, leafy greens, and turmeric or curcumin supplements also have anti-inflammatory effects.

Cut back on dairy and high glycemic index foods that cause spikes in blood sugar. Choose low GI alternatives like steel-cut oats instead of sugary cereals.

Stay hydrated and drink plenty of water. It flushes out toxins and keeps your skin moisturized.

Reduce Stress

Chronic stress can exacerbate PCOS symptoms. Engage in self-care practices like yoga, meditation, journaling or deep breathing to lower your cortisol levels. Limit stressful activities when possible and take occasional breaks to recharge. Getting enough sleep every night is also essential for stress management and hormonal balance.

Use Topical Treatments

For hirsutism, you can try laser hair removal, electrolysis or hair reduction fade oil to slow hair growth. To clear acne, use over-the-counter topical treatments containing benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid or alpha hydroxy acid (AHA). See a dermatologist for prescription medication like topical retinoids or antibiotics if your acne is severe.

While PCOS symptoms can significantly impact self-confidence, making sustainable lifestyle changes and learning self-acceptance can help you feel more at ease in your own skin. Focus on the qualities you like about yourself and keep working on the areas within your control. Over time, you will build resilience and a stronger sense of self-worth.

skincare products flatlay

Finding the Right Makeup for Your Skin

Finding makeup that complements your PCOS skin can be challenging, but it’s not impossible. The key is focusing on products formulated for sensitive skin that won’t clog pores or cause breakouts.

Look for “non-comedogenic” and “oil-free”

When shopping for foundation, concealer, and other face products, look for labels that say “non-comedogenic,” “won’t clog pores,” or “oil-free.” These are less likely to exacerbate acne or skin inflammation. Mineral-based makeup can also be a great option as it’s natural and breathable.

Choose light to medium coverage

Full coverage foundations and concealers can feel heavy on the skin and may irritate pores. Look for light to medium coverage options that you can sheer out or build up. Tinted moisturizers and BB creams are also great for keeping skin looking natural.

Set makeup with powder

Using a light layer of loose or pressed powder, especially in the T-zone where skin tends to be oilier, can help set your makeup and prevent excess shine without clogging pores. Look for powders labeled “oil-absorbing” or for oily skin.

Accentuate your features

Once you have your base down, you can define your features with eyebrow pencils or tinted brow gels, natural-looking mascaras, and lipsticks or glosses. Creamy, moisturizing lip colors tend to be most comfortable for sensitive skin.

With some trial and error, you can find makeup products your PCOS skin will love. Focus on keeping your routine simple, using high-quality sensitive skin products, and embracing what makes you uniquely you. Your beauty will shine through!

Building Confidence and Self-Love With PCOS Skin

Sometimes it can feel like your skin is against you when you live with PCOS. The excess hair growth, acne, and other skin changes that come with the condition can take a major toll on your self-esteem and confidence. But you shouldn’t let your PCOS skin define you or stand in the way of loving yourself.

Focus on the Positive

Rather than zeroing in on the parts of your skin you don’t like, pay more attention to the features you do appreciate. Spend a few minutes each day looking in the mirror and giving yourself genuine compliments. Compliment your eyes, smile, hair, or other attributes you love. This can help shift your mindset to a more positive one.

Practice Self-Care

Engage in regular self-care for your skin and body. Use a gentle cleanser and moisturizer daily, exfoliate weekly, and apply targeted products for any skin concerns. Getting regular exercise, limiting stress, eating healthy, and staying hydrated will also benefit your skin and mood. When you care for yourself, you'll feel better in your own skin.

Connect With Your Community

If you're feeling down about your PCOS skin, connect with others who can relate. Join an online support group to share experiences and advice. Talk to a close friend or family member who is understanding and supportive. Speaking with others who have been there can help you feel less alone and boost your confidence.

While PCOS may present some skin challenges, you have the power to build your confidence from within. Focus on self-care, embrace the qualities you love about yourself, and connect with your community. Your worth isn’t defined by any one part of you, especially not your skin. You are deserving of love and belonging, PCOS skin and all.

You deserve to feel beautiful and confident in your skin, even with PCOS. Don't let bumps, acne, or excess hair get you down. Take control of your skincare routine, be patient with treatments, and focus on self-love. Your worth isn't defined by your complexion.

Surround yourself with supportive people who build you up. Most importantly, know that you are so much more than your skin. You are creative, kind, strong, and amazing, with endless potential. Your beauty shines from within, so walk with your head held high. You've got this!

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