This is part one of a two-part series written exclusively for Unfading Beauty by Aimee Blakemore of Forme Laboratories.
Aimee was responsible for the launch of the Stratum C Menopause Skin Care range in 2013 and has extensive experience of brand awareness and development. Building on her passion for high quality beauty and skin care, her role within Forme Laboratories involves product development, brand management and market research.
Many women dread this term, the way it sounds so medical and definitive. But fear not, Menopause doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom. A cultural shift has begun to happen in recent years where menopause has been brought to the forefront of national health discussions and, as a society, we are opening up to the idea that menopause should no longer be dealt with behind closed doors.
Even more so now than ever, are we seeing more menopause brands emerge that each claim to promote health and relieve menopause symptoms, such as Promensil, Menopace, Wild Yam cream (with phytoestrogens), A.Vogel products and Stratum C Menopause Skin Care, just to name a few. Affecting women everywhere are those irritating symptoms, the very intrusive signs that menopause is inevitably on its way.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS AND WHAT ARE YOU LIKELY TO EXPECT?
Most women begin to experience symptoms of menopause around the average age of 52, however, this can occur earlier or later, and affects different women in different ways. It seems that there is an average of 5 years where these symptoms are more prominent and can affect our daily lives, though some women continue to suffer for a number of years longer, whilst some may not feel any symptoms at all.
The following symptoms are the most common that you might experience:
- Hot flushes
- Night sweats (causing further lack of sleep and fatigue)
- Mood swings (thought to be caused by a hormonal imbalance)
- Vaginal dryness
- Accelerated ageing due to loss of collagen and elastin
- Dry itchy skin, sometimes in the form of Rosacea
- Your hair can become dry and brittle (due to lack of proteins produced by the body)
- Dry Eyes (due to body being less able to retain moisture)
For those of you reading this that may be thinking ‘Oh great, I have all this to look forward to’ – the remedies, some of which are mentioned above, such as herbal supplements and collagen boosting creams, are widely available and then there are several useful changes that you can make from the comfort of your own home.
Most of these hints and tips will benefit women at any age, to ensure that you are not only living life to the fullest and healthiest, but also preparing yourself for when menopause strikes so that it does not come as such a shock when it does show up in years to come.
ARTICLE REFERENCES & MORE READING
- Wild Yam – Alternative medicine
- Hormonal Havoc – American Spa
- Coping with the Menopause – NHS Advice
- Menopause and HRT – Patient.co.uk
Aimee’s right, since starting this blog, I’ve seen a rise in (mostly new), brands offering a range of products specifically targeted to menopausal skin concerns.
‘Range’ is the operative word here as no two women will experience the same menopause. Individual symptoms and skincare needs will vary, so the products need to as well. You might want a moisturiser for dry skin or serum to hydrate oily skin; maybe a soothing toner to calm inflamed cheeks, as with most skincare products, it’s trial and error.
The thing is, these products are expensive. The menopausal skincare market isn’t (yet) competitive enough to bring the prices down. We’re paying a premium for research and development, but I’d rather be paying for that, rather than the big named skincare brands’ marketing and advertising budget.
KNOW YOUR TRIGGERS
Be it spicy food, sweating (dressing in layers helps of course), or for me, certain scents and temperature changes. Preparation is key. Learn what sets you off and try to control it as much as you possibly can.
I always leave the house with a small, ice-cold bottle of water in my bag – and one already in there, in case I forget to take one out of the fridge.
My hot flushes can be triggered by someone wearing a strong perfume/aftershave or a heavy smoker walking past. I take small sips of water (because I’m melting!) and try to remove myself from the situation. If I can’t and the flush overtakes me, then I just ‘roll with it’ – which, I’m happy to say, is easier to do as you get older.
I’m a huge fan of the supplement Menopace, although I did have to take a short break a couple of months ago when it appeared to stop working for a while. Although, I’m back on track now and the flushes are not as frequent.
Part two of how to survive the menopause features practical advice, vitamin supplements, essential oils, and ‘wick away’ nightwear – that’s a new one to me!