My Current Skincare Routine For Hormonal Acne

Categories Beauty

When I first realized I had hormonal acne, I did anything and everything under the sun to try to get it in order. Birth control. Diet changes. This skincare routine. That skincare routine. Going clean. No sugar, No dairy. No gluten. If you told me it would work, I was desperate to try it. 

Cut to today where I see girls on the internet every day struggling so much because often acne makes us feel unloveable. 

My journey was not unique and it happens to so many of us. Our underlying hormonal issues are swept under the rug with birth control only to cause big issues later. And how we fix it feels like a million miles away. But it isn’t because I did it and that means you can figure out how to do it too.

I want to be clear before we dive into today’s post – that this is MY hormonal acne skincare routine. Take what works for you and leave the rest. Understanding ingredients in skincare, understanding YOUR personal skincare type, and understanding your body’s needs will be the ultimate solution to how you do this long term. But for now, welcome to my hormonal acne skincare routine. 

A note before we jump in: this sh*t starts in the gut. It’s why so many who do the medical treatments have issues later because the anti-biotics mess with your gut health. There is no effective skincare routine without a diet that supports your body’s needs and a good probiotic. I recommend Seed or Ritual (code WHATSAVVYSAID on either saves you $$$).

5 Products That Helped With My Acne Prone Skin #whatsavvysaid #acneproneskin #facemask #acne #wellnessblogger #joshrosebrook #tatahaper #maylindstrom #beautycounter #nontoxicskincare


Morning Routine

Tata Harper Clarifying Cleanser

It’s been 5 years and I have yet to find another cleanser I love as much as this one. It has AHAs and BHAs in it to help with gentle exfoliation. If you’re super sensitive this is a great place to start without overwhelming your skin. I have normal to dry skin so despite the acne part of things I need to keep my skin hydrated to keep it happy.

This is the only cleanser I’ve found that doesn’t feel like it leaves a residue on my skin while also gently cooling & cleansing. There’s also a subtle peppermint aspect to it that calms things down while it works. I do one pump per wash and the bottle lasts me a good 3 months. Nothing else compares – I promise, I’ve tried.

Paula’s Choice 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

I will never live without this product. If you put me on a desert island, I would need this otherwise I would be a hot mess. It’s the only product I have set up for a subscription because I refuse to not have a backup at all times. I use this morning and night as my second step. This might be too much for some others but it works for me. This is the step in my routine that gets rid of the tiny bumps. The big cystic acne is systemic – aka diet, hormones, and lifestyle.

Drunk Elephant Eye Cream

If you haven’t stumbled upon Caroline Hiron’s Skincare Bible yet, now would be a good time for me to introduce you. It’s how you learn where things go in your routine, ingredients, and everything else you could possibly need to know. I have one major goal when it comes to eye cream and then one slightly less important. Hydration is top of the list followed closely by anti-aging. 

I mean we’re still doing Botox but the eye cream needs to keep me from developing my winter dragon scales. I’ve tried quite a few and I’ve come back to this one time and time again.

Tatcha Vitamin C Serum

9/10 if something isn’t working in my routine, it is probably because of my Vitamin C choice. Meaning: I’ve introduced a new product and suddenly I find my skincare is pilling (rolling into little balls as you layer product). Thankfully, the Tatcha works a treat with all my other products and also keeps my skin glowing.

I’ve done an entire blog post on why Vitamin C is essential: especially after 30 were our collagen product declines rapidly. But this is the one area if you need to adjust for budget purposes or personal reasons, I’m less stuck on one product.

Allies Of Skin Peptides & Antioxidants Firming Daily Treatment

I really didn’t want to like this product. I bought it originally out of desperation and to my chagrin, people started complimenting my skin. Now I can’t live without it. It’s worth noting, partly because I’m extra and also because there’s a game to play when you’re dealing with potent ingredients, I regularly rotate moisturizers. *but we can talk about the most stripped down version of things in a moment*

In general, Allies Of Skin has gained my respect due to their transparency over the last few years. But their products perform amazingly and I couldn’t be more obsessed. I DO have a discount code (for you but also because I love knowing I can always save 20% on my moisturizer). Code SAVANNAH will save you $$$ on the Allies Of Skin website. Ps. If you’re reading this in real time, the buy one get one free sale is still happening so stock up!

2nd Moisturizer: Allies Of Skin Molecular Barrier Recovery Cream Balm

I am not married to this particular product but I do find that it’s help to have a moisturizer in your routine that has no active ingredients. Aka it’s only goal is to hydrate the sh*t out of your skin. I will likely replace this with the Dieux moisturizer when I run out. But for now, it’s doing wonders for keeping my skin hydrated in the dryer months.

Paula’s Choice SPF

I’ve had quite the journey with SPFs over the years. And while I applaud the girlies who want the glowing skin, I no longer mix my spf with anything because I don’t want to dilute the effects or protection. This is one of the few spfs I’ve round that is thin enough that I can take it from my face to my chest without it gathering in my neck creases once I add powder and/or makeup. More than anything, I’m trying to prevent myself from that aged neck & chest look. I love this spf for making it easy and also being factor 50.

5 Products That Helped With My Acne Prone Skin #whatsavvysaid #acneproneskin #facemask #acne #wellnessblogger #joshrosebrook #tatahaper #maylindstrom #beautycounter #nontoxicskincare
5 Products That Helped With My Acne Prone Skin #whatsavvysaid #acneproneskin #facemask #acne #wellnessblogger #joshrosebrook #tatahaper #maylindstrom #beautycounter #nontoxicskincare

Nighttime Routine

First Cleanse: One Love Organics Vitamin B Cleansing Oil

I don’t have a favorite here at the moment but I do have quite a few I find irritate my eyes. This is probably the only one I come back to on repeat because it breaks down my makeup so well and doesn’t bother my eyes in the slightest. I don’t use makeup wipes unless it’s an emergency. But I do highly recommend Clean Towels with this. I use one per day as an alternative to washcloths. Your skin will thank you. You will thank you. And it’s one less thing to wash. Plus, I love knowing that I can pack them easily when I travel.

Second Cleanser: Tata Harper Clarifying Cleanser

Toner: TBD By The Moisturizer Of The Evening

This is the part of my routine that varies depending on the active ingredients. It can also be layered if needed. If I’m using retinol, I’m likely to skip this step completely. And if I find I need some extra hydration, I trust Indie Lee CoQ10 Spray or Allies of Skin Probiotic Mist to sort me out. If we’re not doing something with retinol, you’ll probably see Paula’s Choice BHA here again. 

My goal is to keep my skin happy, hydrated, and not peeling. So I’m happy to take it day by day as needed.

Serums: TBD

I am fortunate enough to be sent skincare to trial occasionally. But I’m currently not using anything consistently enough to find it worth noting. However, if that does change, I’ll be sure to update you.

Moisturizer: Allies Of Skin Retinal & Peptides Repair Night Cream

(or the other two previously mentioned AOS products)

I could and probably will choose to move to a more active retinol in the new year. Which would leave me with the Peptides moisturizer and a general non-active option. However, I’ve enjoyed using this for the last few months as a way to consistently build up my skin’s tolerance for ingredients. I will likely look at Skinceuticals and/or A313 to start.


These play a special role in my routine. And isn’t a regular enough occurrence to be a part of my skincare regimen. However, when there are certain problems I need to treat quickly or require a stronger approach, I love supplementing masks as needed.

Josh Rosebrook Advanced Hydrating Mask – A staple for my winter, travel, and dermaplaning skincare needs. My skin feels so incredibly calm, smoothe and hydrated after using it. A forever love for me.

May Lindstrom The Problem Solver – It’s beyond rare that I get a cystic situation. I recently tried to scrub my skin a bit more while cleansing and got the worst spots of the last 5 years – aka little mountains that were like 5 pimples in one. If I need to draw out the deep stuff, I want nothing other than The Problem Solver. Alternatively, you can go for a cheaper clay mask but I find that can be overly drying for me. This is an investment but I use it so sparingly it’s worth it. 

Ice Roller & Gua Sha:

I find that nothing works better for me after a night out, a weekend of travel, or when I’m feeling puffy than a gua sha and ice roller moment. If I need the extra moisture, I might throw in a hydrating sheet mask but a basic Rosehip Oil works here to let everything glide on your skin. I don’t have enough gua sha knowledge to be able to recommend anything fancy. But I’ve tried enough ice rollers to tell you The Skinny Confidential one will change your life. I love it so much I need a back up for travel. 

The basics

Before we leave our time together, I want to say I know this can feel overwhelming and maybe you don’t know where to start. Or you do and you don’t know if you can afford to buy all the things I’ve just listed. To which I would suggest: pay attention to ingredients and learn your skin type.

If I can only have 3 products in my routine, it’s going to be my Tata Harper Cleanser, Paula’s Choice BHA and the Allies Of Skin Peptide Treatment. I will find a cheap cleansing balm and spf. Versed & Cocokind make great options you can pick up at Target and maybe Walmart. And I would go from there. 

Remember, your inner routine is just as important as your outer routine. I’ve done an in depth post on all the other bits you can find here. But you’re always welcome to DM me with any questions. Wherever you’re at in your hormonal journey, just remember it does get better. It took me 3 years to figure this out after birth control. And if you can afford to invest in a good esthetician it can also help. 

I love you. I’m so glad you’re here. And I hope you’ll join me again in the future for more skincare chats, routines, and life fun. Make sure you’re subscribed to the newsletter so you don’t miss a beat. Until next time. Xoxo, Savvy

Shop The Post

Best vitamins for hormonal acne featured by top Atlanta lifestyle blogger, What Savvy Said
0 0 votes
Article Rating
  • I do a few sponsored posts but they are limited to maintain the authenticity of © What Savvy Said. Some links in my posts may be affiliate links. This means I receive a small compensation for purchases made through those links. The presence of affiliate links and potential commission compensation are marked with an (*).

  • Subscribe
    Notify of

    Inline Feedbacks
    View all comments