A lot of people often think that as a beauty blogger my skin is always perfect and glowing. Ha! So not the case. I struggle like anyone else with skin issues and insecurities. And one of my biggest struggles a handful of years back was a struggle with perioral dermatitis. It took some research on my own and with the guidance of my naturopathic doctor I was able to figure out how to treat perioral dermatitis at home and naturally. And I am sharing all of it with you!
*As always I am not a doctor, please always consult with your physician before taking on any new regimen that you are unsure of. I’m merely sharing what worked for me after researching, and reading other stories. Everyone is different and every case of perioral dermatitis is different.
*Suzi (Gurl Gone Green) is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.
*Affiliate Disclosure: I do have affiliate links in this blog post. If you purchase something from my link, I will receive a small commission from the sale. This comes at no cost to you, but is paid by the company. I do not take becoming an affiliate with any company lightly. If I am, it’s because I believe in the company and their product.
What is perioral dermatitis?
It looks a lot like a rash on your skin. The condition is most common in women ages 15-45.
In my case, I first started to notice a difference in the skin around my left nose. It spread out a little past the area, ending around my mouth. It was red, dry, itchy, and scabby looking. Eventually it spread to my chin area as well but not as bad. It never was anywhere else on my body. I noted these changes to my skin right when I found out I was pregnant.
So it was January and I thought oh my skin must just be extra dry due to the weather. I exfoliated the skin around my nose and heavily moisturized daily. It got worse! The redness got redder, the flaking got flakier, and there were now raised bumps. It had been six weeks since I first noticed it and realized it wasn’t just some mild dryness caused by the weather…something else was in play.
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What are possible causes of perioral dermatitis?
It can be really hard to pinpoint what causes perioral dermatitis but what I found was this:
- Topical Steroid Creams
- Makeup, Cleansers, Facial Products
- Hormone Factors in Women
- Sodium Laureth Sulfate
- Fluoride in Toothpaste
- Exposure to Harsh Temps.
- Birth Control Pills
I do think for most women it’s not a clear cut road in diagnosing the condition. I think it can be an accumulation of factors that bring it about. Personally, I wasn’t using any topical steroid creams (nor have I ever), I don’t use products with SLS, fluoride isn’t in my toothpaste, and Washington isn’t really known for harsh temps. I was intrigued about the makeup, cleansers, and facial products being a cause, and quickly dove more into researching about it. After all, that was one area I felt could be the culprit.
What I found is heavy creams, lotions and foundations can cause perioral dermatitis. Really, the overuse and changing it up often can be the cause. Well, that definitely was me. As a clean beauty blogger, I’m constantly switching up my skincare routine to try out new products. Over the year prior to when I first noted the perioral dermatitis, it had been at an all time high.
Another cause that a lot of people don’t mention, but I found may be true with my situation is pregnancy. Being pregnant, my hormones were obviously all over the place. Also, gut flora can be out of balance when pregnant. Having too much yeast in the gut is also a common issue among pregnant women, and this can cause a lot of skin issues. Candida is the condition where there is an overgrowth of yeast. It is a fungus. I knew all of these things could be true in my case.
Conventional Treatments for Perioral Dermatitis
If you choose to go the conventional route with treating perioral dermatitis, you are more than likely going to be first given some sort of topical treatment. Whether it be a topical antibiotic or antifungal medication. If this doesn’t improve the condition, oral antibiotics will be prescribed.
***It must be noted that topical corticosteroids should not be used. Although topical corticosteroids may provide a temporary benefit, when they are discontinued, the rash can often flare and worsen***
How I Healed my Perioral Dermatitis At Home and Naturally
From the many stories I had read of others’ struggles with perioral dermatitis, even those who took antibiotics for it ended up taking them a year later for another flare up. I talked with my Naturopath about it, and he agreed it could be the above causes that I mentioned. He also said it’s common for women who are pregnant to have more yeast in their gut.
Can I be honest? There were points where I wanted to just take something and have it go away. I was so close to going to the drugstore and getting some over the counter anti-fungal cream. I remember right before Indie Beauty Expo in early May thinking I would just give in and go the traditional prescription drug route.
After all, I didn’t want to show up to the blogger’s conference focused on beauty and have my skin acting up. BUT, common sense and a strong desire to figure out the natural way is what caused me to keep on until it was completely gone. Plus, being pregnant I didn’t want to put anything crazy on my body. It got better over time too.
Check out my download here where I share what I believe to be the top 5 things I did that helped my perioral dermatitis to heal.
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By the time the Indie Beauty Expo arrived, my perioral dermatitis wasn’t that bad, and with makeup on probably not noticeable to most.
So how long did I have it? It first started at the beginning of January and lasted until the very end of May.
The typical time for it to clear up really depends from person to person from what I have read. Anywhere from months to a year.
I will say I noticed improvements each month. The biggest factor with perioral dermatitis is the time it takes to help heal the area-don’t rush it.
Skin issues can be so annoying to deal with and at times, life altering in their own way. I hope this post can shed some light on natural ways to cope with perioral dermatitis and give hope to those who are suffering from it. Please leave me a comment if you’ve dealt with it, and what you did to help heal it! Also, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.
If you liked this post, check out these posts:
- Best Green Beauty Cleansers
- Best Natural Face Moisturizers (For Your Skin Type)
- Best Exfoliators For Dry Skin