I currently have a pimple on my forehead. I also have a couple fine lines right next to it.

Pimples and wrinkles? Welcome to thirty-three.

And so it goes, just another typical week around here. Stuck between puberty and adulthood, or so it appears that way. It was only a few short months ago that I had my skincare routine down to a science. Then I stopped taking birth control pills over the Summer and now I'm just trying to understand my own body again.


I'll admit that I've been reluctant to write about this, mostly because it's a little embarrassing. But if I'm experiencing these changes then I'm sure a lot of you are (or have) as well.

I started taking the pill when I was eighteen. I had horrible menstrual cycles that were extremely painful, making the week of my period absolute Hell. My skin was fairly normal but when I broke out, I really broke out! We're talking red, cystic bumps. When my doctor recommended I try a low dose birth control pill to help regulate my hormones, I gladly accepted. All the nerves I had about taking a pill every single day quickly faded away as my skin, hair, nails, everything seemed to improve.

I never had issues on ortho tri cyclen lo. I didn't have the same hiccups that plagued my girlfriends. Many of them tried different methods because the side effects of birth control really impacted their bodies in a negative way. It was confusing to me because I didn't have any complaints. It worked well! My cycle became regular, my skin looked amazing, my hair shined, and I lived my life without worry. I felt in control of my body.

Then in June, Nate and I decided that we were ready to start a family and I stopped taking all of my medications including the pill. I was SO nervous. After over a decade of relying on it, I was done. Just like that. I poured over online articles, medical journals, consulted with a doctor, and asked my girlfriends if stopping birth control was easy. Namely, was my body going to freak out? Spontaneously combust?

Before I go on, let me caution you guys against reading too much into somebody else's experience. I read horror stories of women suddenly getting horrible acne, mood swings that bordered on institutionalization, and oily hair that couldn't be tamed. The last part scared me the most. "Damn, I'll have to wash my hair every day?" No thanks. I have enough trouble as it is.

The truth is, everybody is going to react differently when starting or stopping any type of hormonal treatment, just as everybody reacts differently to  certain medications. So before you have a meltdown like I did in June, just relax. Your body may change like mine has, or you may not notice any changes at all.

So right now, a little over six months after stopping the pill and I have:
An oily complexion. The rest of my body is dry as a desert (I suffer from mild eczema and dry patches).
I have intermittent periods where my skin still looks and feels like it did before, but I break out more often especially little bumps along my hairline and jawline. I cannot express how irritating this is to me.
My hair gets oily faster, especially in the front. I now wash my hair three times per week, in comparison to twice before.
My period is regular and actually fairly easy. Not too much pain either, thank God.
The one thing that has really been a struggle is my mood. I go up and down so much and quickly too. I'm still unsure what to do in order to create balance, but I'm hoping that my body will regulate  itself. 

The products shown above are what I've been using. I find that I still enjoy most of them, but I have a less heavy hand with the creams. I also have been exfoliating more, about three times per week. I am super diligent about cleansing too. The L'oreal pure clay cleanser has been amazing at removing impurities, so I plan on buying another soon.

This post isn't necessarily me giving you advice because I'm sorting through it all myself. I just wanted to share that if you're going through hormonal changes too, that I totally understand how frustrating it can be! I would love to hear from you guys on this topic! Any tips, special products that I should know about? Our bodies are resilient, and we will adjust.


  1. I have been off the pill for years and now my doctor put me on it again, but not on my go-to one because I'm nursing. So I have to go through all the hormones again! Yuck! I can commiserate!

  2. I've never experienced this but it sounds awful.


  3. I think I'm on the opposite end of the spectrum from you - any time I'm on hormonal BC I am miserable from all kinds of side effects. Although with one form my skin was better than ever but it had other problems I won't list, so it wasn't worth the good skin! And since then, I've found some products that helped my skin so hopefully in time and through trial and error (which sucks and is expensive! ugh!) you'll find a new normal routine!
    Gina || On the Daily Express

  4. When I started taking the pill four years ago I wished it would clear up my acne, but my oily skin and hair never wavered. I also didn't have any other side effects from the pill other than a nice light regular period with no cramps. I wish I had better advice for dealing the acne, but I have been using face oils in addition to my benzoyl peroxide, I feel like whiteheads, while still a regular occurrence, at least seem to have a shorter life span.

  5. It's crazy how much our hormones effect us! I never really took the pill, but after after my second baby I have struggled majorly with my mood and my hair is not the same as it used to be. Hope you find a new routine soon that works for you!

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