How Different Types Of Birth Control Affect Your Skin

You know your birth control affects your skin, but which kind, and how, really depends. And the sad truth is, some kinds can even make acne worse!


Studies at the Curology Medical Group in San Diego have come out detailing the differences in the effects of different types of birth controls on your skin. On average, oral contraceptives and vaginal rings improve your skin, while injections, implants, and hormonal intrauterine devices — like the IUD — tend to worsen acne.

The researchers surveyed over 2,000 women about their chosen methods of birth control, asking whether they thought the contraceptive had made their skin better, worse, or no different at all. The good news is that for the most part, most women didn’t see much of a difference, and these numbers come mostly from the reports of women who do. For example, only 36% of the women who used hormonal IUDs reported that their skin got worse.

Where does the difference stem from?

“The presence of triphasic progestin dosage in oral contraceptives had a positive effect on reducing acne, but variation in estrogen dose did not,” MedPage writes.

In non-science talk, this basically just means the difference seems to stem from the different types of hormones that are present in each type of contraceptive. Curology also built a nice lil’ web page explaining the differences in hormones that you’re taking, based on contraceptive method, which you can look at here.

Now you know, and now you can decide on the lesser of various evils!

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