Dry January for Your Skin

Dry January for Your Skin

New year, new you? If like us you’ve overdone it a little this Christmas, you might be jumping firmly onto the Dry January wagon. Dry Jan is the UK’s monthlong no-alcohol challenge, which helps millions of people get back in control of their health after the heavy festive period.

Taking a break from alcohol, partying, and unhealthy eating is a great way to get your physical and mental health back to its best for the new year ahead. If you’re joining in with Dry Jan this month, good for you!

What does Dry January involve?

For most people, Dry January means giving up alcohol for 31 days, from New Years Day until the end of the month. However, there aren’t any strict rules when it comes to taking on the challenge.

You might choose to quit alcohol, smoking, unhealthy eating or other bad habits to kick start the year. Anything is better than nothing, and whether you’ll be saying no to a drink or skipping parties altogether, Dry January can be a great way to get in control of your habits for the new year.

How can Dry January help?

The results can vary from person to person, depending on how much alcohol you usually consume and how healthy you are. Many people enjoy benefits like better sleep quality, weight loss, and even better skin when they cut out the alcohol and focus on healthy habits.

  1. Improved health overall

Excessive or binge drinking can cause serious health problems like high blood pressure and cholesterol. When you cut out alcohol, you do plenty of good for your body, including improving your overall health and reducing the likelihood of complications in the future.

  • Improved sleep quality

Though alcohol can make falling asleep easier, having a drink can harm the quality of your sleep. Whether you’ve had a little or a lot, alcohol can interfere with your sleep regulation and reduce the amount of REM sleep you get. This means you’re more likely to wake up feeling groggy and unrested even after a full night’s sleep.

As well as improving the quality of your sleep, removing alcohol from your routine can mean more cosy nights relaxing on the sofa. When you skip the nights out and go to bed on time, you’re more likely to get a good night’s rest and wake up feeling energised in the morning.

  • Strengthened immune system

Giving up alcohol for January can give your immune system a much-needed boost, helping you fight off any new year colds that might be going around.

  • Weight loss

If you’re in good shape and usually lead a healthy lifestyle, you shouldn’t expect to lose any more weight throughout your Dry Jan, though you’ll be healthier inside.

However, if you’ve been drinking excessively for some time and you have a little weight to lose, cutting out alcohol for a month can be a great way to shake off a few pounds.

While spirits are mostly low in calories, sugary mixers, wine, and beer are packed with them. If these are your drinks of choice, cutting them out will also mean cutting down calories. Alcohol can cause bloating, too, which means you might find yourself feeling a little slimmer after just a couple of weeks sober.

Of course, if you’re looking to lose serious weight, you’ll need to ensure you’re eating a good diet as well as cutting out alcohol.

  • Save money

Easy! Whether you’re staying home or opting for soft drinks, Dry January is a great way to save a little money in the new year. Non-alcoholic options are always cheaper than their boozy counterparts, while drinks like lime or blackcurrant and soda are sometimes free.

Save the money you’d usually spend in bars or on supermarket booze or find somewhere more productive to spend it. Why not count the amount you’re saving? Putting aside just £50 each weekend throughout Dry January means you’ll have £200 saved by the end of the month. That’s enough to cover a gym membership with plenty to spare.

  • More radiant skin

This is the benefit that’s really enticing to us. Anything for more radiant skin, right? Cutting out alcohol can help improve your skin’s hydration, tone, and elasticity.

What does alcohol do to the skin?

When you drink alcohol of any kind, the drug metabolises into a compound which makes blood vessels relax. This is what causes that tell-tale red flush and puffiness that often comes along after a few drinks – no thank you.

As well as affecting your skin’s tone, alcohol is super-dehydrating. When you drink, you’ll find yourself visiting the toilet more often than usual, which means losing water quickly. When you’re dehydrated your skin suffers, with fine lines and wrinkles appearing more visible too.

Need more? Alcohol also reduces your vitamin A levels. Less of the collagen-producing antioxidant can be a nightmare when it comes to your skin’s appearance. Collagen is one of our skin’s most important proteins, and when it lacks, skin can appear weak and dull.

Finally, sugar. If your drinks of choice include fruity cocktails and sweet white wine, you’re sure to be consuming an excess of sugar every time you indulge. It’s no secret that sugar is bad for our health, but did you know that the sweet stuff can also lead to breakouts?

Can Dry January make a difference to the skin?

Yes! Your skin takes around 28 days to renew itself. That’s just less than the 31 days of Dry January, which means taking the pledge will give your skin enough time to reap the benefits.

Taking a month off from alcohol allows you to experience your skin at its best, which might encourage you to say no to a drink a little more often in the future. After a month alcohol-free, your skin should feel more hydrated, plumper, and more even in tone.

How to have fun in Dry January

Saying no to the alcohol doesn’t mean saying no to the fun. Many people even find that their mood is improved after a break from the booze. Whether you’re regularly stressing about money or you suffer from the dreaded hangover anxiety, there are plenty of ways Dry January can help improve your mood.

Save the money you might have spent on drinks and plan a day out with some friends or family. You can still join in on dinners and drinking events throughout your Dry Jan, just opt for a freshly squeezed lime and soda or lemon water to replace your G&T perfectly.

Enhancing your skincare routine

If you’re diving into Dry Jan and expecting to see results on your skin, why not give yourself a boost by switching up your skincare routine?

Introducing a new moisturiser or night cream into your daily rotation can perk up your skin after the heavy Christmas period. Combined with a Dry January, adding a new product to your skincare routine is a great way to see results.

Our favourite post-festive tradition involves taking a little of the money saved in Dry Jan and splashing out on a new luxury skincare product. This year? We’re going for Elizabeth Arden’s iconic Eight Hour Cream and Dermalogica’s nourishing Special Cleansing Gel.

Searching for more inspiration? Keep exploring the Fragrance Direct blog for plenty of tips and tricks that’ll have you feeling like your best self in 2020.

Hypoallergenic Beauty – The Best Makeup & Skincare for Sensitive Skin

Hypoallergenic Beauty – The Best Makeup & Skincare for Sensitive Skin

Choosing the best skincare products can be tough. With so many tried-and-tested options available and brilliant brands emerging year after year, knowing which ingredients and formulas will work for you can be tricky. If you have sensitive skin or an allergy, the problem becomes even more difficult to avoid.

Well, we’re here for you, no matter what your skincare needs. In this guide, we’ll run through some of the biggest sensitive skin and skincare allergy questions, help you search for solutions, and recommend some of our favourite products to keep allergy-prone skin healthy.

Identifying sensitive or allergy-prone skin

One of the most important elements of skincare is being able to understand your unique needs. Every face is different, and whether you have dry, oily, or combination skin, you might suffer from allergies and sensitivities to some ingredients.

If you break out in an itchy or red rash after using a cosmetic, it’s a clear sign of an allergic reaction or irritation.

Unfortunately, symptoms aren’t always quite so easy to spot. Some allergies can lead to dryness, flakiness, bumps, and an uneven skin tone. Reactions like these are often dismissed because, for some people, they seem like an unavoidable problem. Before you start searching for more products to combat your skin issues, consider allergies. If you’re allergic to some skincare, the key will be removing or replacing steps from your routine.

The types of skin reaction

There are a few different ways to talk about skin allergies and reactions. For example, dermatitis is the term used to describe red, itchy, patchy rashes or skin irritations.

Contact dermatitis is the type of dermatitis caused by something that touches the skin. If you’re allergic to your haircare, deodorant, skincare, or makeup, you might break out in contact dermatitis of some kind.


Most cases of contact dermatitis are irritant contact dermatitis, which means that they’re caused by something you’ve touched but don’t involve the immune system. These reactions are only present on the skin.

Finally, allergic contact dermatitis is a true allergy to something. If you have allergic contact dermatitis and your skin comes into contact with a trigger, your reaction will usually be more severe and last for up to a couple of days.

What does a skincare allergy look like?

If you’re suffering from contact dermatitis, your symptoms might include:

  • Raised bumps
  • Itchy skin
  • Redness
  • Small blisters
  • Dryness
  • Dehydration

None of these symptoms sound like things you want to deal with on your face, or anywhere else on your body for that matter. That’s why recognising the signs of a skincare allergy or intolerance can be so helpful. The sooner you spot the symptoms, the sooner you can get to the bottom of what’s causing them.

Why am I allergic to skincare and beauty products?

Contact dermatitis is more likely to affect your face than on another part of your body because the skin there, particularly around your eyes, is thinner and more sensitive.

If you’re allergic or intolerant to some skincare, there isn’t a lot you can do. Thankfully, there are plenty more fish in the sea (in our case, products on the shelves), which means switching up your routine shouldn’t be too tricky.

Can I become allergic to products I’ve always used?

Yes. Irritant contact dermatitis, the type that doesn’t affect the immune system, can develop over time. This is because, if you’re using a skincare or makeup product every day, your skin can become overexposed to it. Applying a substance to your skin every day can wear down its ideal state and cause a reaction over time.

That’s why it can be a good idea to change your skincare and makeup routine occasionally. If you use harsh products on your face, like a cleanser or exfoliator that leaves your skin feeling clean and tight, it can be a good idea to switch these products for gentler alternatives for a while. You can always go back to them, but giving your skin a break might just help you avoid a reaction.

Which beauty products might I be allergic to?

Everyone’s skin is different, which means it’s impossible for us to tell you which ingredients and products you’re allergic to. However, some ingredients are more likely to cause a reaction than others.

A lot of people are allergic to fragrances, which can be found in skincare and haircare products. There are plenty of fragrance-free options available to combat this problem, so give them a go if you think you have an intolerance. Fragrance-free products are usually best for sensitive skin, whether an allergy is present or not.

Some preservatives can also cause contact dermatitis, though unfortunately they’re needed in most skincare and beauty products.

Finally, colourants. People who are allergic to colourants in food are also likely to be allergic to them in cosmetics.

Can I be allergic to natural beauty products?

Yes. Natural ingredients can cause contact dermatitis just like artificial ones. Just like we can be allergic to natural things like pollen, nuts, and fruits, we can be allergic to natural ingredients in skincare and cosmetics.

Essential oils are frequent offenders, with many people experiencing skin reactions to products which contain them, especially in high concentrations.

So, if you’re having a reaction to a cosmetic product, don’t dismiss your natural or organic products straight away!

Figuring out which products you’re allergic to

This can be tricky. If you’ve noticed an immediate reaction to a new product, you’ll be able to remove it from your routine without any difficulty. However, if you’ve started experiencing mild symptoms and you aren’t using any new products, you’ll need to put in some work to figure out what’s causing dermatitis.

Try removing products one at a time to see if symptoms improve. It can take a couple of weeks to see a difference, so you’ll need to be patient to get to the bottom of it.

If your symptoms are severe or won’t go away, it can be a good idea to visit a dermatologist. A dermatologist can perform a patch test to tell you which ingredients you’re allergic to.

Caring for skin after a reaction

If you do have a reaction, you’ll need to care for your skin properly to help it heal as quickly as possible. Most contact dermatitis will go away on its own, as long as you stop using the product that’s caused it, but there are some things you can do to help the process along.

  • Treat the affected area gently
  • Don’t scrub or scratch
  • No perfumed soaps or lotions
  • Apply a thin layer of Vaseline or soothing ointment

With the right treatment and time to recover, your skin should go back to its normal healthy state in no time.

The best hypoallergenic makeup and skincare

If you’re looking for new products to avoid contact dermatitis, these gentle and hypoallergenic options are a good place to start.

Gentle soaps and cleansers

Gentle moisturisers

Looking for more skincare and beauty tips? Keep exploring our blog for all the latest in skincare, makeup, beauty, and fragrance.

New Year’s Beauty Resolutions We’re All For Making In 2020

New Year’s Beauty Resolutions We’re All For Making In 2020

Every January marks the occasion of a new year and new goals. What resolutions have you already set for yourself? No matter how big or small, progress is progress and if you pair determination with passion you’re bound to achieve them in no time. So, you’ve had a little think about it but have you given any attention to the beauty department? Today, we’re pledging (with you) to stand by the following New Year’s Beauty Resolutions to start the decade living our best glamourous lives.

I will… learn more about ethical brands

A new year calls for a fresh focus on something new. When it comes to ethics in fashion and beauty, many of sustainable brands are often overlooked because not many people know much about the topic. Which, to be honest, is a little bit scary when you think about all the products you could potentially be using that have been tested on animals or may even contain animal products and you don’t even know it. It’s always a challenge to steer away from some of your favourite beauty products, but 2020 is not only a new year, it marks the start of a new decade. Make a change today!

January’s Brand Of The Month who kick-started 2020 is Love Beauty & Planet who are an incredible sustainability-led hair and skincare brand who create products with amazing cruelty-free and vegan formulas. In addition to this, their products are packaged in 100% recycled plastic bottles and jars, helping you to give a little bit of love back to the planet. They believe in the power of small acts of love to make both you and the planet more beautiful every day with phenomenal,ethically sourced ingredients. You can shop the range here at Fragrance Direct where you’ll also be able to take advantage of unbelievable discounts.

I will… invest in a skincare routine

We’ve all said it before but how many times last year did you get back in from an evening out and “accidentally” sleep in your makeup? If not to that extreme, there have most likely been a few occasions where you’ve gone to apply your mascara in the morning and noticed the brush doesn’t glide through as effortlessly because you’ve still got traces of yesterday’s on. Completely removing all traces of makeup isn’t difficult when you have an array of cleansing and hydrating skincare products to choose from.

I will… regularly clean my makeup brushes

Speaking of wanting to improve and take better care of our skin, the brushes and sponges we use to apply our makeup every day are just as important to look after. This is not only to keep them in good condition for optimal makeup results, it’s to keep them clean. All you need is a brush cleaner and a surface to lightly scrub them against (we’ve got trays too) and you’ll be good to go. A useful tip for whenever you run out or are waiting to stock up on supplies, a pea-sized amount of washing up liquid will do just the trick.

I will… be kinder to myself because I deserve it

Self-care is a topic we, as a society, are becoming more and more open to talking about especially regarding mental health and its surrounding topics. Implementing self-care practices is easy enough to do, it’s just about setting aside some time to relax and take a break. One of the best ways to inject feel-good vibes into your weekly routine is to indulge in a pamper session. Bath & Body goodness is just waiting around the corner!

I will… aim to get more sleep each night

Beauty sleep is a thing. It’s actually defined as a night’s sleep filled with extra resting time aka the hours gained by catching z’s before midnight hits. So many of us are guilty of endlessly scrolling through our phones while in bed and it’s not that good for us. Instead, this year, why not light a candle and start that book you’ve been waiting to read or simply keep technology time downstairs before taking yourself up to bed. You should find that it makes a big difference. To take things up a notch, why not try out a sleeping spray too?

Which of these resolutions will you be making for yourself? Be sure to tag us your progress @fragrancedirect on social!

Black Friday 2019: The Ultimate Guide & Best Buys

Black Friday 2019: The Ultimate Guide & Best Buys

The big BF can be a little bit overwhelming when you’re being pulled in every direction to snap up the best deals around. However, when it comes to beauty, there really is no better place to be than Fragrance Direct. Not only do we guarantee incredible prices all year round, this year we’re offering Black Friday deals like you’ve never seen before everyday in the lead up to Friday the 29th.

So, sit back, relax and get surfing our site to find all the beauty bargains you’ve been searching for this festive season!

Fragrance Gift Sets

From top designer brands to new fragrances and your favourite classics, our stunning collection of fragrance gift sets are some of the best Black Friday buys around. Featuring iconic brands including Paco Rabanne, Marc Jacobs, Jean Paul Gaultier and Hugo Boss, we can guarantee you’ll find all the gifts you’re searching for right here for phenomenal prices.

FD Beauty’s Black Friday Best Buy: BOSS THE Scent For Her Gift Set 50ml

Make Up Deals

In our Black Friday makeup category, we have a huge range of top makeup brands and high-end cosmetics at extra low prices thanks to the amazing discounts and offers available! Make sure you’re looking your best every day with a great selection of makeup products, makeup sets, and makeup brushes guaranteed to turn heads. Shop from top brands such as Rimmel, L’Oréal and Max Factor without having to leave the comfort of your own home and save money in the process.

FD Beauty’s Black Friday Best Buy: Royal Cosmetics Enhance 15pcs Cosmetic Brush Collection

Skincare Deals

Check out all our skincare products that are on offer this Black Friday week. Give your skin the attention it deserves with our huge range of products that tick every box, shop from a range of cleansers, toners, serums, moisturisers, eye creams and plenty more. Whatever your skin type, we have the product to suit! Bag a discount today and make the most of the amazing offers available!

FD Beauty’s Black Friday Best Buy: Dermalogica Your Most Radiant Skin Gift Set

Bath & Body Deals

In our Black Friday Bath & Body category you can find everything you need to pamper yourself at a great, discounted price! That way you can treat yourself or others whatever your budget! Take a look at our huge range of shower products, bath bombs, body lotions, gift sets and plenty more all on offer for Black Friday. Including bestselling brands and products that you can try now for even less!

FD Beauty’s Black Friday Best Buy: Gatineau Little Luxuries Collection

Hair Care Deals

Shop from our huge range of haircare products that are all on offer for the Black Friday period! Bringing you top products at amazing discounts you can be sure to find the products that will keep your locks looking luscious. Our huge haircare range includes premium salon brands for both men and women so we have something to suit everyone. Looking for the perfect gift for a hair fanatic? Shop our great range of haircare gift sets at great discounts too!

FD Beauty’s Black Friday Best Buy: Sexy Hair Curl Defining Shampoo & Conditioner Duo

Candles & Home Deals

What’s more inviting than a home that smells gorgeous and feels cosy? Get your hands on some of our bestselling candles, diffusers and home fragrance products all with huge discounts off the RRP for Black Friday! Bag your favourite scents from big name brands such as Yankee or Woodwick at a fraction of the usual price, make sure you snap them up before Black Friday is over!

FD Beauty’s Black Friday Best Buy: Yankee Candle 12 Votive Book 2019 Gift Set

Which sections can’t you wait to get shopping? If you’re well and truly into the Christmas shopping season, there couldn’t be a better time to get buying all your gifts!

The Perfect Christmas Gift For Every Zodiac Sign

The Perfect Christmas Gift For Every Zodiac Sign


When your family and friends won’t give you a straight answer, you’ve got to take matters into your own hands one way or another. Buying Christmas presents can be a little bit stressful when you have no idea what to get. Not today. With our guide to Christmas gifting based on the magical wonders of zodiac signs, you’ll never be short of ideas again. So, let’s get stuck in.


Aries
20 March – 19 April
Aries enjoy a personal feel to their gifts because they like to be recognised as individuals although they’d appreciate almost any gift because they believe it’s the thought that counts. If you really want to blow an Aries away, treat them to something new that you know matches their style and tastes.
For Him: Jean Paul Gaultier Le Beau Male Gift Set 125ml
For Her: Gatineau Limited Edition Best-Sellers Collection


Taurus
20 April – 20 May
Tauruses are ruled by Venus, the planet of beauty. It’s likely that your Taurus friend has exquisite taste and would love to receive a luxurious gift. However, this doesn’t mean that you need to spend lots on them. The ideal gift for a Taurus is something personal with that extra special touch.
For Him: Proraso Vintage Refreshing Grooming Selection Tin
For Her: Clarins Instant Beauty Makers Collection


Gemini
21 May – 20 June
A Gemini’s interests are forever changing and they’re always getting into new things so it’s pretty hard to predict exactly what they’d want. However, you just can’t go wrong with individualisation. Geminis are the sign of communication and learning, so something hobby-related is always a safe bet or something for them to use to wind down and have a pamper would be perfect.
For Him: Bomb Hammer Time Toolbox Gift Pack
For Her: Dermalogica Smooth Skin Favourites Gift Set


Cancer
21 June – 22 July
Cancers love making memories and will always appreciate something based around that. Whether it’s a gift that relates to something you both love, have a joke about or memory of, they’ll love it. Perhaps you even have a scent-sational memory together. Here are a couple of iconic fragrances they may have tried and loved in this past but buying for a Cancer is truly down to you.
For Him: Calvin Klein Eternity Men Eau de Toilette Spray 100ml
For Her: BOSS Orange Women Gift Set 30ml


Leo
23 July – 22 August
Leo’s are lovers of anything and everything. Whether it’s art, beauty or fashion, their interests are limitless. A typical Leo pays lots of attention to their looks too, so something to indulge in could make the ideal present for a friend of this zodiac sign this Christmas.
For Him: Prada L’Homme Aftershave Balm 125ml
For Her: Elizabeth Arden Mini Lip Gloss Set


Virgo
23 August – 22 September
Virgos are typically obsessed with practicality and productivity. They’re all about purpose and so they’d find a gift that they can physically use useful and would be incredibly grateful. Perhaps they travel a lot and they’re in need of useful products to take with them on their journeys. That would be a great place to start looking!
For Him: Versace Eros Flame Eau de Parfum Spray (Travel size 30ml)
For Her: Giorgio Armani Si Fiori Eau de Parfum Spray (Travel size 30ml)


Libra
23 September – 22 October
Cosmetics and beauty supplies are the way to a Libra’s heart. They don’t keep up with trends – they set them. This sign is typically the most up-to-date with lots of things that are going on in the world – and the shops. Why not show a Libra close to you just how much they mean to you with a little bit of luxury this Christmas!
For Him: BOSS The Scent For Him Gift Set
For Her: SOSU By SJ You’re Making Me Brush Ultimate Collection


Scorpio
23 October – 21 November
Known for their complexity, Scorpio’s are one of the most difficult zodiac signs to buy for. They’ll sense a last-minute gift any day any time, so you’re best off putting a decent amount of thought into this one and really think about what they’re into. Anything sentimental is always a safe bet so get thinking, get shopping.
For Him: Armani Code Absolu Gift Set 60ml
For Her: YSL Libre Eau de Parfum Spray 90ml


Sagittarius
22 November – 21 December
The adventurous ones. A typical Sagittarius loves to explore and travel. They’re the friend that’s probably already got their summer plans sorted filled with a holiday and a couple of road trips. Anything travel or sun-related would make a fabulous gift along with anything practical they can take on holidays with them would be perfect.
For Him: Man Stuff Ultimate 6 Pack Gift Set 150ml
For Her: Milkshake Sun & More Body Set


Capricorn
22 December – 19 January
Being an earth sign, a Capricorn enjoys a gift with purpose. People of this sign are often associated with status and achievement so a standout gift if your best bet. They’re not after the biggest, best, most expensive present just something they can connect with whether it’s one of their all-time favourite beauty products or something new to try out that you think they’d love.
For Him: Gucci Guilty Eau de Toilette For Him 150ml
For Her: Marc Jacobs Daisy Love Eau So Sweet Gift Set 50ml


Aquarius
20 January – 17 February
An Aquarius loves a gadget. They love technology and exploring new things. Something new and fun would be right up their street as it’s these kinds of spontaneous gifts that they love receiving the most!
For Him: Edwin Jagger Ebony 4 Piece Shaving Set
For Her: Beurer TL100 2 In 1 Daylight And Moodlight


Pisces
18 February – 19 March
As water signs, Pisces love a gift with sentimental value and emotional meaning. Pisces are not naturally materialistic people, so a big, expensive gift isn’t likely to impress them as much as something that shows you know them really well. They’re always daydreaming so the more creative the gift, the better.
For Him: Ted Baker Ted’s Grooming Room Travel Trio Set
For Her: NUXE Aquabella Beauty Pouch

We hope you found this guide to Christmas gifting based on your recipient’s zodiac sign helpful!

Menopause Skin and Haircare – The Best Products for Menopausal Skin and Hair

Menopause Skin and Haircare – The Best Products for Menopausal Skin and Hair


Menopause affects every woman, and what’s more, it affects every woman differently. The transition can be simple enough, but for some women it’s tough, with uncomfortable symptoms and changes threatening to last for years.

Menopause affects every woman, and what’s more, it affects every woman differently. The transition can be simple enough, but for some women it’s tough, with uncomfortable symptoms and changes threatening to last for years.

What is menopause?

The menopause is the name for the changes that women go through as they stop having periods. Periods can become less frequent over some months or years before they stop altogether, at which point women stop being able to get pregnant naturally.

It’s a natural part of ageing, and not something you should be worried about. Because it happens to every woman, you should be able to ask anyone older for help and advice if you’re approaching that time. Enter experienced friends and relatives!

When does menopause start?

Menopause usually kicks off when women are between 45 and 55 years old, which is the age that oestrogen levels start to decline. The UK average age for menopause is 51, though it’s not unheard of for women to experience their menopause earlier, with around one per cent of women seeing the first symptoms before they reach the age of 40. This is known as premature menopause because it’s earlier than expected.

What happens during menopause?

If you’re wondering what the early signs of menopause are, and what will happen throughout your transition, you might be disappointed. Because every woman’s menopause is different, it’s impossible to predict what exactly it’s going to be like for you.

Here are some of the most common symptoms of menopause:

• Hot flushes
• Night sweats
• Vaginal dryness
• Sleeplessness
• Irritated skin
• Reduction of skin elasticity
• Low mood
• Anxiety
• Reduced sex drive
• Lack of concentration
• Memory problems

The menopause is a personal experience for every woman, not just a medical condition. Once your menopause is over, you won’t be able to get pregnant naturally anymore. This can be upsetting for some women, while others have more problems with the symptoms and effects on the body.

How long does menopause last?

Menopause symptoms can start months or years before your period ends, which means you’ll need to endure them for the whole transition time, and for up to four years after your last period. Some women’s menopause lasts for much longer, and it can also happen more quickly.

Making the menopause easier at home

Hopefully, all this talk of hot flushes and vaginal dryness hasn’t got you too worried. As we keep saying, menopause is perfectly normal, and all women over a certain age must go through it.

There are, however, some things you can do at home to help make your menopause as easy and fuss-free as possible and to keep yourself feeling good while the transition takes place.

Eat well throughout the menopause

Maintaining a healthy weight and eating well to stay strong and nourished can help improve some of the symptoms of menopause. For example, avoiding stimulants like coffee and spicy foods can help to reduce hot flushes, while avoiding sugary foods can help to increase your energy levels throughout the day and let you sleep better at night.

Exercise to ease symptoms

Keep your body working at its best by exercising and stretching throughout your menopause. Regular exercise can help you stay on top of mood swings and anxiety. Try to find workouts that you enjoy so you’re more likely to keep it up.

Stop smoking and reduce alcohol consumption

Smoking doesn’t help with any health condition, and menopause is no different. Smoking has been linked to early menopause, with heavy smokers experiencing symptoms one to two years earlier than non-smokers on average.

Alcohol can also influence menopause symptoms, and while we aren’t suggesting you stop drinking altogether, you should try to cut back your intake in favour of your health and wellbeing.

Try to stay positive!

Easier said than done, we know. The menopause leads to a hormone imbalance which can cause stress, anxiety, and even depression. If you feel yourself heading that way, try to introduce relaxation techniques into your routine, and don’t feel bad about making time for yourself. It might also help to seek counselling.

Treatments for the symptoms of menopause

If your menopausal symptoms are causing you trouble, visit your doctor to discuss your options. There are several treatments that you can go for if you have severe symptoms that are getting in the way of your day-to-day.

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT)

HRT can include taking tablets, using skin patches and gels, or receiving implants that replace oestrogen, which is lost during the menopause.

Vaginal oestrogen creams or moisturisers

Vaginal dryness can be one of the most uncomfortable symptoms of menopause. Using a vaginal oestrogen cream, lubricant, or moisturiser can help to relieve symptoms day-to-day and can also make having sex more comfortable and enjoyable.

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)

CBT is a type of therapy that can help with mood and anxiety and involves talking things through with a therapist to change the way you think, react, and behave.

Menopause and skincare

Our skin changes throughout our lives, and just like you’ll require a different type of care when you’re 30 than you did when you were 13, you’ll need to switch up your routine when the menopause hits.

The menopause can have a big impact on your skin, and one of the most common problems that women face is increased dryness. Drier skin is the result of your body’s oestrogen drop, which reduces skin’s ability to hold moisture, leading to a dry complexion.

Menopause and itchy skin

Many women experience itchy skin throughout their menopause, which is caused by pesky hormonal changes. The problem should ease up by itself over time, but to help alleviate the itching you can hold something cool on your skin or take cool showers and wear loose cotton clothing that lets your skin breathe.

The best skin care for menopause

To keep your skin looking plump and youthful throughout the menopause, choose the best anti-ageing moisturising products and apply them as part of a regular routine.

Here are some of the best skincare products for menopause:

Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Anti-Wrinkle Day Cream
Dermalogica AGE Smart Dynamic Skin Recovery SPF 50
Dermalogica AGE Smart Super Rich Repair
Guinot Age Logic Cellulaire Youth Renewing Skin Cream
REN Clean Skincare Firming & Smoothing Serum
Retinol Facial Oil
Elizabeth Arden Skin Illuminating Moisturising Cream
Thalgo Hyaluronic Filler
Thalgo Hyaluronic Cream
Natio Ageless Organic Rosehip Oil

Look out for products with intense moisturising properties and ingredients like hyaluronic acid, which retains moisture and can help keep menopausal skin plump and hydrated.

Menopause and haircare

It can be worrying to think about menopause changing the condition and thickness of your hair, but unfortunately, hair loss is a common symptom of the transition.

Menopause and hair loss

Menopause can cause the condition and thickness of the hair to worsen as hormone levels change. Is there anything you can do to protect hair from the menopause? You might want to start by switching up the products you use to some which have been formulated for ageing hair.

If you’re noticing your hair is thinning, you might want to try reducing the amount of heat you use on it to help maintain the healthiest condition possible. Comb through your hair while it has conditioner in, and try to avoid brushing wet hair when you get out of the bath or shower, as this can cause increased breakage.

The best shampoo for menopausal hair

The best shampoos for menopausal hair include:

Foltene Shampoo for Thinning Hair
Jason Thin to Thick Extra Volume Shampoo
Biolage Full Density Shampoo
L’Oreal Elvive Thickening Shampoo
Biolage Full Density Shampoo

Switch one of these thickening shampoos into your weekly routine and see if you notice any improvement in the feel of your hair!

The best conditioner for menopausal hair

So, you’ve changed your shampoo to treat your menopausal hair better. It makes sense to swap out your conditioner for a thickening option while you’re at it to try and get the most out of your locks.

NOTE: If your shampoo offers a partner conditioner, use that to compliment the ingredients and get more from your product.

Here are our favourite thickening conditioners for menopausal hair:

Philip Kingsley Moisture Balancing Conditioner
Philip Kingsley Body Building Conditioner
La Brasiliana Due Keratin and Collagen Conditioner
Biolage Volumebloom Conditioner
Tresemme 24 Hour Body Conditioner

Using a thickening conditioner can work wonders on the appearance of your hair, and help you feel like it’s fuller and more voluminous throughout your menopause.

For more of our health and beauty guides, keep exploring the Fragrance Direct blog. You can discover our favourite brands, including Organic Pharmacy, Dermalogica, and Natura, and learn more about skin and hair conditions and how to treat them. Browse our blog and tackle any skincare or beauty problem with ease.