A lot of young women we see here experience a flare of acne, just before or during their periods and get very alarmed about it, considering the possibility of a hormonal imbalance. To get straight to the point, this bout of acne does not indicate a hormonal imbalance at all and is actually one of the most commonly circulated medical myths that I have come across. This phenomenon rather indicates that you have a normal hormonal cycle!
Why does it happen then?
Just before periods, there is a spike in the levels of the hormone Progesterone. This hormone does two significant things to the skin. First, it swells up the oil glands, causing them to squeeze against the orifices of the glands (where the oil exits), blocking the oil pathway. Second, this hormone also increases the production rate of oil (known as Sebum). Now a blocked orifice with extra oil than usual is double trouble and can lead to an opportunistic infection by bacteria, causing swelling and inflammation, ending up as acne.
What can you do?
You can actually do a lot to help the situation. Stay hydrated -ingest a lot of fluids during the menstrual cycle time and before. Minimize your use of salt and caffeine. Also stay off maida, trans-fats, and junk food.