Can the contraceptive pill cause sun damage?

I dropped into As Nature Intended recently to stock up on supplements and got talking to the lovely Nicky about all things wellbeing.

She’s one of the most knowledgable natural specialists I’ve met in a long while (do stop by the Chiswick branch if you need any advice) – and it was her that mentioned a link between the contraceptive pill and the effects of sun on the skin.

According to the American Skin Association, the contraceptive pill, as well as some antibiotics and antihistamines can increase the skin’s sensitivity to the sun’s rays.

Increased sensitivity means that sunlight’s UVA & UVB rays are more likely to inflame or mutate skin cells, causing the visible and invisible damage we’re all familiar with.

I know the sun’s not exactly beating down on us here in the UK at the moment, but it’s certainly worth remembering come the summer.

Is this side effect something you were aware of?

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  • Elsa

    This has given me an absolute eureka moment!

    I’ve always had sensitive skin but up until I was about 17 I always turned a lovely golden brown when I went in the sun but since then my skin has a complete intolerance to it and burning, even with factor 50 being frequently re-applied and unfortunately even leaving scarring in places and the most embarassing heat rashes appearing.

    I’ve now realised that I was in fact 17 when I started taking the pill and the scarring I have was from my first holiday away since taking it. After three years the scars are fading but any tips you have to help them along their way would be greatly appreciated. Thankyou for this article!

  • Sarah Brown

    Hi Elsa,

    Those lightbulb moments are the best – at least you know now what’s causing your sun sensitivity and can pass the advice on! Our Rosehip BioRegenerate oil is proven to improve the appearance of scars and uneven skin tone – have you tried it before? Pat 2-3 drops into slightly damp skin or dab onto the affected areas with a cotton bud:

    Hope of help,

    Sarah x

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