3 Steps to Beating Adult Hormonal Acne in Females (& What’s Worked For Me!)

A couple posts ago, I gave you a ridiculously long list of opinions about how to treat acne naturally.

Now, if you feel as lost as ever after reading it, I really can’t blame ya! You might be wondering what I thought about the list. Was there a nugget of gold that I picked out of that?

Most of it was all stuff that I had heard before and lots of it I have talked about on the blog. Obviously some great advice – try eliminating or cutting way back on dairy; gluten; sugar, ditch commercial products, etc. Everyone’s different and this stuff is all good advice that may work like a million dollars for you.

To me, the one thing that stood out the most out of the entire list as something eye-catchingly interesting was this:

“I have had success with my female clients who have acne with a protocol of three months on vitex herb (chastetree berry, also known as “Agnus Castus” in some parts of the world), for balancing hormones, tincture of milk thistle for the liver, and burdock root to cleanse blood. It has worked wonders.”

What’s Adult Hormonal Acne?

Well, essentially everyone’s acne is hormonal, so this title is quite misleading. In all cases hormones are what tell the body to create acne. And if they are doing that, and you have acne, it means that your hormones are not doing the right things.

Acne isn’t, like, a normal thing that just happens for no reason. Hormones that do the right things don’t give you disease. And hormones don’t just do the wrong things just for the heck of it, they do it because of some other reason. Something is influencing them to mess up their jobs and give you acne.

However, there is a lot of different things that can mess up your hormones, and a lot of different hormonal imbalances that can result.

It appears like basically all and every hormone imbalance can cause acne, and unfortunately, I really don’t have them all exactly straightened out in order to explain them, or how to treat them specifically. It’s rather mindboggling, so I apologize. The best thing you can do if you want to know about your specific hormone issues, is to get a saliva hormone test done and talk to a natural therapist about an appropriate course of action for you.

So, having said that – there is a specific type of hormonal acne in adult women that is very, very, veeerrry common, and while all acne is technically hormonal, this one has been dubbed and is often referred to specifically as “Hormonal Acne”.

This acne usually occurs around the mouth, chin, and jawline in adult women (often can be cystic), and tends to appear or gets worse before menstruation and/or during ovulation. It’s usually accompanied by other PMS symptoms, and irregular periods.

This type of acne is usually caused by something called estrogen dominance, where your estrogen and progesterone are not in balance, usually due to having high ‘bad estrogens’ (which we accumulate from the environment from things like plastic). The protocol I’m about to describe might also work with hormonal PCOS acne as I sometimes see that ladies with PCOS use the same supplements, but I’m not 100% sure of the details quite yet (until then, check out this amazing ebook on PCOS, because this lady DOES know her stuff when it comes to that).

Also, this protocol should work for those who have acne due to coming off birth control pills (and if you are still on birth control but want to be off it, consider combining this protocol with weaning off it to lessen the chance of acne afterwards).

Clean Up Your Diet & Lifestyle First and Foremost

With all acne, the first line of defence is to fix up your diet if you eat a lot of processed foods, get better sleep, lower your stress, and exercise. Switch to a gentle and natural skin care routine too, A generally unhealthy lifestyle is the biggest reason that anyone’s hormones are going to be out of whack and produce acne (no matter what kind of acne you have).

For some people though – especially adult, female women with this type of acne – is that the diet and lifestyle improvements manage to make a huuuuge difference, but they can’t seem to get all the way to being clear, even though they feel like they’ve done everything.

This has been my problem… over the last couple of years since getting rid of my severe acne, I have managed to maintain 90% clear skin, but I have still struggled with mild, cyclical acne breakouts around my chin that come and go. They have driven me up the wall and crazy, because nothing has seemed to work, and I’ve tried tons of stuff. Lol – you probably know this because I’ve whined about it a ton on my blog!

My usual reaction to the anxiety of having this continued acne was to want to control my diet even further, or just be really strict about it. Which never did anything to improve my skin, but controlling my diet was a way for me to control my unpleasant feelings about the whole situation. Of course, in the end that only makes things worse by causing stress.

So anyway… thanks in big part to Fran Kerr and Alexis Smart (the lady who posted about vitex, burdock, and milk thistle), my own experience, and a few other smatterings of info that have come on my radar lately, I’ve come to a few realizations that can really help the ladies out there struggling with the hormonal acne.

1) Use a Supplement – Either DIM, Vitex, or Both

It seems like hormonal acne just needs a little helper to get things back on track, and that can be either of these two supplements or taking them both. DIM (Diindolymethane) works by helping your liver to detoxify ‘bad estrogens’ from your body and promote good estrogen.

Vitex works on your pituitary gland, and helps it regulate its own hormone production, which can get your progesterone and good estrogens back in balance (warning: most people do just fine on Vitex, but for some people with certain body chemistries, Vitex can have quite a few side effects. Make sure to do your own thorough research on the herb before deciding to take it. Also click here to read follow up post: Vitex Q & A).

2) Do Something For Your Liver

Estrogen dominance and the liver are very closely linked because the liver is where excess estrogen will get detoxified and swept out of the body via the bowel. With an inefficient liver, the excess estrogen will have the chance to recirculate throughout the body.

So as I just said that DIM helps your liver to detoxify bad estrogens, a good liver supplement will also help this process along. Some might suggest doing the liver flush, but… I tried that, and it was a horrible, horrible experience, so I can’t say I really recommend it even though some people do get pretty great results with it. That’s one for you to make up your own mind on! Also – the liver is a big reason that improving your lifestyle will improve hormonal acne – the fewer toxins that it has to sift through, the better it can detoxify the hormones.

Alexis recommends milk thistle for this purpose, but there are other ones too (also, don’t take milk thistle if you have a ragweed allergy). I use a mixed herbal supplement called Thorne SAT Liver Support that I had recommended to me by my Naturopath. Burdock root, that Alexis suggests, is also a supplement that supports the liver and purifies the blood from excess estrogens that are floating around.

3) Knock Out Stress

When you’re stressed, your body creates cortisol, which takes away from the proper function of other body processes, including endrocrine production. This is how chronic stress can lead to acne, since without proper hormonal production, the right hormones don’t get made and it shows up on your face.

I’ve heard many, many women say that their hormonal acne gets so much worse when they’re stressed. Work on lowering that stress, including hidden sources of stress like low self esteem – and also stress and worry over controlling your food (which I will talk about in a second). Body stressors count here too like not eating enough food, following a diet long term that heavily restricts a certain macronutrient, and overexercising.

Anyway, after her comment intrigued me, I emailed Alexis to ask her to elaborate on her protocol and she said this:

“Acne, I have found is usually related to hormonal or digestive issues. When it’s hormonal, I often see more breakouts around the chin and mouth. I usually suggest a capsule form of vitex and take it as directed. I like Gaia brand herbs or I just get any organic cap they have at the healthfood store. I like to use liquid tinctures for the milk thistle and burdock. I love HerbPharm brand. I recommend three times a day for each, away from food. I like to to do ten days on and three days off.”

This Stuff Has Totally Worked For Me. And I’m Totally Stoked About It.

Me stoked to have clear skin. And a puppy.

I’m not taking Vitex, but I’ve mentioned in a few other posts that I’ve been taking Estroblock, 3 capsules a day (Read here for follow up post: Estroblock Q & A, which answers many further questions about this awesome, wonderful supplement – including whether you should take the regular or Triple Strength Estroblock, and whether men and teenagers can also take it for acne).

Estroblock is a very powerful form of DIM and one of the best brands of this supplement. I recommend it because I know that it works, and can’t really vouch for the quality or effectiveness of other, cheaper DIM supplements.

I’ve been on it for nearly five months now. About a month ago, I decided to start taking Thorne SAT Liver Support and Burdock Root to really, really cement my results.

Well, it took  a couple of months from when I started taking Estroblock to really get consistent, but honestly, my skin has seriously never looked better and this is the longest it’s been consistently and entirely clear for, since… well… since I was on birth control as a teenager. I do still get very small pimples every once in a while, but I know my skin best and they are so small and infrequent and go away so fast that it doesn’t bother me at all – over all, I have been SO happy with it.

Not only that but over the last 6 or 7 months, I’ve totally stopped caring so much about being perfect with my diet and have started relaxing way more (I’d like to give a big shout out to Matt Stone for this)… I mostly eat whole foods still because that’s healthy and that’s what I’m used to, but I go out for dinner more, I eat dairy and gluten and processed foods and sugary desserts with my friends and family (and sometimes at home too), and the best part is that I don’t WORRY about it when I eat things I would have formerly worried about.

I mean, I used to do the 90/10 rule before too, and I’d eat processed foods sometimes, and I’d sometimes eat things that I believed due to all the nutrition stuff that I’ve read that I “shouldn’t” eat, but the big difference here is that this has been the first time that I’ve truly found myself truly, honestly, not worrying about it. It’s the first time there hasn’t been nagging fear at the back of my head.

I haven’t felt this relaxed about food since before my acne got severe, so this lowered stress probably has contributed to the clear skin as well. Plus, I feel like I cleared out some old emotional issues by getting reiki done in the summer (which I’ll do a follow up on in a future post).

Anyway… I’m stoked out of my head and feeling so great about finding something that has really truly worked to get rid of that last bit of acne that just wouldn’t budge. Knock on wood that it sticks, but so far so good. I hope this post helps the other ladies out there suffering with hormonal acne.

Watch Me Talk About Hormonal Acne in Video

Please share your experiences! What do you think of this protocol and have you found something that has made a big difference for your hormonal acne?

[UPDATE] – For an updated, revised, and much more detailed version of this post, please check out my brand new ebook The Love Vitamin’s Guide to Female Hormonal Acne!

photo by greekadman, and kk

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  1. Nathan says

    I had wondered…. whether it was the caveman routine or “something else” that has helped you skin to become even more radiant in the last few months…

    You really do look amazing and I’m so happy that you are not as restrictive or stressed out about your diet. I remember earlier this year when you went through WAPF and the GAPS diet there were quite stressful for you, but hey, life is a journey and we are here to learn!

    And it snowed for you! Happy holidays :)
    Are you still taking the prescript assist probiotic? The Green pastures FCLO butter blend? Caveman routing still going strong? I’m doing these 3 things but I still feel that there is “something” else I can be doing. Whilst my diet is ok, it’s still not great and I had thought about doing the candida cleanse again, but I’m really loving dried cranberries and fresh oranges right now and I don’t want to limit my diet anymore. (Plus poor sleep is a big factor for me)

    I use to take burdock root too, but it didn’t work for me. Would you say the liv-tox is a better or more powerful supplement?

    This is what I have found: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Enzymatic-Therapy-Liv-A-Tox-90-Tabs/dp/B0013OQCHW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1356629320&sr=8-1

    I know that for men, androgens are a hormone that causes other imbalances… Are you aware of and specific supplements for males too?

    • Tracy says

      Hi Nathan :)
      Right now I’m not taking a probiotic, I am taking FCLO, but I’m not very good at remembering to take it every day like I should. I’m not sure how Liv-tox compares to burdock root side by side effectiveness… that Liv-A-Tox you linked to isn’t the same one, but Enzymatic Therapy is a good brand of supplements so it’s probably good too.

      As for supplements for men… unfortunately I don’t have it all figured out yet… took me long enough to get this one sorted hahah… as I said, there’s like a bajillion different things your hormones could be doing, and the only real way to know is to get a saliva hormone test done.

      • Jessica says

        Hi Tracy, I recently started taking Milk Thistle capsules, Burdock root capsules, and regular strength Estroblock, twice a day, for about a month now. Is this combination a good one to start out on? Or should I incorporate something else into my supplement routine? I know it takes a couple months to really notice anything but so far I haven’t noticed any change in my hormonal acne.


        • says

          Hi Jessica sounds like a good combo. – you might not be taking enough Estroblock though… you might want to take at least three pills of the regular per day, maybe even four. Or two of the triple strength. You’re right, it did take me 2 or 3 months to see the full benefit from 3 of the regular estroblocks per day, so stay patient.

          • Jessica says

            Hey Tracy! So since we’ve last talked I went right to triple strength Estroblock. I finished one bottle and I’m almost done with my second while also continuing the milk thistle and burdock root supplements. Sad to say nothing has taken an effect on my skin. I’ve been on some form of Estroblock since the beginning of August and no results :(. I’ve completely cleaned my diet too. I’m actually doing the Paleo way of living and its helped my stomach out tremendously. I’m hoping to cure any leaky gut that I may have going on that also may be effecting my skin. I’m just a little discouraged and don’t know if I should continue taking the supplements? What are your thoughts? My skin is at its all time worst and I have no idea why.

            • says

              Hi Jessica, try reducing your dose…. try three or four of the regular strength spread out throughout the day. I’m starting to find that more isn’t necessarily better and people are breaking out more when they are jumping into higher doses. I’ve been recommending triple strength because I found for ME it seemed to work better than the regular but it seems to be causing problems for people and I think people would be better with the regular strength … more room to play around with it to find your right dose and spread them throughout the day which I think makes it more effective

  2. Christelle says

    Hey Tracy! So good to hear that Estroblock has been working for you!
    I definitely believe that vitex works wonders for women. I have been off the birth control pill for almost 6 months now, and my skin is (touch wood it will stay this way) fricking great! I take 1 capsule of vitex/day (I used to take it religiously, but this months I just took it when I remembered, often once or twice a week), one teaspoon of fermented cod liver oil, and then I just hope for the best. Every now and again, I drink burdock root herbal tea, and take probiotics.
    When I started weaning off birth control, I was really strict about what I was eating, and I avoided all sugars, starchy foods, processed foods, soy, gluten, etc. Today, I eat whatever I feel like eating, and my skin is 100% clear. These past weeks I’ve been cooking beautiful whole food meal AND pigging out on chocolates with my friends and family, because hey, c’est la vie, and it makes me happy!

    I have actually just finished writing you an article about how I weaned off the pill, so if you like I can send it to you and you can have a read and see if it’s appropriate material for your blog. But in all cases, yes, this adventure has been fantastic, and I’m so sure that other women like me who have suffered from hormonal acne in the past CAN get clear skin and live happy healthy lives! Tomorrow I’m turning 30, and I’m so glad to be off the pill, and living life to the full! A massive thank you, Tracy! If someone had told me last year that I’d hit 30 acne free and off the artificial hormones, I would never have believed it! :-)

    • Tracy says

      Yay, I’m so happy to hear of your success Christelle, and I really really appreciate the help you are giving the other women in that thread about weaning off the pill. And I’m SUPER stoked that you wrote an article to share your experience with it, please send it on over!!

    • says

      Great article thanks! I have really bad cystic acne as well. I have been gluten and mostly dairy free for several months now and I haven’t seen much improvement. I’ve also tried estro block with very minimal success. Eliminating sugar from my diet seemed to help a bit though.

      Recently I started using herbs internally that I harvested in my backyard and saw a huge change in my progress! I’m thinking my liver just needed some help. http://sparrowchef.blogspot.com/2014/07/treating-cystichormonal-acne-with-herbs.html

  3. says

    Hi Tracy,
    This resonated with me so much. I developed very disordered eating habits in my efforts to clear my skin – I became afraid of SO many foods and just obsessed with eating “perfectly.” With the help of people like Matt Stone and Gwyneth Olwyn, I’m now getting back on track… but it doesn’t help that my skin is still not clear. It’s a daily battle for me convincing myself that it doesn’t have to do with my still-stellar diet. It’s tough because when I was following certain diets and was fearful of food, I lost a lot of weight because there was so few things I could eat. My acne disappeared during this time simply because my body wasn’t producing any hormones. As soon as I began – in Matt Stone’s words – “Diet Recovery,” I no longer appeared emaciated and regained a lot of health – however, the acne began coming back.

    I’m currently liver flushing (done four already), take liver supportive supplements, and I’ve been taking estroblock for 2 months. I wish I could say all my acne is gone, but alas it’s not. I just got a new cyst on my right cheek last week. :( I’m truly stumped.

    Nonetheless, thank you so much for this post. I have so much love for you and this blog. :)


    • Tracy says

      Hi Desi, I’m glad to hear you enjoyed the post, and thanks for sharing your experience. It’s really frustrating some times that trying to get healthy is like this silly little dance… as you say, when you were eating unhealthfully by restricting your food, you were clear, and then when you started eating more, you are breaking out again even though you feel so much healthier. In the end, it might just be a longer process before you see both resolve themselves and need to be patient.

      Also have you been tested with a natural therapist to see if you have food sensitivities? I think this is generally a saner way to look at food restriction instead of going by the generalizations and sweeping food villianry that goes on on the internet… many people do have certain foods that can cause acne and should be avoided at least in the short term, but what they actually are is different for everyone.. perhaps you were avoiding one that you were very sensitive to when you were dieting, that now you are eating again?

      • says

        Thanks for your thoughts, Tracy. I’ve taken many food intolerance tests before, actually – over the years. My last one showed exactly what the other ones have shown: My only big food intolerance is gluten and bakers/brewers yeast. I also avoid dairy just because. I haven’t really eating sugar (not even fruit) in nearly two years. I just spoke with my naturopath on the phone and she really thinks I need to go back on the super strict anti-candida diet that I was on for 1.5 YEARS – no grains, starchy vegetables, beans, sugars, or anything else high carb. A test came back revealing that I have some unpleasant microbes in my gut. Klebsiella (spelling?), I believe. The marathon-long anti-candida diet was what triggered the food anxiety in the first place. I feel so lost. I don’t know what to do at this point! Any ideas from anyone would be welcome.

        • Tracy says

          Hi Desi,
          Hmm, going back on a strict long term candida diet if that was the source of your eating anxiety doesn’t sound like a good idea if you ask me!! Especially if you felt unhealthy and emaciated on it. I’m not sure what to suggest – maybe a saliva hormone test so you can actually see for sure what your hormones are doing? Have you seen any improvement at all on Estroblock? My skin didn’t get consistently clear on it until probably two or three months in, so I don’t know if it’s just a patience thing. And with the liver… people who are advocates of the liver flush say you sometimes have to do them like 11 times before getting permanent results!! Sounds crazy to me… but I don’t know. Do you see any improvement after you do a flush? Lots say they clear up a bit after a flush and then the acne comes back a week later, that is, until they’ve done enough flushes.

          • Erin says

            My thoughts, personally… 4 liver flushes is WAY too much. I have done this cleanse myself, and from what I know it is only to be done once a year (maaaybe twice) because the liver needs time to heal itself from the expelled stones leaving behind, essentially, open wounds. If the liver is stressed it will not do its job, thus the acne will not go away.

            • Veronica says

              Please do NOT do or recommend the liver flush. The liver flush does not actually work and it is harmful to your body to keep doing this. It is impossible for oil and citrus juice to be recognized immediately upon drinking for the bile duct to “dump” and cause the liver to “flush”. The body is only used to what you do every day, which is why alcoholics can tolerate far more alcohol than those who never drink and then drink a lot all at once. The body cannot handle it and it becomes drunk. If you knew actual body anatomy you would see it is impossible for the liver flush to actually work, and the only thing that is passed out is saponified oil which because little balls because of the citrus juice you drink. Please talk to an actual doctor or read a physiology textbook to see how this is impossible. I am going to do a youtube video on this because it makes me so mad so many people get sick from doing this, thinking they need to do it again and again and one day they will get “better”. You feel better after simply because you made yourself feel so sick and your body had to work to get all that excess oil out of you.


  4. Tori says

    This article is amazing! I suffer from PCOS (or is that ‘live with’?!) and it truly is a pain in the arse. After 4 years of being incredibly careful with what I eat and put on my face (to soothe and get rid of acne), when I was diagnosed with PCOS 9 months ago, it was like a cloud had been lifted. Everything suddenly made sense; the mood swings, the acne, the always being hot, the painful abdomen. Being diagnosed gave me options. I soon realised that what I eat makes very little difference to hormonal acne – it just gave me a feeling of control.

    I urge everyone woman who has hormonal acne (around the jawline, chin and mouth) and has irregular periods OR problems losing weight OR excess hair to get tested for PCOS. It’s so common and doctors just don’t look for it (still). It really has changed my life since learning that I have PCOS. I have embarked on a supplement plan with my naturopath/nutritionist to combat my excess oestrogen and to get my acne under control – how exciting is that?!

    Sorry for the rant – I’m on a one-woman crusade against PCOS. It really is a mother.
    Oh – P.S; exercise is PCOS’ worst enemy so get your running shoes on 😉

    • Tracy says

      Hi Tori,
      I’m happy to hear that that diagnoses has relieved a lot of your stress… it really is amazing to have more of a clear picture of what is wrong so you know where to go from there!

      As for exercise combating PCOS, I’ve really been into this lady’s blog lately http://gokaleo.com/.. she had PCOS and touts the HUGE benefits she’s seen from simply eating a lot of nutrient dense food to balance her energy needs and also doing lots of strength training. She said her PCOS symptoms just went POOF as soon as she started taking exercise seriously. She’s inspiring me to get to the gym! Also, she’s big into speaking about anti-dieting and anti-diet dogma, which is awesome.

    • Melinda says


      I have PCOS also. I was diagnosed 2 years ago and have struggled with weight, acne, hair, moods, etc. Unfortunately I live in a rural community with few “specialists”. The one I was referred to is a gynecologist but he just put me on birth control for treatment — can I just say that it has not improved anything!! And makes me feel horrible! After the first year, I asked him for an alternative because of the lousy feeling and he said I hadn’t given it enough time to work.

      I was wondering if you could tell me what plan and treatment you’ve been using that has been helping you in hopes that I can find success with it also. I would love to be rid of all these issues and off the pill once and for all. Thanks a bunch!!

  5. Autumn says

    Tracy, Do you know if it is safe to take Vitex or Estroblock when you are still on the birthcontrol pill? I wouldn’t want to make things even wackier while on or coming back off of it. Thanks!!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Autumn,
      Good question, and something I didn’t think about when writing the article… it sound like vitex is not advised while taking birth control pills, and DIM is .. kinda iffy, but it sounds like it’s probably not a good idea, since the BCP IS estrogen, and DIM metabolizes that… so it could lower the BCP’s effectiveness. And it doesn’t seem like it really makes any sense from a combating-acne-perspective to take these two things that are kind of like… opposing each other? You’re taking something that breaks down something you are also taking in pill form. If you are planning to get off the pill, I say wait until you have quit, or have started the weaning process.

      • Ness says

        Hiya sorry, I don’t understand in your book it says that you recomend taking DIM on the birth control pill, but I’m confused now, should I take it, sorry if your research had developed since 2012

        • Tracy says

          Sorry Ness, yes this is a confusing comment. I wrote this before I found out from the manufacturers of Estroblock (and other DIM supplement makers) that you can indeed take it on birth control pills and they actually particularly recommend it while on birth control pills

  6. Mandy says

    Hi Tracy,

    I am infected with Helicobacter pylori and I get acne.So,I wanna know will H. pylori causes acne?
    Can eating manuka honey help to solve the problem?
    Thanks a lot!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Mandy,
      Well, often H Pylori and low stomach acid go hand in hand.. and low stomach acid is often correlated with acne because it is the first step in digestion, and if that isn’t working properly, it has this chain effect… you end up not getting the nutrients and minerals that you need for healthy skin. I would say manuka honey would be a good bet to try killing the H. Pylori, and also taking HCL betaine and/or eating fermented foods like sauerkraut before and with meals to help produce stomach acid

  7. Kim says

    Hey Tracy,
    Thanks for the last blog! After reading it And seeing so many comments recommending going grain free and you encouraging me to just give it a shot..i had been seeing a lot of grain and gluten free products, i truly thought it was a lot of hype and all the new rage!
    Ive been doing grain and gluten free for about 10 days so far, and my face does seem to have improved a lot.. Also tried to cut back on a lot of processed food and sugar, which is not always easy!
    I hope i do not have to do this forever and will be able to gradually add in grains again as u have been able to do!:)
    Your face is so clear!
    What do you think about these supplements?! Im thinking of also taking these..http://wellnessmama.com/4621/eat-your-sunscreen/

    • Tracy says

      Hey Kim,
      Interesting! Glad to hear you’re seeing improvements with the no grains!
      As for the supplements in that article… well, I highly recommend the fermented cod liver oil/butter oil (I take that).. and you know… Vitamin C is always good haha. Definitely think coconut oil is an awesome thing to cook with/eat and I eat that every day too. The Astaxanthin is an interesting one… don’t know a lot about it, but I did hear about it and briefly read about it the other day and was intrigued. In my experience, eating healthier has made a huge difference in how much sun I can tolerate before burning… I hate sunscreen, and it would be cool to see if I could ramp it up even more next summer by taking that. I guess we’ll see :)

      • Kim says

        Ok Tracy,
        Thanks so much for the tips! I do have regular cod liver oil at home.. The fermented one is just so frightfully expensive!
        Do you know anyplace i could get it cheaper?

          • Nathan says

            Although this idea doesn’t make the purchase any easier on the wallet, thinking of it more like a ‘food’ than a ‘supplement’ I think it a better approach… To me, when I think of most “I CAN DO THIS, I CAN DO THAT” supplements, I think of old, dusty capsules that aren’t even going to be recognised by my body. However I think that because this ‘supplement’ makes so much sense in both the process involved in creating it, and the benefits of taking it, the price isn’t that bad. I pay around £40 and I think it has 95 servings. Taking it everyday makes it 42 pence a day…. That’s not that bad really.

            I know it is still expensive for just a jar of ‘stuff’, but it’s the one thing that a lot of people seem to me taking these days, esp. people eating Paleo.

  8. Belle says

    Hi Tracy,

    I feel like my acne is a little bit hormonal in that I get breakouts around the time I get my period. I only get breakouts on my forehead though, and never on other parts of my face.

    According to face maps, forehead acne might be due to digestive/liver issues. Would you still recommend Estroblock for me? Or maybe the liv-tox supplement?



    • Belle says

      P.S. Also, I have to admit that I’m really tempted to try estroblock, but also kind of scared/wary of messing with my hormones.

      • Tracy says

        I say give both a try, sounds like they’d both probably help. As for Estroblock.. I know what you mean.. it took me months and months to decide to try it after Fran Kerr recommended it on her site because I was worried about that. With DIM though, it’s not like you are adding hormones to your body – it’s just helping along a process that is going on naturally in your liver… it actually doesn’t really lower estrogen levels that much, it just metabolizes bad estrogens into good estrogens. Over all, I personally think it’s quite a safe supplement to take.

    • Tracy says

      Yep, apparently adrenal fatigue messes with progesterone sensitivity which can lead to estrogen dominance… plus lots of other hormonal issues since the adrenals manufacture so many hormones… so I think getting lots of sleep, lowering stress, exercising (but not super intense overexercising), quitting caffeine you use it, and estroblock would probably help you

  9. Katherine says

    If you get a saliva test done and find that you’re a bit too high in testosterone, I really recommend giving Testo-Quench a try (http://www.douglaslabs.com/product.cfm?litm=99093-90X).

    I’ve noticed quite a difference. Things still aren’t perfect, but it’s definitely a piece of the puzzle for me, and it might be for you. Trying this made me feel for the first time since starting this journey that I’d begun to start making a difference in my skin. I’m also taking a liver cleansing supplement (with turmeric, milk thistle and dandelion) but it’s too soon to tell…but I’m hoping after reading your article that it’ll give the Testo-Quench a boost!

    Just wanted to pass that along for other ladies who might have testosterone as a specific problem :)

    • Tracy says

      Thanks for your suggestion Katherine! That’s really helpful, and I’m glad to hear it’s made a difference in your skin! 😀

    • Cali says

      To Katherine and Tracy, I as well think I have a hormonal imbalance. I got off birth control this past July and my ache has gotten so bad since along with having other symptoms such as fatigue and joint pain. I as well had these symptoms before getting off birth control but not to this extreme. I did have mild ache before but nothing to this extent. I went and got a hormonal test done in October to find out they were normal. I did do a detox the week before that, could that have been the reason for showing up normal?
      Thanks and would really appreciate a response

      • Tracy says

        Hi Cali, what sort of hormone test did you get? Blood test? Sometimes blood tests aren’t that accurate, a saliva test is usually more accurate. It may be the reason it showed up normal? It seems a pattern I’ve noticed with women who have obvious hormonal symptoms, yet their blood tests show up normal, and it doesn’t make sense

  10. maeghan myers says

    Hey Tracy,

    Well I have went through all the things you have talked about on this site and i believe that my acne is hormonal. I was looking into the products you spoke about above but I am on a tight budget so I cant afford them right now. So that is why i wanted to ask you about maca root. I just ordered some from mountain rose herbs. supposedly it is good for balancing hormones naturally, so I was wondering if you know anything about it…? thanks, maeghan

    • Tracy says

      Hi Meghan!
      I know, these supplements can be really expensive, and I must say that is unfortunate. Taking a basic vitex and a milk thistle supplement shouldn’t be too pricey though.

      Maca root… I haven’t really done enough thorough research on it to say .. I know it is often used to balance hormones similar to the way Vitex is used so it might be a good choice. I’ve also heard it can go the other way and create more problems. I think you just need to start off slow with it and don’t start taking a heap of it right off the bat.. start with a small amount and work your way up

      • Natasha Reaney says

        Hi Meghan and Tracy,

        I did the maca root thing for a while, I put it in my smoothies everyday for at least 4 months but unfortunately I did not see a huge difference.

        However, it isn’t too expensive so maybe it’s worth trying yourself!


  11. sarah says

    Hey Tracy,
    I have a quick question on the estroblock or DIM. I have been debating on taking it for awhile, but the only thing stoping me is I’m afraid it will affect my thyroid. I had low grade hypothyroidism about a year and a half ago, and I know it removes bad estrogens, but do you possibly know if it could throw off any other hormones or the thyroid? I did email the company awhile ago, with no response. Also are other brands of DIM just as good as estroblock?
    thanks, your skin looks great!

    • Jas says

      I actually had a similar situation as you Sarah. I was diagnosed with adrenal fatigue and hypothyroidism. I started taking Armour thyroid which didn’t help so I took matters into my own hands. I started taking CanPrev Adrenal Pro, which helps both the thyroid and adrenals. I have been gluten free as well because that has been linked to causing adrenal fatigue which then causes thyroid problems. I have also been taking EstroSense and Vitex and drinking burdock root tea and my skin is so great! I was nervous about messing with my hormones too but I figured they were already messed up so I had nothing to lose! Hope this helps :)

        • Jas says

          I’m glad! CanPrev contains L-Tyrosine which is supposed to be crucial in thyroid health. I know I feel much better and have more energy, but I don’t get my actual levels checked until next year. For me, how I feel is the best indicator, so I would say try it. http://www.nationalnutrition.ca is where I bought it and it’s much cheaper than buying in the store.

          Good luck!

  12. Lindsey says

    Just made my first appointment with a naturopath, and I’m really excited! Tracy, I was wondering if you had any thoughts on NAET? I feel like I read something about it in one of your articles, but can’t remember which….

    • Tracy says

      Hi Lindsey! Oh good, good luck with the naturopath 😀 I didn’t specifically talk about NAET, but I think maybe someone in the comments did… I’ve heard it can be really helpful for eliminating allergies … are you going to get it done?

      • Lindsey says

        I’m not sure…on the naturopath’s website, that was listed as one of the treatments/tests they offer, I’m not sure if they offer any other kind of allergy testing, but if that IS the test they do, I wanted to know your thoughts or the thoughts of other Love Vitamin readers. From what I gathered through a general google search, reviews are mixed.
        I’m really excited though. Never would have thought to do this if not for you and the community you have here!

        • Tracy says

          There’s mixed reviews on all of the “alternative” ways of testing for food sensitivities if you google them. I’m sure none of them are completely accurate (and I can’t personally vouch for any of them), all I know is that getting the vega sensitivity test was really helpful for me .. so hopefully this helps you!!

          • Lindsey says

            Hey, Tracy, thanks for looking that up! Had my naturopath appointment this past weekend, and it was fantastic!!! She’s recommending red clover tincture to help my liver, and a B-vitamin complex with a lotta B-6. We’re gonna see how that works. I’m so happy I went.

  13. Lorena says

    Congratulations Tracy, you’re looking great!

    Several of the supplements that my naturopath has prescribed for me are similar to yours; he also pretty much echoed what you are saying: lower stress and clean up diet and lifestyle. I’ve been working on these things for about a month and am having good results. However my skin is still very congested; I have clogged pores and blackheads. I’m hoping the supplements will help with this; also, I’m using jojoba oil. Do you have any other suggestions? Unfortunately, I have lots of acne scars, and this prevents me from feeling happy about my progress. I’m terrified that I’ll never regain my smooth completion. And there are so many treatments (chemical peels, lasers, microdermabrasion, dermarollers) It’s mind boggling! I’ve been researching tepezcohuite bark which is supposed to be good for scars. Have you heard of it? Anyways, sorry I’ve gone off topic. (BTW, your new e-book is great:-)

    • maeghan myers says

      Hi Lorena,

      I saw that you were talking about scars. I also have them and am using Lavender Essential oil and the results are wonderful! But make sure you buy a high quality brand that is organic or else it is pointless. I got my at Mountain Rose herbs and I have also used the brand aura cacia which is at whole foods.

      Also for me jojoba oil did not work so I use hemp oil. You can also get this at mountain rose herbs. I also take it internally everyday, research about it and you will see it is worth it!
      Mix a little baking soda with water and make a paste, exfoliate with this twice or so a week. find what works for you. it is very gentle on your skin and will help remove those scars! hope this all helps you!!!


      Peace man!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Lorena,
      Well, my forehead was really congested and blocked up with whiteheads a few months ago, but between the jojoba oil and the estroblock etc, my forehead is smooth as a baby’s bottom now. So.. I say just be patient and give it some time and things should smooth out. Also, forget about your scars!! Be HAPPY about your progress. The scars will fade… I know having them sucks, but letting them shed sadness and fear onto the rest of your life is not going to make them go away any faster or change the reality of having them or having acne.. it’s just going to make life suck! Your progress is AMAZING!!! I’m so proud of you!

    • Tracy says

      Well, you can take them both, or just take one, or do whatever you want to do. They are different supplements contributing to the cause, but you might not need to take both

    • Nanco says

      Hi. I thought I’d give an update on my progress. I was getting cystic acne before my period, along with smaller pimples on my temples and cheeks throughout the month. I’ve cut out most gluten and diary, sugar, soy, legumes. I do oil cleansing, and I take fermented cod liver oil, a multi vitamin and probiotics. I started taking burdock, chaste tree (vitex) and calcium d-gluacarate (all advised by naturopath) and didn’t get any cysts last period (but did get a few smaller pimples in the normal places). I ordered Estroblock but I am going to wait another month. I also have milk thistle but the naturopath didn’t think I needed it.
      I love reading about people’s progress on here!

  14. Natasha Reaney says

    Hi Tracy,

    Similar question to Jess, should I be taking 3 supplements then, DIM, Milk Thistle and Burdock Root? Does LivTox have milk thistle in it? Will any milk thistle supplement work?

    I am a little bit confused about what supplements to go for, is Vitex (Gaia brand recommended by Alexis) similar to taking Estroblock/Estroguard? I would prefer to avoid soy if possible. What would you recommend based on your research?

    Do you mind providing a link to the Burdock Root you buy? (My apologies if I just missed the link!)

    Thank you!


    p.s. I am so grateful you have this blog. I have seen some minor results with changing my diet etc. Unfortunately, not the results I have been hoping for but it does make me feel better to know that I am working on healing my skin and my body internally in a natural way. I have been on accutane 3 times, minocyclin, everything, and every time I went off the drugs my acne came back. My acne is concentrated on each side of the lower part of my face (below my lip and on either side of my chin). I really do think hormonal imbalance and liver issues have a lot to do with it. I hope this works!

    • Natasha Reaney says

      Just watched your video, probably should have watched it before I left a comment! I’ll try the Vitex and Estroblock. Would you recommend LivTox over taking milk thistle?


    • Tracy says

      Hi Natasha,
      Well, you can decide for yourself what you want to take. At the minimum I would say take either Dim or Vitex, and either milk thistle (or Liv-tox) or burdock root. Or you can take all four to really pack a punch. I can’t really say which one is going to be more effective for you between vitex and DIM if you just want to pick one. I guess from my personal experience, I would recommend Estroblock since I have seen such amazing results with it, but on the other hand, I haven’t tried Vitex for any significant length of time but often hear of it’s positive results for other women. If you’re worried about soy look into Estroguard (I linked to it in the article), it’s soy free

      Liv-tox does contain milk thistle, as well as artichoke, turmeric, Schisandra, Picrorhiza, and Niruri (all herbs for supporting liver function).

      The brand of burdock root … Alexis said she likes Herb Pharm brand… I got a tincture from the local health food store, the brand is Prairie Doctor

      Anyway! Good luck, I also hope this hormone/liver thing works out for you! 😀

      • Natasha Reaney says

        Hi Tracy!

        So I decided to go with all four to pack a punch! I have been taking the supplements for about 2 weeks now. At first it seemed like it was really working, there seemed to be some really good healing action going on. Only now, I just broke out with a few quite large and painful blemishes.

        Do you know how long it should take to start working? Also, I went to planet organics to buy the milk thistle and burdock root and decided to just buy the DIM and Chasteberry there (different brands from those recommended). I just read a different post of yours where you mentioned that you had been trying an estrogen block/hormone balancer (I think it was DIM) but it wasn’t Estroblock and it wasn’t working. In your experience, have the supplement brands made a difference? Anyone else have any thoughts on this?

        Thank you!


        • Tracy says

          Hi Natasha,
          I wouldn’t worry yet, the road to recovery is not always smooth… give it some time. If you saw improvement to begin with that’s a good sign. As for the DIM – yes, it does seem that there is a difference between cheap DIM and high end supplements like Estroblock or Estroguard, as they are made with higher quality ingredients that get absorbed better… from what I know anyway. And a lot of people need a pretty high dose of even the good quality ones to see benefit (like I needed three pills a day).. So yeah, it’s hard to say if the DIM you are using is worthwhile or not, I don’t know!

  15. Kayla says

    Hey Tracy!
    I’ve been following your blog for quite some time since it’s the only reliable source I can count on. I’ve had acne ever since I started my period. It was cyclic acne around my chin. I spent thousands of dollars on an esthetician and it did clear up 2 years ago for a few months. When I went traveling to visit some relatives, I forgot my face wash and used drugstore products. Ever since then my acne has returned and with a vengeance. All over my cheeks, temples and between my eyebrows are where I have it worst. I’ve been doing the caveman regiem for a few months but it makes no difference. I eat healthy most of the time and exercise a good amount during the week. My stress level has been pretty high though but is it enough to cause this much damage all over my face? I know this seems like a lengthy note but I
    f you could help me to get my self confidence back you don’t understand how grateful I’d be. Im 19 and just about to start college. clear skin would mean me being able to finally come out of my shell. Thanks for all your help and great posts

    • Tracy says

      Hi Kayla, yes for some people stress is definitely the biggest thing with the acne… stress can be so much more harmful than people give it credit for. Work on lowering that as best you can, and maybe try the other suggestions in this article too?

      • Kayla says

        I never knew it could be such a big problem. I’ll try working to reduce it thank you. And can you purchase these products in most natural health food stores such as whole foods or do I have to go through the Web? it’s great you reply so quickly! Much appreciated! :-)

  16. J says

    I took vitex four years ago, but not for acne, it was to come off of depo BC which I will never use again, as depo gave me months of non-stop bleeding. After only a couple weeks on vitex, I got a normal cycle, and on the next cycle I conceived my first baby girl :)
    It didn’t do anything for my acne, but reading about the different supplements here, it makes sense because I’ve always felt as though my acne was more closely related to my thyroid, bad/imbalances estrogens and my liver than my pituitary.
    I’m having a physical done on the 8th, and I’ve had hormonal blood work done before, but I’m going to request another one to determine if I have a dangerously overactive thyroid (as I know it’s overactive, but it may be moreso than I should be living with). I’ll turn to natural remedies if that’s the case, as I refuse to be on prescriptions for the rest of my life. I might even try this estroblock stuff if the diagnosis calls for it. I’ll keep ya posted! Thanks, Tracy. You look great!

    • Tracy says

      Ah, interesting! Thanks for sharing your experience with Vitex. I’m so happy for you that it regulated your cycle and allowed you to get pregnant with a beautiful baby! 😀
      Anyway – yes, if you feel the acne is estrogen/liver related, the Estroblock should definitely help. Good that you’re getting some tests done though, that’s always the smarter way to go! haha

  17. J says

    I know thyroid activity can change significantly 6 months after giving birth, and it’s been 14 months since my second daughter and I am still losing weight fast. I had hormone testing after my first girl, (without insurance….eek!) But not for my thyroid, just androgen levels and everything came back within the normal range. But now that I have health insurance, I wanna make use of it! And I’ve had really heavy, painful cycles since my last birth, so I wanna get to the route of all of this. I’ve implemented several tips you’ve given with amazing results (no dairy, jojoba oil, omega 3s, stop picking), but lately I’ve had terrible breakouts canvassing below the jaw on both sides of my face :( sounds hormonal to me!
    I love reading your blogs! You’re an inspiration and steadily changing my life! :) Thanks, Tracy.

  18. Sara says

    Hi Tracy.
    Thank you so much for this wonderful post.
    I definitely think my acne is hormonal. I’ve had acne since the age of 12, and I’ve been battling it since. The only time I had close to perfect skin, was when I was on the pill called microgynon 30 (made of Ethinylestradiol which is a synthetic version of oestrogen and levonorgestrel, a synthetic form of progesterone.)
    Since I came of it, absolute disaster. My face went back to what it was before. clogged, congested, with breakouts especially on my jawline/chin, and huge pores on my cheeks.
    So based on what you wrote:
    – if I take vitex and drink burdock root-milk thistle tea, will my skin improve.
    – if I take estroguard, will it mimic the effect of microgynon on my skin. Or better yet, is there a way to naturally get what is in the pill in its syntetic form?
    – Finally, I wanted to know if estroguard/DIM/Vitex will have contraceptive effect. I would like to try for a baby in the near futur, and do not want to take anything that will act as a contraceptive (this is why I came off the pill in the 1st place).
    Thanks you so much, and keep up the great work

    • Tracy says

      Hi Sara,
      1) I can’t make any guarantees whatsoever that this combinations of supplements is going to do anything for you and your skin – but hopefully it will! That’s the plan anyway.

      2) Estroblock or Estroguard won’t mimic the effect of the birth control pill, it’s just going to help you get your natural estrogen levels back in balance. Hopefully this will help you skin look as good as it did on birth control pills.

      3) No, they don’t have contraceptive effect.. if anything, it’s the opposite… getting your natural hormones in balance is only going to help you conceive. (although I don’t think you’re supposed to take Vitex past the first trimester if you do get pregnant, and apparently there isn’t much that is known about taking DIM while pregnant so it might best be avoided once you do get your little bun in the oven)

  19. amy says

    omgosh i am so so so happy for you! you look so great! (not that you always haven’t lol) i’ve been seeing a medicinal herbalist and have felt so much better since, herbs are really amazingly powerful – also you probably feel less stressed because all your hormones are more balanced now, so generally your whole body will be too

  20. Ale says

    Hi Tracy!

    I’m sorry to hijack this post of yours with a -relatively- unrelated question, but I figured if I posted in your last article there would be a higher chance to be answered. I’m also sorry about the length of this comment, I just don’t want to leave any detail out.

    A little background, I’m a 22 years old male with no really a big acne problem. Just a oily T-zone, but not a lot of oil. For some years I’ve been getting the occasional pimple on my forehead, usually 1 or 2 every week – or every two weeks. But in the last months I’ve got some pimples on my nose -front and wings-, so I decided to do something about it. I should note that, although I did not get a single pimple on my nose until three months ago (I wonder why??), I did have blackheads since I remember. I’ve also got a few pimples (most of them red without white head) under the eyes, next to the nose. Related to this post: do you think this could be an indication of a wrongly functioning liver or other organ?

    Long story short, last week I tried a couple things on my skin, and although results are not really that unexpected, it’s making me get a little worried.

    What I did was a sugar-lemon-EVOO (I later discovered that the olive oil maybe wasn’t THAT extra virgin) scrub twice, on Monday and Wednesday. I also used a honey mask, I may have used it 5 times tops, but I remember using it on Saturday morning, night, and on Sunday morning. I also remember that the first time I used it was after the Wednesday scrub. It was not manuka honey, it was -allegedly, but I’m starting to doubt- raw honey. And this is where it all started.

    I know, because I’ve read it, that at first when you use honey on your skin you go through a “purging” phase, when you are more likely to break out a little. And I did get the initial breakout, ESPECIALLY in my nose (I don’t remember if I got the same kind of acne on my forehead). English is not my first language, but I think you call those something like postules: those red spots with a white head. Well, the break outs in my nose where really really tiny, not like my previous ones, and they developed the white head really quickly, or at least they developed it quickly after becoming red (maybe they were below the surface before and I didn’t notice).

    My last application of the honey mask was on Sunday morning. I didn’t broke out a lot since the first few, but I notice that my skin is VERY VERY OILY. Three to four hours after I cleanse it, and with the right light, you can literally see tiny oil drops or oil bumps on the pores. If I’m hit by direct light my nose and forehead shine a lot. I wonder if this is normal. This may sound like a stupid question, but as someone who has not struggled with severe acne, I don’t really know. Is the initial breakout from honey only because the toxins it is flushing, or is it accompanied by an overproduction of the oil glands?

    I’ve not yet had a -noticeably at least- diminished production of oil, especially on my nose, although I’ve been watching my diet, cutting bad fats and sugar: except for honey, damn delicious thing. But honey didn’t broke me out before, nor did it make me produce more oil (when I ate it). It has been almost a week since my last application. It may have lowered a bit on my forehead, but I’m not sure what should I expect? Will the

    Since Tuesday night I’ve been using aloe vera gel (extracted directly from my plant) on the forehead and the nose. On the forehead I leave it overnight, on the nose I wash it after 10-20 mins (I wanted to be sure it didn’t broke me out in the forehead before using it on the nose)

    I remind you that I also used a sugar-lemon-olive oil scrub twice, so maybe it’s also contributing to the overproduction of oil?

    I should mention that I’ve been regularly using a salicylic acid bar cleanser, and since monday night I’ve been using benzoyl peroxide on my nose, and wash it of the next morning. This means that I’ve been using the salicylic acid way before I got so oily, and I started to use the benzoyl peroxide after the face got oily, so I don’t think they contribute too much.

    Thank you for your time

    • Tracy says

      Hi Ale,
      Hmm well… what were you using before you got this new acne on your nose and using all this stuff? I think you should just go back to that or just stop using everything completely… using too many things and switching between them and getting anxious about all of this probably isn’t helping (it’s not, it’s making you more oily!), I know you feel like you want to do something and put something on your skin, but I doubt it’s helping that much

      • Ale says

        Well, yes I suppose I should do that once my skin stops getting so oily. What I’m asking is if it is normal to get an over production of oil after the first applications of honey, and if I can expect it to go away. As I said, my skin wasn’t so oily before the honey. Is the “initial breakout” supposed to be accompanied with this production of oil, or are they just pimples that seem to get out of nowhere?

        • Tracy says

          hmm I wouldn’t say it’s normal to get oilier, no (I mean specifically due to the honey). Sometimes messing with your face, and washing it and drying it out can create more oil because your skin wants to overcompensate. Are you washing your face more than you were before?

          • Ale says

            No, I’m not washing it more, just twice a day. Now that you mention it, I have a question. People say that you shouldn’t wash your face more than twice a day, but what about the shower? That would be another water splash. What if you wear a mask and then have to take it of? Another one. If you use a toner that you have to take of after a few mins, that’s another one.

            What I’ve noticed is that my skin has become a little irritated, and maybe that’s why it’s producing more oil. I’ve been using aloe vera to treat it, leaving it overnight on the forehead and washing it off after 10 mins in the nose. Unsurprisingly, I’ve noticed a diminished production of oil in the forehead, and not so much in the nose. Maybe that’s why.

            It’s just that the overproduction of oil happened to coincide in time with my honey usage. Have you heard of an initial breakout or purgin phase when you start using honey?

    • Tracy says

      I don’t know, there haven’t really been any studies on its effects on pregnancy and breast feeding, so I’m not sure the answer on that one

    • Nanco says

      I am breastfeeding and going to a naturopath in two weeks. I’m going to ask about vitex, milk thistle, etc. and can let people know what I’m told.

  21. Ericka says

    Tracy! What a great article and I’m glad you’ve found relief for your skin. I’m in the same boat you were once in. After keeping up with lifestyle and diet changes for almost a year I went from severe acne to mild… which is great but I have to really watch diet to keep my skin consistently mild to clear.

    I’ve seen a naturopath months ago and had my hormones checked. They were all within normal range with no dominance. My naturopath told me even though they are within range they may be out of balance with one another. I do notice I break out around my chin and jawline area often. Since I’m not technically estrogen dominant would you recommend Estroblock/DIM for me? I would love to try it but I don’t want to mess things up hormone wise! Thanks and lots of love.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Ericka,
      How come she wasn’t able to tell from your results whether they were not in balance with each other? isn’t that something she should be able to see if she had the levels? (I’m just curious, I have no idea how the interpretation of the testing works). Anyway… I think DIM is probably worth a shot… I mean after all, your estrogen levels might be in range, but you might have a lot more bad estrogens than good estrogens

      • Ericka says

        You know, I’m not sure! My paperwork shows a number range for each hormone and then my number results for each… And my number results all fell within the normal range for each hormone. I thought it was strange for her to make that comment too. Maybe more testing needs to be done to find out my exact levels? I’m not sure. I think I may have to give DIM a try though. Thanks Tracy!

  22. Andrea says

    Just a heads up about DIM. I had been taking shatavari, which is a phytoetrogen, but also claims to help balance female hormones in the ayrvedic tradiction, and it was really helping my migraines. Since I still had acne though, I went off it and started the DIM, which I thought would be better for my hormones and help both the acne and miraines. BAM! Migraine after migraine. Now, I could be wrong, but if something is balancing your hormones, I can’t imagine that it would cause such terrible hormonal symptoms. So, I can understand why one might think that it’s fairly risk free, but my experience leads me to believe that it could actually have harmful effects. There might be some danger in assuming that just because you’re a female with adult acne, that it’s necessarily estrogen dominance.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Andrea, thanks for sharing your experience with it! I know it’s not going to work for everyone – it really is best if you can get a saliva hormone test and get prescribed supplements by some kind of professional… because it’s definitely true that not all adult acne is caused by estrogen dominance, but many times it is… how long did you take it and what brand of DIM were you using?

      • Andrea says

        I used Nature’s Way Plus. I took it for 3 or 4 weeks. Once my period came the migraines started and didn’t stop for almost 2 weeks, until I stopped taking it and started the shatavari again. I didn’t mean to imply that you were saying estrogen dominance is the only cause of adult acne, I just wanted to add some warning, since everywhere I look, even here, that is mostly what is suggested.

        Who knows, maybe it would have eventually cleared my skin, it certainly didn’t get worse while I was on it, but it wasn’t worth crippling daily migraines.

        Who knows, maybe I even have estrogen dominance, but need lots of estrogen to keep my migraines at bay. I know when I was pregnant with my son, by the time I got into my 2nd and 3rd trimesters, my skin was perfect and my migraines were gone. Estrogen and progesterone are supposed to be sky high at that point. I have tried everything for my migraines which had been becoming worse and worse, and the shatavari is the first thing I’ve tried, natural or otherwise, that has given me some respite.

        I might someday have my hormones tested, but I’m not at all certain that those tests are reliable. It seems many people with terrible issues have these tests done and are told there is absolutely nothing wrong with them.
        Mainstream medical doctors often cause more harm than good–very few have ever helped me. However, I may have an even more dismal view of naturopaths. I think they’re mostly charlatans whose methods are not based on sound science and often achieve results through placebo.

        Wow, this all sounds really negative, and I’m really not a negative person in general. I guess because I try to be so objective, it sometimes appears that way :)

  23. Anna says

    Well done! You sure deserve having such beautiful skin after all you’ve done :)
    I did pretty good I guess after about 5 months but I decided not to worry too much about what I was eating this christmas (it would’ve made me too unhappy) and started eating pretty normal food (still dairy-free) and then my skin started breaking out and is now worse than ever. So now I’ve cancelled my plans for new years just to keep me from having anything like sugar or alcohol ( and keeps me from showing myself in public) I know it’s pathetic but I’d just feel worse about the acne if I’d go out. What do you suggest I do? I’m too scared of eating what I want, meeting people or just going to school (where all the stress is). I used to love going out for a beer with friends but I have to say no every single time they ask these days and have been staying home every friday for 5 months now.. It’s starting to drive me crazy. I imagine you’ve felt the same way? SO, any suggestions? (thanks for a great blog!)

    • Tracy says

      Hi Anna, I’m sorry to hear this backfired on you! My suggestion is to just bite the bullet and get tested for food sensitivities… then you know which foods might be causing it and you can stop living in fear of the unknown. Also, over Christmas when you ate what you wanted… did you actually ENJOY the food? Or were you just stressed out and worrying about it the whole time? Because that can make a big difference. You really need to work on the stress. I know that suggestion isn’t that helpful because you know that, but honestly… go out with your friends!! Five months!! I know acne is embarrassing, and yes I’ve totally been there, but the truth is that nobody cares except you… your friends just want to hang out with you and spend time with you… they don’t care if you have acne. Hiding away is so stressful and it’s really not making the situation better!

  24. Betty says


    My friend is 24. She has had problems with acne since early teens. For the past two years or so, it has changed to small white hard bumps that they say LOOK like milia, but are not. Estheticians that looked at her could not identify. She is lactose intolerant, and her mother and aunt and uncle had severe acne but it (mostly) went away in their early 20’s. She IS on oral contraceptives which are not helping. Any ideas?? When her face is red, it looks like her top layer of skin has been stretched over a blanket of tiny hard bumps. She went through a LOT of dermatologist treatments that did not work for her. We have not found any photos that look like her “bumps”. She does have some “pimples” that come and go, but these are there all the time.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Betty! I’m sorry I can’t really tell what she has.. I can’t see it lol! It sounds like rosacea, but if you haven’t been able to find any pictures that match it, I don’t know what to say. Has she seen a doctor or dermatologist? I’m not really a big fan of either in treating skin problems, but they do a good job of diagnosing them at least

    • Tracy says

      Hi Arjay, unfortunately you have to order it online, even in North America… there’s no other way to get it as far as I know (maybe through a naturopath or something). And shipping on it is really expensive… it’s super annoying.

  25. Kassondra says

    Hi Tracy,

    I’ve been reading your blog for a while now, but haven’t commented before, so hi :) Thanks for all the great info you give here at The Love Vitamin.

    After reading this post and doing some other research I ordered myself some EstroBlock and LivTox. I’m in the midst of improving my diet and using all natural products, but a lot of my acne is around the chin and jawline, which makes me believe it could be hormonal. But I do feel a little apprehensive about taking the EstroBlock. I know it is natural and should help everything regulate and such, but will this have any dangerous/lasting side effects on my body, particularly my cycle? Particularly on my ability to get pregnant? I am not planning on having kids for probably another five years or so, but still, I just want to be cautious. Because if I had to choose between children and clear skin, I’d have to pick the children!

    I’ve read some of the other comments here and have found them reassuring, but I just wanted to specifically ask for any further opinion you may have on this. I know this is natural, but words like “estrogen” and “blocker” and “inhibitor” all make me a little apprehensive about what I could be doing to my body and my natural cycle.

    Again, thanks so much for all the time and effort you put into this whole project. It is so helpful to have people like you out there who care enough about this issue to help other people work through it.

    Happy New Year!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Kassondra,

      Well, from my understanding of it, it blocks BAD estrogens, and increases good estrogens… it’s supposed to balance your hormones which would only help you get pregnant, not prevent that.

      But then again, you have to remember I’m just a person on the internet doing her best, but I’m not a doctor or naturopath, so I’m proud of you for being skeptical and asking questions… NOBODY should just take my advice or anyone else’s advice on the internet without doing lots of your own research… I do my best to give good information, but I’m only a flawed human and I can’t be responsible if things don’t go as planned with anything I recommend. I hope it won’t, but … you know.

      … if it makes you feel any better, my naturopath did prescribe me DIM way back in the day before the word DIM meant anything to me, so that tells me it’s pretty safe (from my point of view). If you are worried I would contact the Delgado Protocol who are the people who make it.

      • Kassondra says

        Thanks for your input, Tracy. That is reassuring. I’ll continue to look into a bit more on my own and make my decision from there :)


  26. Lindsey says

    thanks so much for posting this! After learning that I think I have hormonal acne I was left feeling kinda hopeless because of hearing that anything topical doesn’t really clear it up! In a small way I gave up…but always get inspired when I come to your page!!! After breaking out horrible around Christmas, I came to your page for some fresh inspiration and realized that I haven’t been taking care of myself as I should. So thats what Im doing and I’m going to the health store today to pick these supplements up! I’m super stoked and can’t wait to post the results! thanks so much Tracy, blesssings upon blessings to you!!!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Lindsey!
      Yay, glad to hear I’m inspiring you to get back on track :)
      Be ware that if you are after Estroblock, you have to order it online.. it isn’t carried in stores. The rest of them you should be able to get in any health store

  27. Kayla says

    Have you ever heard of anyone using Red Clover supplement to help with hormonal balance? I just picked some up the other day and I was torn between that and Vitex, and then you wrote this post haha

    • Tracy says

      Oh, actually, yes I have – I forgot about that one. Sounds like it’s a blood cleanser like burdock root? I don’t know that much about it though to make too many comments on it, and I don’t know if you can take them together. I’m not saying vitex is better than red clover, I just don’t know that much about it yet.

    • Lindsey says

      I went to see a naturopath for the first time last week for what I suspected was hormonal acne, and Red Clover Supreme tincture is what she recommended to me. From what research I did online and from what the naturopath told me, it helps a sluggish or overwhelmed liver detoxify your body, including bad estrogens, and will help to regulate hormones. She also recommended a B-vitamin complex with high B-6 to me, just until things improve. It’s got good reviews!

      • Lindsey says

        I should also mention that I had been taking Nature’s Way Vitex 3 times a day because I had just kept reading about how wonderful it is, and I experienced a REALLY bad breakout fairly quickly. She told me to discontinue the vitex for now, it might be too strong for my system. So I’m assuming the red clover might be a bit gentler. Keep in mind that these herbs and supplements are POWERFUL, even though they come from plants. I asked about milkthistle for my liver and the naturopath immediately said milkthistle is very strong, I’d probably experience an acne flare-up, so to stick with the red clover and vit B for now.

  28. kelsey says

    Hey Tracy! I ended up going to a doctor to get my hormones tested (I’m on thyroid medication and I had to get that rechecked) and after suspecting my acne my be hormonal I thought is finally get some answers. I see here you talk mostly of estrogen, and my estrogen levels came back in the normal range (normal is 50-100 and mine was 62.3). But my progestorone came back very low (normal is 5-20 and mine was 0.5) . She suggested a progesterone cream but I don’t want to mess with them if I could take a suppliment or herb that could help balance them naturally. Do you have a suggestion on what I could do? Do you think this low level would be causing my acne, or is estrogen the one to worry about with acne? I appreciate your help and all you do!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Kelsey,
      Good for you for getting your hormones tested :) Yes, if you have low progesterone, then it means that your body is still estrogen dominant because even though estrogen is in range, it’s all about it’s ratio to your progesterone levels.

      I think vitex would be the best supplement for you.. you can probably take estroblock too. Vitex seems to work on your pituitary gland so it naturally produces more of its own progesterone (instead of adding synthetic progesterone). Estroblock doesn’t really lower estrogen levels, just converts the bad estrogens to good estrogens, which could still be a problem for you even if the estrogen is in the normal range. I say start with Vitex though, and take it for a good few months (apparently it takes two to three months to really work at its full capacity).

      • Kelsey says

        Ohh ok, I see! Thank you so so much! I was really wanting to hear your opinion before putting more hormones into my body. I will try out the Vitex for sure!
        Thanks again!! You’re the best!

  29. Stacey says

    This is a great article and perfect timing! I have been taking Vitex, Dim, and progesterone cream for about 9 months with improvment slowly. I have pcos, so this is why I suspect it is taking so long to balance. I want to take the burdock root as I have blood clots from B.C. but I am worried about a relapse. Did you have any inital breakouts from taking liver/blood cleansing pills? I was thinking of just taking the dosing slowly and working my way up. Thanks!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Stacey,
      Personally I didn’t have any relapse breakouts, but it’s not to say that couldn’t happen. Starting off slow with them is a really good idea!

  30. Nathan says

    Tracy, what is your current “skincare” routine? Are you still on the caveman? How long between splashing your face with water?

    I’ve just come to the conclusion, that I need to do more for my skin externally. I’m on day 3 of a sugar detox and although it might help, I just feel miserable :(. Not in the sense that ” I NEED CANDY NOW” but the emotional side of further restricting my food intake. I feel like giving up right now because it is causing too much stress. (I loved your candida cleanse which I did for 7 weeks, but even after than my skin wasn’t great). I think that the main point of this detox right now is to reset myself to real meals and real food, so I think that I can still do that with fruit and ‘healthy treats’ like cocoa cinnamon kale chips which I love!

    I’ve also looked into digestive healing for which I’ve had poor digestion since last summer really (I know that gluten has shot my digestive tract)… I’ve ordered magnesium supplements, enema kit (yuk) and a liver detox supplement. I’m also really considering sauerkraut. (But I’d like to buy it… is that OK as long as it has been stored in the fridge?)

    Thanks for your help! I love your latest video too! It seems that a few Paleo people have also made similar statements.

    • Tracy says

      Yep, I’m still on the caveman… I don’t really splash my face at all… sometimes a little water gets on it when I was my hair but that’s about it. As for sauerkraut… as long as it’s supposed to be a live unpasteurized sauerkraut and is refrigerated, it’s cool. Bubbie’s a good brand, but I donno what you have in the UK

      • Nathan says

        That’s the brand I remember hearing about! Unfortunatley it doesn’t seem to be in the UK.

        I’m thinking about using carrots and ginger instead of cabbage for this time around (my first sauekraut made me vomit. literally


        Plus I don’t really want to be eating too much FODMAP foods if I’m trying to heal my Digestive tract.

        Have a great day :)

  31. Kamila says

    Hey Tracy I tried reading this article in the little time I have a work and probably missed a lot but a quick question I was wonder on your number 1. thing “Use a Supplement – Either DIM, Vitex, or Both”

    is that the same as the Liv-Tox you remcommended or something different

    • Tracy says

      Nope that’s in addition to DIM or Vitex.. I’d suggest giving the article a good read over when you have more time Kamila :)

  32. Maria says

    Hi Tracy,

    Great article, as always!

    I just started using DIM and Calcium d-glucarate together. Been on it for three weeks, so it is too early to tell whether it is helping or not. Anyway, after reading your article, and doing my own research, I got really interested in the Burdock Root. I’ll might switch the Calcium d-glucarate with the Burdock. Or do you think I can use all 3 of them together? Or maybe that will be just to much?

    Have a great day! :)

  33. Maria says

    Great, thanks! Are you also doing the “ten days on and three days off”? Are you planning on taking Burdock, Milk Thistle and DIM for the long run? Also, are you supposed to use Burdock for more than 3 months?

    Thank you for responding so quickly! You look absolutely amazing!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Maria,
      Well with the burdock I was doing ten on and three off but I’ve gone off the burdock now after a month or so, because I got lazy with taking it! My skin seems to be doing fine without it. But I’m still taking the DIM and the Liv-tox (both of which I’m not doing the three days off, but maybe with the liv-tox I should be). I’m thinking of maybe cutting back on the DIM to two pills per day now to see if I can lower the dose and maybe even begin weaning off it.

  34. Robyn says

    Hi Tracy!
    I’ve been following you for around six months now… I started with your candida cleanse and have since stopped eating dairy probably 97% percent…. I really struggle with my diet . I’m pretty sure I have hormonal acne. It’s always on my jawline and around my mouth and is often cystic. I’ve been getting worse instead of better lately and about three weeks ago I started on milk thistle and a dim supplement but am still breaking out quite badly. I’m just wondering if you have any advice. I’m on the verge of asking my doctor to put me on accutaine which I know is awful as I was on it once in my teens but I am just struggling so much. At 29 years old I really want to find a solution. I feel this has been holding me back so much and I seem to have spent a small fortune on trying to get clear. Any advice would be awesome! Also I do exercise regularly and my diet is not perfect but loads better than a year ago
    Cheers! -robyn

    • Tracy says

      Hi Robyn,
      Sorry to hear things aren’t going that well! What type of DIM are you taking and how much? If it’s not a good supplement and you aren’t taking enough of it it won’t be absorbed well… I guess I should mention that I took a not-as-good brand of DIM only taking one or two per day before trying estroblock, and it did nothing. In the end though, I know you don’t want to spend more money but if you really want to know what your hormones are doing you will need to get a saliva hormone test done that will actually tell you. And of course, there could be a dietary factor.. like you could be sensitive to something that you aren’t aware of, so a food sensitivity test might be a good idea too. If you are willing to do anything before Accutane, I think doing these two things would really really help you figure out what is going on and actually get rid of your acne.

      • Robyn says

        The DIM I’m taking is estrosmsrt plus by Lorna vanderhaeghe….. When I researched them online it seemed to be a good one. Have you heard of it before?

        • Tracy says

          Hi Robyn,
          No I hadn’t heard of it… I just looked it up and it looks like a good supplement, but it’s hard for me to objectively say. Like for example, Estroblock says they are different because of the quality of their ingredients that make it up to 500% more absorptive than other brands. so.. yeah :) I don’t know how they compare, but if you did lots of research than you probably know more about it than I!

  35. Kate says

    Hi! Just wanted to see if anyone knows of a store in the US where I can get Estroblock.

    I’ve been taking it for a few months now…4 caps a day plus Nature’s Way Liver supplement. They seem to be doing wonders. However- if I miss a day of the Estroblock my skin freaks out again. I ordered some from amazon but they won’t arrive until next Thursday so I’m trying to see if I can find them anywhere. I thought I saw it in whole foods not too long ago but I can’t find them again.

    thank you Tracy for this article! Really great info :)

    • Tracy says

      Hi Kate,
      As far as I know, I don’t think you can get it in stores. But I might be wrong. It sucks to hear that if you forget to take it even for one day that you break out! The hope is that after you take it long enough that your body has detoxified its stores of bad estrogens and changed the balance in your body enough from the bads to the goods, that you will be able to wean off it. I just started cutting back to two a day after taking three a day for over 5 months (never forgetting a day, imagine that!!)… I’m hoping maybe to get to one per day or none and keep the results… we’ll see

      • Kate says

        I hope I won’t have to keep taking 4/day to keep good results. I had been taking 2 per day and that didn’t work- so I upped to 3 per day and didn’t get results but the 4 per day I’ve been doing for about 2 weeks (knock on wood) seems to do the trick.

        Part of me wishes I didn’t check to see how much more I had left in my bottle because I’m sure the stress of knowing I won’t have any for three days doesn’t help. But life will go on :)

        thanks again Tracy!

  36. Kiara says

    Hello Tracy,

    My name is Kiara and Im from Puerto Rico. (sorry for my writing in english ..I have to work more on it).
    I have been struggling with acne since Im in fourth grade!!.. I’ve tried EVERYTHING.. I almost got prescribe accutane. I say almost because the day before the appointment my dad stopped me. He doesnt believe in medications..he is a vegan. I was diagnosed with Polycystic ovary syndrome. The gynecologist put me in different birth control pills but nothing happened!One year ago my dad convinced me to go to a naturopathy and they put me in a vegan diet.. (im currently on it).I’ve been drinking different herbs ..for the pituitary gland, another herb is to regulate my menstrual cycle & to treat some ovarian cysts. I also drink lysine(for my immune system, kelp, Zinc , calcium, magnesium & B6. And not to forget I use a Natural Progestorone Cream 3 times a day.. I use for my face too.
    Despite being almost a year in treatment I still have a lot of cystic acne (chin area and the sides of my face mostly). Sometimes my face clears a little bit but then it gets worse. I currently use for my face.. tea tree oil, zinc cream (margarite zinc cream), natural witch hazel as a toner and the progesterone cream. (I dont put this on my face at the same time.. sometimes I dont use the witch hazel etc)
    What do you recommend or suggestions in my case… :S

    • Tracy says

      Hi Kiara,
      Have you tried exercise? like strength/weight training? I suggest checking out this lady… her name is Amanda Rodgers and she’s awesome. She healed her PCOS with a real foods diet (not vegan, just a well balanced whole foods diet with real food), and exercise, and that’s it. That could potentially be the missing piece of the puzzle for you: http://www.gokaleo.com/

      • Kiara says

        Hello Tracy,

        I do exercises regularly almost everyday. I lost 28 pounds already. I’m considering traveling to the U.S. or some other place to seek opinions. Do you know of any good naturopath or have heard ?

        • Tracy says

          Interesting, I’m not sure what to suggest! And sorry I don’t have any specific naturopath to suggest… although there is an ebook called PCOS Unlocked that might really help you.. the one I mentioned in this article. There’s an ad for it in my sidebar on the right

  37. Kiara says

    Sorry to comment again ,, I just remember something else.. .I detox regularly (laxative) .. I use a tea made of “senna leafs”

  38. Rebecca says

    Hi Tracey, I wrote to you last night not sure if you got my message. I have been tAking DIM for almost 2 months now and have not seen an improvement. I have been bcp free for almost 8 months now and have been doing everything I can to avoid breaking out diet,exercise,Chinese medicine, naturopath. My acne isn’t bad it never has been I probably get about 2 -3 pimples are week but they are deep. And it gets worse right before my period. I have had the hormone test done about 4 months ago where I was low in progesterone, high in testosterone and high in bad estrogens. Which is why I thought estrogen dominance was my issue. The brand of DIM I am taking in natures way. I have just ordered the retro lock triple strength. I live in Australia so it’s supper expensive to have it shipped out. So I guess I Willa have to see if there is any improvement in the next month. 1 positive thing I realized wAs my nose and forhead haven’t been getting as oily as I would Normally wake up of a morning and they would feel oily. So I hope that’s a sign of it to be working and the break outs slow down soon!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Rebecca,
      I didn’t get your email, not sure why. Well as far as I know, Estroblock is super high absorption and some people find they really don’t get results until they take 3 or even 4 estroblocks per day. So I don’t know if Nature’s Way really compares… hopefully Estroblock does something for you, because I know the shipping is horrendous to Australia. It’s horrendous to Canada too.
      Anyway… have you thought about maybe taking vitex as well? Vitex helps to naturally raise your progesterone levels, so it sounds like both these supplements would help you.
      Where did you get the hormone test done? Was it through a naturopath? Did they not tell you what to do with the results?

    • kristina says

      hi Rebecca I also live in Australia and have acne. I have a lot of digestive issues and endometriosis. Can you recommend a good naturopath.? im from the blacktown area and grew up in Beverly hills

  39. Rebecca says

    I was taking estroblock and then Natures way when I ran out. It states on the bottle enhanced absorption so it should be doing something. I will give it another 4 weeks as u have said it took you 3 months. I will try and be patient : ) yes I had it done at my naturopath – saliva test. I was given progestralift which is meant to encourage ur body to make its own progesterone. I tried that for 3 months with no change in my skin as well as estrofactors which has lots of herbs – turmeric,b6,rosemary etc. I have some progesterone cream I got I just haven’t used it yet as I wanted to see if the dim itself would solve it. I am just scared to play around with my hormones to much when I know they are still recovering post bcp. I have also started to see a Chinese dermatologist and have been on herbs for about 7 weeks the same time I started the dim. But like I said I have noticed less oily skin in the last couple of days so let’s hope it’s a good sign. I will do some research on vitex and chat to my naturopath to see what she thinks. I will keep u posted if there is any change. Thanks heaps Tracey. Your a star : )

  40. Sara lee says

    Hi Tracy, I was just wondering if these supplements are safe to take for long term.. Is it ok to take them for years? Also I drink herbal teal composed of burdock and vitex instead of taking them as pills. Are teas effective as supplements? thank you Tracy for your information!!!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Sara Lee,
      Well, to be honest, I don’t know the answer to that and that’s why I didn’t address it. I think they are okay to take long term, but on the other hand, I think supplements like this are best to take in order for them to do a certain thing (correct an imbalance) and then you shouldn’t need them anymore. However, I don’t know how long it would take before you don’t need them anymore. As you see, Alexis recommends three months on them .. and actually I think she said to use them until your cycle is normal and your skin is clear. I don’t know if that applies to DIM or what. In the end, I’m not sure. I’m starting to try lowering my dose of Estroblock to see what happens.

  41. says

    Hi Tracy! Thankyou for writing this article! Even though switching to a whole foods diet and cutting out gluten over a year ago has vastly improved my quality of life (like no more migraines, body aches, and brain fog, yay!) I still do suffer from cyclical hormonal acne. I thought it was just my misfortune since I refuse to go on the birth control pill, but not anymore thanks to you! I’m going to start taking some of these supplements for sure. I’m so excited to get my hormones in check but I know that doing so will only lead to a more fertile version of me which is not exactly ideal, lol, not really ready to have a baby yet! (I’m 18) But I do know that a fertile woman is a healthy woman and I’m not about to purposefully ignore this advice just because of that. I think I may get the copper IUD.

    Anyway, I’m a little torn about which hormone regulating supplement to take! I know any of the ones you mentioned in the article is probably better than nothing but could you possibly elaborate on why you chose estroblock over estroguard and vitex? I know the differences between the three but I’m still torn!

    P.S. My, your skin is looking B-E-A-Utiful!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Kaitlyn.
      Well, I tried Estroblock because it was Fran from HighonHealth.org who said this was the best supplement for hormonal acne and it’s a big part of what basically cured her from acne, she said. Now I know that just because it worked for her, didn’t mean it would work for me, so I resisted trying it for a long time… but I finally was like… i’m just gonna go for it. And it turned out that was the right decision. But I know that vitex is also another supplement that also works well for a lot of people with hormonal acne, and this thing that this lady wrote about Vitex, Burdock, and Milk Thistle was very interesting. But at that point, Estroblock on it’s own was working for me, so I didn’t bother with Vitex.

      In the end, I don’t know which ones you should take. From my own experience I’m tempted to tell you to take Estroblock since that worked so well for me, and generally everyone due to modern life has some bad estrogens to detoxify, so it wouldn’t hurt (by the way, Estroblock is the same as Estroguard, Estroguard just doesn’t have soy in it)

  42. Jennifer says

    Wow! Now I’m thinking of trying that Estroblock or Estroguard too! Is it safe to take if you’re still on the pill?

    • Tracy says

      Hi Jennifer, well at first I wasn’t sure, but then I recently read on the manufacturer’s website (of estroblock) that they recommend taking it while on the pill

  43. Jennifer says

    Thanks, Tracy. Just called the number on the EstroBlock website and spoke with a very nice lady, Rachel. She answered all my questions about the product and I ordered my first bottle. There’s no negative side-effects, no contradictions with any medications or vitamins and she said they even have cancer patients who benefit from this supplement as well. Figured with all that, it’s worth a try. She added that she’s been taking it for a while now and has noticed that her acne problem (that she’s been dealing with since she was 16) has completely disappeared and she has no mood swings and feels great! I can’t thank you enough for the tip on this product! I’ll let you know if I have the same success! ♥

    • Tracy says

      Oh awesome! That’s great info, thanks for giving them a call… that’s cool to hear too that the lady on the phone has even cleared up her acne with it

  44. Robyn says

    Hi Tracy,

    Robyn here again… I had posted a comment a couple weeks ago and I was just wondering if you’ve heard anything about milk thistle detoxifying the liver and your kidneys and colon not being able to keep up with the outflow of toxins and breaking you out even more?

    • Tracy says

      Hi Robyn :)
      I have not heard anything specifically about that, but it does make sense, like if you are prone to constipation. If you aren’t I can’t imagine it would be a problem but who knows! People’s bodies do weird things

  45. Patricia says

    Hi Tracy,
    I just started reading your blog, and e-book.. ate your quinoa tabbouleh recipe for dinner :)
    I have had acne since I was a teenager, and now at 27 I’m getting pretty bored with it.. the only thing that ever got rid of it (except during my period) was proactiv. I’m on the pill too, but mostly for the not getting pregnant thing.. been trying to go all natural, so 6 months ago I decided I was going to ween myself off of proactiv.. Haha that was a bad idea! My skin just kept getting worse as time went on. I was using aubrey face cleanser(all natural, mostly coconut oil) and my skin was so oily, not being used to the humid weather.. oh yeah I should mention I attempted this right before we moved across the country, from a hot dry state to a humid in the summer, and cold dry winters… So anyway, I tried a couple other things. My skin does not like tea tee oil.. after it started getting horrible, the zits just kept piling up, my husband convinced me to go back on proactiv.. I’ve been using that for 2 months now, and my face is dry and flaky, and still not better. Better than before though. My acne is only on my cheeks and jawline right now, but the is a big patch of it on each cheek that won’t go away. I went back to using the aubrey cleanser once a day, with proactiv, for the dryness. It is slowly getting better, but I feel there is something wrong with me. Sounds like it might be hormonal. Being Vegan I eat soy more now, but only like tofu once a week.. I know there has to be something wrong with my digestion. I sometimes get kind of bloated and fat as the day goes, like I’m pregnant with dinner, so I stress about the calories and foods I eat, dispite being Vegan and weighing 94 lbs..
    I’ve been pretty stressed in general too I guess….

    I don’t know what to do anymore. My plan right now is to stick it out with proactiv, but there’s some honey in the kitchen that I’m seriously considering rubbing on my face now.. I tried using food based stuff like that before I went on proactiv and it was very very bad.. my diet was not good then though.. maybe supplements will help. I don’t know what though..

    Sorry for the long post in story form

    • Tracy says

      Hi Patricia,
      I know that when you’re starting your journey to figure out what is going on with you and your skin, it can be pretty stressful and scary… but just keep experimenting because I think you will find what is going to do the trick for you and your skin. You have all of our support here!

  46. Patricia says

    Thanks Tracy,
    The support helps.

    I was wondering if a hormonal imbalance is what leads to the excessive stress, or the stress just makes it worse?
    Also I was curious if I attempt to go off the proactiv again and try something like honey or jojoba, should I slowly wean myself off the cleansers and lotions, or just not use it at all? I don’t want to be putting those toxins into my body. I hate it everytime I wash my face, and my dry flaky skin is yelling at me to stop, but every time I try to go natural it is a disaster. I know there is a detox period, but how long should that last and how bad does it get? I feel like its too long and too bad, when I try to eliminate the benzol peroxide.. maybe I need to work on controlling my stress and finding out what other factors may be causing my acne before I change my skin care routine?

    Thanks so much for the help. :)

    • Tracy says

      I would say yes, if changing to natural products continues not to work very well, you definitely should try working on your other lifestyle issues to begin healing the problem from the inside out. And then maybe you will have more success switching your skin care

  47. Tyra says


    If I was taking cod liver oil like the one you mentioned on your other article, can I still take burdock root since that cleanses out the blood?
    Or is it just ok to take the cod liver oil without adding any more supplements?

    Thank You

    • Tracy says

      Yes, you can definitely take them both. Also yes, you can take burdock in tea form, capsule, or tincture. The tea is fine, it’s just that I always find taking supplement in tea form much less convenient… not to say it’s any worse.

  48. Tyra says

    I forgot to mention is taking the burdock root by drinking them as tea (Alvita Caffeine Free Tea Burdock Root) is similar to taking the capsules?

  49. Nicole says

    Hi Tracy,

    Would it be wise to begin on vitex now that I’ve started weaning off the pill? I heard it often takes 3 months before it starts to work and I’m scared of breaking out once I’ve comletely weaned off BC and before vitex kicks in. What would you suggest?

      • Nicole says

        Thanks Tracy. I’ll get on it right away. Also, I just wanted to thank you for all the great information you’ve made available to me and tons of other people. Your website and all the articles have been extremly helpful so thanks!

  50. Joy says

    Hi Tracy,

    I am wondering what were the stages that you experienced. Did you get an initial breakout and when did you realize that your acne started clearing?

    And also what you think about evening primrose oil?

    • Tracy says

      Hi Joy,
      I wouldn’t say I got an initial breakout.. I’ve had mild cyclical acne around my chin that comes and goes for a couple of years since I got rid of my severe acne (like it would be pretty much clear for three or four weeks, and then for a week or so I’d get quite a few smallish pimples around my chin, and then that would go, and come back, and so forth). So I’d say my normal breakout cycle just continued, until a few months in and then stopped! I’ve still had a pimple here and there since, but that whole breakout cycle has pretty much stopped completely.

  51. Maria says

    Since I got off the pill during the summer, I’m just now getting acne around my mouth. Does it matter what brand of Vitex? I got the GNC Herbal Plus Vitex and that says to only take one a day so just wondering if that’s enough or if I should have gotten a different brand? I’m 19 and really trying to regulate my hormones. BC is terrible. I also got some probiotics from GNC to help and I take multi-vitamins. What else should help?

    • Tracy says

      I’ve found it difficult to find exact information on how much Vitex to take, and I’m thinking that the potency might vary from brand to brand, which is why it’s probably a good idea just to take what the bottle says. In addition to vitex, make sure you are eating well, sleeping well, exercising, etc.. this will all help to regulate the hormones!

  52. Lithuin says

    Hi Tracy!!!

    Thank you for being an inspiration for us all and you help in spreading knowledge about natural ways of healing acne.

    You helped me to a great deal. After reading this post I ordered DIM, vitex and burdock root supplements, and IT TOOK A WEEK to get me almost clear! I feel like it’s a miracle and am so greatful!!! I’m not completely clear yet, because I’ve bee eating wrong a lot lately, but my skin is about 80 % better and smoother and heals faster. I’m pretty sure I will get completely clear with these supplements if I live and eat a bit healthier and this has lifetd my spirits so much! It’s been amazing to be able to eat even a bit dairy which has always made me break out a lot, not having to worry that much about food anymore.

    I’m 30 now and have tried pretty much everything to cure my acne, which i got when I was 11. Several times of anitbiotics, isotretinoin, birth control pills, spironolactone, chiro-inositol, NAG, low carb dairy & gluten free diet, more and more supplements… I had already almost given up on getting clear.

    All I can say is that you kind of saved me! :)))) Thank you so much & keep up the good work!

  53. Brooke says

    Hi Tracy,

    Let me first say that I have learned a lot from your website, and I think it contains a lot of really valuable tips/information. About two months ago, I had pretty clear skin while using prescription topicals (Retin-A and sulfacatemide), but I was worried about their long-term effects and they affected my overall skin texture/quality. So I opted for an all-natural approach and stumbled across your site. YAY!

    That said, however, I wanted to share with you my personal experience taking Vitex Chaste berry and Nature’s Way Dim-plus. After I read this article in early December, I read some positive reviews on Amazon and quickly ordered both supplements. I also started doing the Caveman regimen in early December, and, at first, was having really great results. My skin started regaining its glow and my pores shrunk in a way that I didn’t know was possible.

    Toward the end of the month, however, I experienced some major breakouts along my chin and jawline, which I figured might be some initial reaction to the caveman regimen. I carried on but eventually had to start wearing makeup because I was embarrased to go to work. Throughout December, I only took the supplements when I remembered (maybe 4-5 days a week, not twice a day).

    In the second half of December and into January, my emotional health took a nose dive. I began feeling extremely extremely anxious and having negative thoughts that I just couldn’t shake. (“I have nothing going for me; I’ve made so many irrevocable errors in my life; I have no social skills; etc.”) In the past, I have experienced depression and anxiety, so I didn’t make any connection between those emotional issues and the supplements. (I had also recently broken up with my boyfriend, was spending way too much time at home, and was having trouble finding a decent job after graduating.)

    THEN, in early January, I cleaned my room and transferred the supplements on my desk where I would see them. I started taking them everyday, 2x for the chaste berry. During this time, I also cut out almost all sugar, wheat, and dairy from my diet as part of my skin regimen. All the while, my skin kept looking worse and worse, but I attributed it to stress and wearing makeup on the caveman regimen.

    Meanwhile, my emotional state dropped to the point that I had almost zero self-confidence.
    I had major painful red spots all along my jawline, and then my forehead totally exploded. Little bumps EVERYWHERE. Last week, I finally just broke down and started crying because I was so upset with my skin and my life, and I told my mom I needed a therapist.

    Later that night, I was sitting at my desk and thinking about the comment my brother had made about my forehead resembling a poison ivy rash. I suddenly looked at the Vitex Chaste Berry supplement and FINALLY connected the dots. I researched the supplement, and it turns out that depending on a person’s hormone balance, it has the potential to exacerbate. In my case, I may also have been allergic to the supplement because the “acne” ITCHES.

    IN ADDITION, I found out that Vitex Chaste berry affects dopamine levels in the brain and can aggravate depression and anxiety, particularly in those with prior history of the problems. I even read reports from women who had taken the supplement and began having suicidal thoughts. It is SERIOUS stuff.

    The supplement also caused me to miss my period. So I have now not had one for about 6 weeks, as a result of the hormone disturbance.

    Of course, I was pretty dumb not to have made the connection between the herbal remedies and my skin problems far sooner. Now, a week after stopping them, my acne is horrible. It might be improving slowly, but it’s still itchy. Without makeup, I look rather hideous. I imagine it will take a while for my hormone levels to re-adjust. (I read one account of a girl who had been off it for a month, and her skin was still awful.)

    Emotionally, however, I am feeling ten times better than even last week. I am no longer entrapped in a pit of despair. My thoughts are much more positive, and I’m generally less sensitive. Thank goodness!!

    I am hopeful that my skin will clear up, even if it takes a few months for all the redness to diminish. I just wanted to share this horror story to let you know that this is a VERY STRONG SUPPLEMENT that CAN totally disrupt the body’s hormone balance. Although it undoubtedly works for many women, it probably should not be recommended without warnings. For six weeks, I didn’t think to blame the supplement because I trusted your information without questioning it.

    This is the first time I have ever left a comment on a blog, but I thought that other people should be aware of the risks (physical & mental) of Vitex Chaste Berry and other herbal supplements. I found that “natural” does not = safe.

    All the best,

    P.S. Based on my research, I believe that Vitex Chaste berry was the source of my problems, but it is possible that the DIM supplement also had adverse effects. (I cannot know for sure.)

    • Tracy says

      Hi Brooke,
      Thanks for sharing your experience with Vitex. Sorry to hear it was such a bad experience for you! This is kind of why I hate making recommendations at all, because you never know how people will react to any given thing. Anyway, it’s good that you have shared this because now people can take it into consideration before trying it. So everyone: it really is best to get your hormones tested first or talk to a naturopath before using supplements, especially if this story has concerned you. And always thoroughly research anything you read about, and don’t just take anyone’s word for anything. :) Brooke, here’s to your healing, lots of love. Tracy x

      * Also, I just edited the article and gave a little warning about the potential for side effects with Vitex

  54. Katie says

    Thank you for this video and post! Five months ago when I quit nursing my son and consequently got off the mini pill my face went absolutely crazed, along with my hormones! I tried a regular bc pill for a month after and just really didn’t want to take them so I stopped. Since then I’ve been battling hormonal acne. And although I haven’t got the deep, cystic type for the last few months, it’s still a constant breakout battle all the time! I just ordered EstroBlock and burdock root, and I also have an essential oil blend from the brand doTerra called Zendocrine for liver detoxify. I really hope they do the trick and thank you again!

  55. Maria says

    Do you know much about the blood type diet? I went to a naturopath and she suggested that I go on it to help with breakouts and she said supporting your liver will keep your gut happy and that will help regulate your hormones. So I’m blood type O. I’m glad I can eat meat, but being a college girl it’s difficult to not eat wheat or dairy 😛 It’s also expensive to eat healthier (which doesn’t make sense) but I’m willing to try it and I like it so far. It’s cool trying new things. Also, burdock root is discouraged for blood type O…I got some before I found that out. What do you think about that? I’m really not sure why. And for everyone, get probiotics! The ones that have to be refrigerated are the best. Those really help enhance digestion and elimination. You want to keep some of the good bacteria in your system and pasteurization gets rid of that.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Maria,
      I can’t verify if the blood type diet is legit, but I think it’s an interesting thing to explore. It is definitely a potential explanation as to why certain types of foods work better with certain people. I also have no idea why burdock root would be discouraged with Os, but maybe it’s true ?

  56. Claire says

    Hi Tracy, I have had acne for 26 years and have tried every medication, pill lotion cream going but nothing has made it disapear for good. I have an underactive thyroid and since i became ill with the symptoms my acne got worse ( around 6yrs since i entered my 30’s). I have it really bad on my chin and mouth lips etc and around my eybrows. I also have big painful ones by my ears and neck and on my back. I trained in beauty so i know how to look after my skin but even with a heavy coverage of make up on im still too embarrassed to go up close to people in daylight as the huge lumps and bumps stick out…i hate it so much. I have switched to a dairy wheat and gluten free diet and have been doing it for around 6wks now and nothing has changed so far. I was wondering, i take a thyroid medication called t3, do you know if i could take the supplements you surgest while taking t3? I cant seem to find any info about it. Thanks x

    • Tracy says

      Hi Claire,
      I’m sorry to hear of your long struggle with acne! Unfortunately I don’t know how these supplements react with other supplements, you will need to contact the company that makes them to see if there are any concerns! love x

  57. Jasmin says

    Hi Tracy! Great article! I suffer from hormonal cystic acne and have heard a lot of great things about this supplement called Herpanacine (that I just started taking about a month ago). The idea behind Herpanacine is that it’s a “skin support system from the inside out”. It’s cleans your liver/blood and is said to help people with varies skin problems (including acne). I was wondering if you’ve ever heard of this supplement? (I’m a month into taking it and havent had a miracle happen yet but its said to take up to 6 months to see results)

    • Tracy says

      Hi Jasmin!
      I haven’t heard of it, but it sounds like a good one, as it would encompass both what the milk thistle/liv tox and the burdock root would do in one supplement. I say go for it.

  58. Cheryl says


    Words cannot describe what you have done for me today. I have been using your blog as a resource for a while now, as I’ve been battling a mysterious year of aggravated acne in my early/mid 20’s. I’ve been stressed about making my diet perfect (tried every restrictive diet that’s suggested these days), and I’ve been exercising almost every day–all to no avail.

    I was at my wits end and went to a well-respected dermatologist yesterday, who highly insisted that I take the antibiotic doxycycline for 3 MONTHS along with a topical retinoid and benzoyl peroxide to boot. None of this coincides with my strong belief in resolving issues naturally–but I was feeling desperate so I filled out the prescription. I didn’t sleep last night in anticipation of starting the antibiotics this morning, and I just knew (thankfully) I couldn’t get myself to go through with it. I searched your blog,and , sure enough, this article came up and entirely soothed my terrible anxiety about my failure to clear my skin. I feel so much happier knowing that the next option for me to try consists of these natural remedies rather than months of destroying my body from the inside out!

    If this blog hadn’t been here I very well might have caved and undone all of the progress I’ve made on my healthy body over the years. Thank you SO MUCH for having this resource here for us. I’ll be starting the Estroblock/LivTox supplementation next week.


  59. Frances Jennings says

    Hi Tracy

    I just had a quick read through this post and the comments and wanted to say how nice it is of you to reply to all these people with such detailed and considerate responses. It must have taken you ages.

  60. Staci says

    One of the side effects, which I’ve experienced, is sore breasts. Not fun.

    Cutting out caffeine is a big one too as it causes a spike in cortisol which is the stress hormone. I’ve taken to calling a cup of coffee “a cup of stress” because of this. Coffee is liquid stress. Sad cause it tastes good!

    Puppies are also a great stress reliever! But, on second thought, after taking care of two puppies then maybe not a PUPPY but a grown potty trained dog that doesn’t chew on wall corners anymore. Haha! Dogs are great for stress relief and it’s scientifically proven! Yay for doggies!

    Love your blog, Tracy. Found it today and can’t stop reading! Keep up the good work!

    • Tracy says

      That’s one side effect I’ve noticed about Estroblock – no more sore boobs! That used to be my sure fire way to know my period was coming.

      Also – yes…. dogs…. oh man, my dogs make me laugh and smile so much every day. I think they are outstanding for my health! haha

  61. Esti says

    Hi what advise can you give me to treat acne during pregnancy? my acne is possibly due to inefficient liver. I am currently off dairy- for almost 3 months, off sugar and gluten (mostly ), off coffee, taking supplements, am taking fermented cod liver oil, juice f&v often…
    Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Esti,
      I’m not sure that I have anything specific to add about acne in pregnancy (I mean beyond everything I already recommend on this site)… the best thing to do is just eat and lead as healthy a lifestyle as possible (which is also good for the baby), and don’t stress! At least you know it’s going to pass. What you’re doing sounds positive. Make sure you don’t do any mega detoxing or anything though (make changes slowly), as detoxing causes toxins to go to the fetus

  62. Paige says

    Hi Tracey,

    I’m going to buy estroblock, however, there are two different products: estroblock and estroblock pro. Which would you recommend?


  63. Hannah says

    Hi, I was just wondering if anyone had had adverse affects from taking the Milk Thistle? I’ve been on a wholefood diet for 3 weeks; I started taking milk thistle about 3 days ago (capsule form – just one a day) and it seems to have completely blocked me up when I’ve been totally and shockingly regular since I started eating this way for my skin. I know it’s really meant to help the liver and therefore to help clear my skin, but I worry that if it’s blocking up my digestion that that might create more toxins than an unhelped liver would anyway. And it’s quite uncomfortable. I’ve totally lost my appetite cause I feel like I can’t possibly fit anything else in. Can anyone help??

    • Tracy says

      Hi Hannah,
      It’s possible for any supplement to negatively affect you since everyone is so different… if you are finding it is blocking you up, then you’re right – it’s probably not improving matters. You might do better with a different liver support supplement

  64. Cheryl says

    Hi Tracy,

    I could not find the specific Liv-Tox brand you mentioned, but I started taking the Liver Rescue 4+ (http://www.iherb.com/HealthForce-Nutritionals-Liver-Rescue-4-120-VeganCaps/19192) along with estroblock as you mentioned—and weird things are happening with my poo!!

    Pretty much the day after I started this new regimen (only two total of each supplement spread out through the day), my poo started having a red tint to it. I tried to shrug it off as not being blood or anything serious…but then it continued to get worse. Just last night, the last poo I’ve had since starting this a few days ago, I could definitely see that there was light blood all through my soft stool, and even some small pink gelatinous looking guys. I’ve been searching everywhere for symptoms like this, and I can’t find any.

    I’m just curious if this happened to anyone else? It also reminded me of something that you said came out during your dreaded liver flush? Either way, I’m honestly spooked and hoping that I’m not hurting my body :/. Let me know if you have any insight!


    • Tracy says

      Hi Cheryl,
      Yikes :/ I can’t say “yeah don’t worry about it” because I don’t know what it is. If it really is blood… usually it’s black if it’s from the upper intestinal tract, and if it’s from the lower intestinal tract, it might be red…. I don’t know what that tells you though.

      Either way, I wish I could say what to do… it might be nothing to worry about, but it might not be :/ I’ve never heard of symptoms of blood in the stool because of supplements like this. It seems more likely it would be parasites being expelled from the liver, especially if they look gelatinous

  65. Cheryl says

    The parasites might be possible–are they common? I went to the doctor today and he said that parasites are only likely “if you’ve been living in a tropical country” haha. He also took a stool sample and after visually confirming that it was blood, he came back later to say that the tests results came up negative for blood! I’m pretty confused. Milk thistle, or schisandra berry aren’t known to drastically change poo color, are they?

    Sorry for hijacking your feed with my poo concerns! I just figure you’re the person to ask about this method :)

    Thank you again,

    • Tracy says

      I think they’re a lot more common than is thought. “you only have parasites if you’ve been in tropical countries” sounds like typical narrow minded doctor speak! That’s probably what they were told in medical school, so that is their final answer

      Anyway… google liver flukes and look at the images.

      Also here’s my article about parasite cleansing: http://thelovevitamin.com/4490/parasite-cleanse-acne/

      • Cheryl says

        Thanks for your response! Just to quell any fear I might have accidentally instilled in anyone about these supplements, it ended up being BEETS. Who knew they could stay in your system (and poo) for up to 5 days. Even the doctor was convinced it was blood until he did a test. I’m going to start this regimen again without fear. Haha…oopsie-daisies.


        • Tracy says

          ohhhh BEETS… haha. wow, I’m surprised there was enough beets in a liver supplement to turn your poo red.. well thanks for updating us!! glad it wasn’t blood!!

  66. Maria says

    I’m about to give up :( I don’t want to go back on the pill but I really don’t know how to fix this. I went to a naturopath and she gave me something to help my liver and I took all of those and I know that wasn’t the problem and she also gave me Indole 3 carbinol. I didn’t get a hormone test done she just assumed my hormone levels from the birth control pill (Aviane) that I used to take. Apparently it had a synthetic progestogen and she said it caused my estrogen levels to decrease as well as my progesterone but yet I’m still estrogen dominant…if that makes sense. I’m not taking anything to help me get my progesterone normal…will natural progesterone oil (progestelle) help? I don’t want to take it for the rest of my life though :/ I’m young, 19, and just want to fix this and be done. It seems like no matter what I eat it doesn’t get better or worse so I really don’t think food is the issue. I think it’s because my progesterone is low and that’s causing the breakouts by my mouth but they won’t go away. It’s been like 8 months now since I stopped taking the pill :/

    • Tracy says

      Hi Maria,
      I say try the vitex… Vitex is usually the most effective for women who need to raise their progesterone, as it helps your body naturally raise it. It works really well for people who have post birth control acne, as that is usually the imbalance women have after they go off it.

  67. Maria says

    I tried Vitex and it gave me diarrhea (gross, sorry!) and my naturopath said she usually gives that to women in menopause and wouldn’t suggest it for me. I feel like I’m out of options and it’s expensive to make another appointment with her. Will maca root powder help in place of vitex?

  68. Van says

    I had acne since I was 21 I am now 27. I was pregnant last year and last year was the best my skin has been since I was 21. After I gave birth I went on the birth control pill not long after I have given birth I sadly started to spot alot again :(. I wanted to know if you think it is hormonal acne since I was completely clear and I didn’t do anything to my skin. Like everyone when I was not pregnant I was taking this and that and using natural expensive products and still did not get results. I am tempted to give your way ago but I aint 100% sure if its hormonal acne… I was not on bpc for the past 2 years before I have given birth. I have acne on my chin, cheeks, forehead. I dont have acne on my jaw line, nose and side of my face, those are completely clear and its rare for me to spot in those areas.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Van,
      Well, acne is all kind of hormonal, and if your skin cleared up completely when you were pregnant than I would definitely say it was hormonal! However, it might not be the type of hormonal imbalance that is described here (estrogen dominance). However, my acne prone areas are chin (most stubborn), forehead (less stubborn), and when my skin was bad, around my smile lines on each side of my nose (which don’t break out anymore at all since getting rid of the severe acne). My cheeks have never been acne prone at all, and never has my jaw. But this still worked for me, so you never know! I would encourage you to give Estroblock and the liver supplement (and maybe the burdock too) a try, you might be pleasantly surprised.

  69. Kit says

    I’ve read this article before, but this has been on my mind lately so here I am again. I’m starting to wonder if this is a problem for me. I’ve been healing my gut with a naturopath for months and seen huge, huge improvement. However, like you had, I have that last bit of stubborn acne that will. Not. Effing. Budge. It’s driving me nuts. I’ve eliminated all allergens and sensitivities and I don’t get the swollen, cystic spots that I used to get from food anymore, but I’m getting tiny little bumps on an almost daily basis. It just doesn’t feel fair. I LITERALLY don’t touch junk food EVER, I’m in great shape, and I’ve quit all my commercial skin care products. It’s made a huge difference…but where are these blasted tiny bumps coming from?

    I’m going to ask my naturopath, but I have a hunch something is up hormonally. About four years ago, when I first started birth control, my skin improved tremendously despite not knowing about my allergies and digestive issues. It wasn’t perfect but it was a hell of a lot better than it had been before.

    I’ve been on and off the pill through different courses of Accutane, and am still on it despite being off Tane for a good while now. Debating weaning off of it.

    I wonder if something like this would work for me to knock down these last tiny spots. Any thoughts, Tracy? I’m curious how this sounds to you.

    • Kit says

      I should add that I’m also not a high-stress person, am lucky enough to love my job, sleep eight hours a night and so on. I really have no clue what else the issue could be.

  70. Sara says

    Hi Tracy!

    I just recently got off the birth control pill yaz about a month ago since then I’ve had horrible cystic acne that won’t go away no matter what I try! It’s so frustrating I’ve become very depressed I don’t leave my house unless I absolutely have to and I’ve also developed many other not so pleasant symptoms:( when I was on the pill I had crystal clear perfect skin not even a breakout around my period I was also taking 50mg of spironolactone along with the pill. I decided I wanted to take a natural approach to clear up my skin since going on the pill was my reason to clear my skin. I’ve been on and off the pill for 15 years now. I never want to go back on it. I made an appointment with a naturopath but its not for another two weeks which seems like forever to wait while dealing with new cystic breakouts everyday! I have read about the estroblock and am wondering if I have cystic hormonal acne does that mean my estrogen levels are to high and my progesterone is to low? Will taking estroblock and vitex at the same time be ok? I’m currently taking evening primrose oil, zinc,omega-3,neem,Gaia liver support,milk thistle,probiotics,& a prenatal vitamin and seeing no results in clearing up my breakouts. It sounds like I’m going through the same thing you were and its so frustrating. Your skin looks amazing by the way I just hope I can get my perfect complexion back soon. Any advice would be appreciated!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Sara,
      Yes, I’d say try the Vitex, as it usually helps the most with a low progesterone state which is what usually is the problem after someone goes off BC.

        • Tracy says

          Oh sorry, yes you can :) The two will probably help you out. Although often they don’t work fully until a couple of months into taking them, so be aware of that

  71. Claire says


    I’ve always had a muscular build, and have been dealing with vaginal dryness (symptom of androgen dominance) ever since my sudden non-stop acne breakout that started last year in my early 20’s. I’ve read online that DIM is also good for excess androgens, as well as excess estrogen, but I’m curious if you knew anything about it being used for androgens well?
    Thanks for all if your support!!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Claire,
      Well, I don’t know specifically about androgens, but I do often hear that women with PCOS do really well with DIM, and PCOS is generally an androgen dominant condition. I don’t think it would hurt to give it a try.

  72. Ness says

    Hello Tracey/ everyone :)

    I managed to get a hold of some estroblock in Australia but seem to be experiencing some kind of initial breakout. Just wondering if anyone has experienced the same thing and when did it calm down?

    Ness xox

  73. Sara says

    Hi Tracy

    My estroblock should be here any day I’m so excited to try it! I will keep u posted on my experience on it. You said you noticed results within 2 weeks? I’m also seeing a naturopath tomorrow keeping my fingers crossed that it goes well xo

    • Tracy says

      Hi Sara, I wouldn’t say two weeks… I think it took at least over a month to really notice a big difference. Some people do see results within two weeks though

  74. Tahlia says

    Hi Sara
    Your story on this issue is so familiar.
    I am 26 years old and the last 2 years for my skin have been awful. This was at a time when I was actively changing my lifestyle for the better (early 20’s were very toxic!). I work out 5 times a week, have recently changed to a pescetarian diet (will induldge on the weekends on a meal with chicken or red meat and a dessert and a glass of wine). But I am very strict Mon-Fri, with only organic produce, lots of juicing, Hemp, spiralina and I live a relatively stress free life (no constant worries) and I take 2 caps of Evening Primose at night, and was taking Angus Castus Berry caps. With all of these healthy habits, I still get very large pimples on my cheeks. I have been told that is area is specific for liver. So I will try Budrick root or Milk thistle as you suggested, But can you suggest anything else? I feel great, but my complexion does not show this! My skin looked better when i was living a toxic lifestyle and it causes me self esteem problems. I do wear make up to work daily, but not lots and I cleanse at night with only water and an organic natural exfoliator. So i am at a loss what else i can do! Your input will be helpful. Thanks for the great info :) x

    • Aida says

      Hi Tahlia :),
      I had acne only on my cheeks for 8 years, also large pimples as you described. The casual healthy diet didn´t work. But than I tried vegan diet. It´s really funny, the face mapping that Tracy posted´s saying no meat and milk for acne on cheeks, because they show the state of your lungs :)

      As for the psychological cause, acne on cheeks is self – developed. It could be protecting you from sexual activities or it could help you as an excuse, we´re naturally polygamous by the way. Monogamy was imposed on us because repressed sexuality creates in your body anger and anxiouty through high adrenalin level, unhappy sheeps are controlable. You may have problem with self – image and internal disgust towards your body. You may pick partners who you consider below your league because it´s much safer. You may also be afraid of being yourself, acne that persists to adulthood is distorted self – image. You may be trying to do anything to not to be as your same – sex parent.You may be peaple – pleaser, always sorting negative emotions inside, than you´d be the popular one – everybody likes you – impossible if you´re honest with yourself.You may have no true respect for yourself and your body.

      Dunno which will resonate with you, maybe few.

      The best way to indicate what causes your acne is body scanning. With acne on your cheeks you´ll feel your cheeks are getting hot…storing and inflammation beginns. These flushes in your face are very subtle but if you try to pay attention you´ll easily spot them. Then think about that situation, your unconscious thoughts, motives of your behaviour and gather information, think about it, talk about it with others. This way your brain learns new behavioural patterns.You have to persuade yourself that you dont´t need to repeat this harmful behaviour. Think about the news, if you watch them everyday you become angry and sad, the same applies for positive things. You have to always catch your thoughts, the minute you have them it´s already late of course, spots will appear. You have to change the mechanism of the thoughts till they vanish.

      The information is taken from very old Russian and German books about Psychosomatic.
      I cured my acne this way, it took me about a year prior those 8 years of no success with traditional treatment. And I also cured my other problems : alergy, thyroid gland – goiter, pancreas, phytriosis chronica – skin illness and bronchitis through my thoughts. Each took about half year prior 6 or 7(bronchitis 2 weeks). And of course without any medication.

      Medical industry is mechanism for killing people.
      You can cure anything through your thoughts, must admit not even food is important. There´s a lot of information about tons of people cured from cancer this way. But these doctors were then mostly killed and information not given to the public. Think about the amount of money they get from people. Papers I had were from old shabby libraries nobody goes to.

      But you sometimes need a help of faith which always comes at the point of the death 😀

  75. Sara says

    Hi Tahlia

    I know exactly how u feel! My self esteem is pretty much non-existent right now. It sounds like your eating very healthy and taking good supplements. As far as the big breakouts on your cheeks that’s related to lungs, colon and stomach. The forehead is liver. You could have a problem with candida. Have you ever been on birth control pills or antibiotics? You may want to look into the candida diet and get on some different herbs also. Oregano oil, grapefruit seed oil, coconut oil is very good for this too. My face also looked amazing while living a toxic lifestyle, eating whatever I want, drinking alot of wine or beer and my face never broke out, but I’m guessing that was the birth control pills keeping my skin clear. Look into the candida diet it’s very strict and it’s very hard to be on it but it may help with those breakouts on your cheeks! You may want to try putting apple cider vinegar on a cotton ball and put it on your face after cleansing it. Do u take zinc or vitamin A? You can drink wine without sulfites but I wouldn’t recommend it while being on the candida diet. Also there is a candida cleanse you can do its by renew life. I can also send u goods to eat and foods to avoid while on this diet. I hope this helps! Anymore questions feel free to ask

    • Tahlia says

      Hi Sara
      Just wanted to update you on a few things…
      Since I posted I bought myself some Viridian Dandelion with Burdock Extract capsules. I take one daily, along with 2 x evening primose rose and 3 x QUEST ACIDOPHILUS PLUS 120C. I am also using Sukin Organic skincare as a cleanser and 100% aloe vera as a moistriser.
      I stocked up on all of these items in one shop, and since then i have only had 1 pimple (side of my head!) My skin has cleared up and i have had no new pimples pop up at all on my cheeks. I did not even have a breakout on my chin when i had my period… So i am not sure what has exactly worked, or if its a combination of all these things… I am even stricter on my diet also. No meat (am having seafood 1 a week). I have cut out desserts on the weekend. I had a few easter eggs (maybe explains the 1 pimple on the side of my head!).
      But I wanted to share this with everyone… as i never thought my skin would clear up… Everyone will be different, but maybe some of these things may help other people.
      I do have a few scars and redness still, but with summer coming up i do hope that some vitamin d will bring a new complexion for me :)

      • Tahlia says

        Forgot to add- That I am only drinking bottled water. i am an australian living in London and do think that the tap water here is of a really bad quality compared to Australia. Also drinking lots of herbal tea- Rosehip, Nettle, Pau d’arco.

  76. Eva says

    Hello, do you know anything about spearmint tea and oily skin? I have many side effects that would say I have high testosterone(extra facial hair, hair on neck, oily skin, hair on belly, late periods(every 2 months) and I get irritated and angry really easily) I should get my hormones check to know for sure but I am 99% sure I have it. I was wondering if I do start drinking it, it won’t “mess up” my hormones, will it? My hormones are already messed up from stress and my oily skin seems to be making my acne worse.

    I have another question about my digestive system. I know there are many options and articles you have written and I really like them but I am really scared to try them. I have read that drinking apple cider vinegar with water will help with your digestive system? If you have any info on that, I would be grateful. Thank you Tracy! I love your blog, I can literally read it over and over again!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Eva,
      I have heard spearmint is great for androgen dominance, but I haven’t studied it in depth enough to say at this time what the potential side effects are, if any.

      As for the digestive system, what makes you nervous about trying the suggestions? For many apple cider vinegar does help you to digest your food better. I can’t say if it will be a miracle, but it seems to be for some

  77. Natalie says

    Can you take Vitex while menstruating? I have found conflicting suggestions in my research on this question.

    • Tracy says

      I’ve heard a lot of conflicting things too, so I don’t know for sure, but I am leaning toward saying that you can take it while menstruating

    • Cheryl says

      Hi Natalie,

      I was diagnosed with low Progesterone by my amazing naturopath and she prescribed me vitex. She made a point of telling me to take it throughout my cycle, unlike the natural progesterone I’m taking from Wild Yam which I’m supposed to stop when I start menstruating because it is much stronger than vitex. Who knows if this is proven or not, but she seemed very adamant about telling me this.
      Hope this helps!

  78. Basha says

    Hi Tracey, Thank you for another great article! I’m wondering if you have any experience or opinion on home saliva testing kits.

    • Tracy says

      I think they are actually a good option for saliva testing, although I’m not sure if they help you interpret the results at all. Not saying they don’t, I just don’t know.

  79. Nanco says

    Hi Tracy! I finally got in with a naturopath for hormone testing and iGg. (Appt is tomorrow.) I’ve been taking an herbal supplement with chaste tree berry. I’m going to ask the naturopath, but do you have any idea if I should have stopped taking it before getting the saliva test? I’m really hoping this appointment answers some questions and points me in the right direction. I’m 35 and this is just so frustrating.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Nanco… hmm.. I actually don’t know how these supplements would affect a saliva test. Ask your naturopath and maybe let us know what he/she says

  80. Kat says

    Hey Tracy,
    I live in Brazil, and im suffering from hormonal acne after quitting the birth control pill. I want to try vitex herb, but here in Brazil i could only find the herb to make the tea. Do you know how much and how many times i have to drink the tea everyday? Have you heard about vitex tea?
    Thank you, and i love your blog and your youtube channel (: you are awesome!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Kat, sorry I’m not sure about the tea dosage. I was actually just informed that in Europe, vitex is only known as “Agnus Castus” .. maybe see if they have it in supplement form under that name?

  81. Sara M says

    Oh my god!!! I read your article and wanted to fall on my knees crying with relief. Relief that there IS something I can do about Gs acne “mask” I get once a month. It takes my pimples sometimes two weeks to clear up after my hormonal flare ups. I have clear beautiful skin for about 8 days out of the month. The rest of the time is spent with starting a flare up, the climax of the flare up, and the slow recovery of the flare up post period. It’s depressing to be 34 years old and have this happen to me. My face looked better 10 years ago. Rarely any acne. I can’t thank you enough for posting this. I am starting an estroblock regimen tomorrow. I’ll check back in a few months. THANK YOU for sharing this!!!!!

  82. rani says

    I just found your blog and it’s amazing how beautiful you and your skin are…which i hope will be me one day.I had clear skin all my life until age 23 when i began breaking out and it’s been ups and downs till now at age 30.Almost a year ago i found Fran Kerr’s video on youtube recommending vitex for hormonal acne and decided to try it since my cystic acne was mostly on my chin and jawline but had a fairly good amount of acne on my cheeks too.I’ve faithfully taken vitex for 11 months and have not gotten clear skin except for when i reached the 3 month mark and now my acne is at it’s worse.I initially began taking 3 vitex pills a day but within the first two weeks i was throwing up whatever food i ate, so i dropped down to 2 a day and within 3 months my face was clear.I reduced to 1 a day as recommended and within 2 weeks of doing that i began breaking out again so i bumped it up to 2 a day and have been taking 2 pills a day religiously for 11 months,instead of 1 as recommended on the Nature’s Way bottle, but my skin has never gotten clear,if anything this month has been the worst ever with severe and very painful cystic breakout on my chin,jawline and cheeks.I think maybe i am overdosing on the vitex and it’s causing more harm than good to me but am too terrified of dropping down to 1 a day beause of how bad my skin broke out when i tried dropping down to 1 after 3 months.I just began adding a zinc supplement with a daily multivitamin to the vitex but my cystic acne is horrible now.In fact i want to stop the vitex completely and try estroblock,milk thistle and burdock root as you suggested.Do you suggest i stick to the vitex for a few more months or try the estroblock combination? I am extremely desperate and have been in tears over how bad my skin is.I don’t know if it helps,but i am not overweight,drink only water and plenty of it,avoid processed junk and fried food(eat only home cooked meals),do not drink sodas or juices,avoid sugar and dairy completely and have tried all sorts of facial regimen to no avail.Please let me know what you think because am at a loss:(

    • Tracy says

      Yikes Rani! Doesn’t sound like vitex is for you. I would definitely say stop it and try the other three instead. Good luck lovely xo

  83. rani says

    Thank you so much for your quick reply! And am so glad you just said what i was thinking about the vitex because i began thinking i was just imagining things or wasn’t being patient enough.I will definately stop and order the other three.Thanks for helping us other acne sufferers out there!

  84. Nat says

    This is probably the most enlightening artical regarding the treatment of horomonal acne! I was diagnosed with endometriosis 3 years ago (estrogen dominant condition) I immediately started taking vitex to help balance out my horomones so I never really had to deal with a breakout ever! fast forward two years later I graduated college got a career got into the mut of chaos and stress and stopped taking vitex. At that point, my skin condition went haywire especially after taking a cocktail of lovely birth control pills meant to alieviate the symptoms of endometriois (but in reality they did nothing but actually worsen my horomonal balance), I didn’t go a day without a cyst erupting on my face. It is disgusting, annoying and definitely emotionally draining (ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU’VE NEVER HAD ACNE AS A TEENGAER). I came across some of my college photos and my skin had looked so clear back then, I remembered that I was on the vitex supplament to help with PMS at the time, at that point I knew that in order to get my skin back to th eway it used to be my horomones need to get balanced again. I immediately went to Whole foods and bought a bottle. I swear within 2 days my GIGANTIC CYSTS, NASTY OILY skin reversed. One month later and skin is still perfectly clear and scars and red marks are fading (PHEWW) That took a whole freakn year to figure out. Btw this is coming from the person that had tried everything to cure those nasty acne cysts, I even went on Spiro (the anti androgenic blood pressure med, because I had thought my problem was the extra androgens which increased due to a BC pill I was given)……..WRONG! Spiro was a major disaster, and so was every BC pill I was given (BC mess with your horomonal balance and increase estrogens, which is a bad idea if you are already estrogen dominant) Saw palmetto did nothing it actually aggrevated my breakouts, I tried guggul, tumeric, stiniging nettler and nothing. I saw that you had suggested burdock root as a liver cleansing supplament, the liver is especially important in maintaining horomonal balance however estrogen dominant folks needs to be careful with the herbs they experiment with. Burdock root is a phytoestrogen so it may actually aggrevate the conditions of those that have endometriosis, fibroids etc…. I suggest taking a mixture of gentian and buplereum (tincture form) this herbal mix is excellent in helping detox the liver, and best part is that it is not aphytoestrogen. Cheers to clear skin again!

      • Nat says

        Most certainly. cystic acne is traumatizing, I wish that more people related acne to maintaining good hormonal balance; I promise if more people did they would never get on accutance. It is a matter of finding the right herbal supplement which does the trick. Btw you look fantastic in the photo that you posted, who can tell that you suffered from acne, you don’t have a trace of it left whatsoever. Kudos.

    • Jordyn says

      Hey Nat,
      Thanks for your story. I am interested in taking Vitex also but i am not sure if i have estrogen dominance or testosterone dominance. I do have irregular periods though. Could you list some side effect you had or how’d you find out that you were estrogen dominant?

  85. Tani says

    Hi Tracy,
    I was thinking of trying DIM, calcium d-glucarate, and probiotics for hormones and acne. Can you please suggest any chewable, liquid or powder options? I can’t find anything except capsules and tablets of the DIM and calcium d-glucarate.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Tani,
      I’m not really aware of any cheweable, liquid or powder options of those supplements off the top of my head. The Estroblock DIM that I take is like a powder in a capsule, and you could open it and put it in water or something. I have no idea how it tastes. Calcium d-glucarate, I don’t know. For probiotics, I know that BioKult is a powder in a little capsule that you can open and put in water, and it doesn’t taste like anything

  86. Maria says

    How do you feel about high doses of vitamin A? My naturopath gave me vitamin A for acne and some other supplements. The vitamin A has 25,000 IU and I’ve been afraid to take it. She checked with me to make sure I’m not sexually active or anything cause it can cause birth defects if you get pregnant. I mean she did give it to me so does that mean it’s safe short term? It just makes me nervous. I’m been reading that it’s toxic in high doses. But could it be worse than accutane?

    • Tracy says

      Hi Maria,
      Hmm well, yeah, I do think high doses of synthetic Vitamin A are pretty sketchy. I am not aware if it’s worse than accutane, but .. yeah. It’s definitely concerning, especially if she told you it would cause birth defects.

      Natural occurring Vitamin A is much better for you and much safer at high doses, especially when regulated by Vitamin D with it. That’s why I recommend the fermented cod liver oil/butter oil supplement from Green Pastures http://thelovevitamin.com/3452/fermented-cod-liver-oil/, because it has both of these natural vitamins in a whole foods form. Grass fed liver is the other best way to get natural Vitamin A… you could eat liver, or I believe you can get dessicated liver capsules if you wanted, although it’s much more expensive

  87. Nanco says

    I’m getting Estroblock next week. I was wondering if any women would be interested in starting a “support group/progress log” to talk about our journeys? Post here if you are, and we can figure out a way to get in touch. Thanks to Tracy for this space, and all of your invaluable advice, research and support!

  88. Ally says

    I’ve been taking Estroblock for about 2 1/2 months and my acne has gotten worse. I never used to get acne in between my eyebrows and forhead but now I do. Its all on the right side of my face too. Do you think I should stop taking it or wait it out more? I know these things take time to work but I don’t want to continue taking it if it’s not working…

    • Tracy says

      Hi Ally,
      Sorry Estroblock isn’t working out for you. It’s hard to say if the worsened acne is actually due to the Estroblock or just some other thing, but I think by now if you’ve seen no improvement at all then it’s safe to say it’s not really doing anything for you. How many per day were you taking?

  89. Tisha says

    Okay so first off, I am so happy I stumbled upon this website! I really want to start, but I am a little confused on what to do. You mentioned a bunch of different things, so if you could help me fully understand, that would be great!
    You mentioned taking these:
    DIM, Vitex, Liv-Tox, Milk Thistle, Burdock Root, and Estroblock.
    Are they all the same thing just different types? (minus the Liv-Tox which is for the liver, right?)
    I was thinking of taking DIM, Vitex, and Liv-Tox all together, is that safe?

    Thanks for clarifying!!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Tisha,

      DIM and Estroblock are the same (Estroblock is a very good brand of DIM, the one I use and highly recommend). Liv-tox is milk thistle mixed with other liver support herbs. Vitex and burdock root are separate ones.

      And yes, you can take DIM, Vitex, and Liv-tox all together. Be careful with vitex though, most of the time it has no side effects and only positive benefits, but for some people it can cause some side effects. Just be aware of it so if you experience them, you can quit and they will go away.

      • Tisha says

        Tracy, I am still nervous about taking Estroblock, but I am so frustrated with my skin! I was thinking of just taking Estroblock and nothing else with it, will that help? I am also nervous because I am only 21 and I wasn’t sure if it safe to be taking at such a young age? Also my last question, if I take it and my skin begins to clear up, can I stop taking it? Will my acne come back and get worse??

        Thank you!!

        • Tracy says

          Hi Tisha,
          I can’t say how much Estroblock alone will work for you specifically. You just have to try it and see. There’s no reason you should be worried about it due to your age… you’re an adult, and it only helps your liver metabolize estrogens, something it does anyway, you are just giving it a big boost. As for can you stop taking it? I don’t know. I’m still taking it. Fran Kerr stopped taking hers and her skin stayed clear after. I can’t say what will happen for you… the acne might come back after you stop it, but it definitely wouldn’t get worse

  90. Hannah says

    I just wanted to add something to the vitex discussion that I’ve discovered based on my own experiences with it and some research that I’ve done. If your periods are irregular, then vitex will probably have very positive effects on your skin and will help regulate your period. However! If irregular periods are not a problem for you, then DON’T take vitex, because it can actually do more harm than good. In my case, my periods have always been very regular but after taking vitex for a month I developed spotting for almost a full week before I made a connection between it and vitex and stopped taking the supplement (spotting has never, ever been an issue for me before). Once I cut out vitex, the spotting went away.

    My suggestion for those who get hormonal acne but have regular periods would be to take dim; so far, I haven’t had any issues with it and my skin is looking great!

  91. Lorena says

    Hi Tracy!

    My skin was doing pretty well this past month. However, I was still struggling with tons of clogged pores and blackheads as well as with a bit of acne along my neck and jawline and around my mouth. I figured it was hormonal so I decided to take Estroblock (three pills a day); I got two cystic spots a few days before I started taking it. It’s been almost two weeks now, and my acne is getting steadily worse :-(. My mom thinks it’s the pills that are making me break out but, like I said, I had begun breaking out before I started it. Can DIM cause/worsen breakouts? I don’t know what to do now, I was doing so well (physically and mentally) and now I feel very discouraged and sad. Should I stay the course? I should add that I work in a very stressful environment. I’m also taking some other supplements; I don’t know if this would cause side effects.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Lorena,
      Well definitely nothing is impossible, but I think this supplement generally doesn’t cause side effects like that. The fact that you started getting the cysts before you started taking it makes me think it’s not that. Plus, the Estroblock probably hasn’t even really kicked in, it can be a few weeks to even a couple months to see significant changes. Sorry to hear you’re going through this :(

  92. Lorene says

    I stumbled across this site two months back when desperate for something to help my breakouts…I started Estroblock, Vitex and Milk Thistle and have to report that has worked WONDERS! I was almost at whits end, I’m 36 with 3 kids so it felt crazy to be breaking out like a teenager all the time. Thank you so much for your research and for sharing with everyone, I’ve passed this onto others with the problem and plan to share it with any of my 3 girls should the time come that they have the same problems.

  93. Lorena says

    I think you’re right; I’ll finish up the bottle and hope for the best. I think I had higher hopes, since Fran from High on Health said that people can expect to see results in two weeks; however, I should have realized that Fran is already much healthier than I am and didn’t have much acne to deal with. I started taking the cod liver oil as well, I hope that helps too.

  94. Caitlin says

    Hi Tracy,
    It’s Caitlin…I did the April 1st Candida Cleanse. I recently ordered Vitex, Estroblock, and Liv-Tox. I keep rereading this article, but am still confused if these are three different supplements, or am I doubling up on something?

    My skin is really struggling right now…partially because I have gradually gotten away from the cleanse diet…and I am feeling hopeless. But, I am prepared to get back on track with the diet and want to start this supplement regimen, too.

    Look forward to hearing from you.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Caitlin,
      yes they are three different supplements, and you can take all of them! Good luck with the supplements, I hope they work for you

      • Caitlin says

        Thanks, Tracy!

        On the Estroblock, it says to take 1 pill with food 2x a day. You suggested 3 pills a day. Can you explain why you took three? Just to amp the effectiveness?

        Also, would you recommend taking the Vitex (2 pills in AM) and Liv-Tox (1 pill a day) as directed? Do you know if it should be taken on empty stomachs?

        Thanks…I know you are super busy. I appreciate all you offer to your readers.

        • Tracy says

          I took 3 because I heard about Estroblock from Fran at High on Health, and she said that she had to take three to see a difference. So I just started out taking three. And apparently someone here has called the Delgado Protocol (the people who make it) and they said that for hormonal acne, a higher dose is more effective!

          Also, I decided to try the Estroblock Triple this time… since it’s more potent, you only need two (although the bottle costs more). Apparently when this person called up, the company suggested the Estroblock triple, two per day, for hormonal acne. … I don’t know! Seems to be working really well at the higher doses!

  95. Cheryl says

    Hey Tracy!
    After finding out I had a mild version of PCOS, I started a wonderful hormone-correcting regime given to me by my naturopath, consisting of vitex and wild yam-derived progesterone. While it regulated my periods, my acne only improved slightly, and at my checkup, my naturopath decided to prescribe me Oregano Oil in addition. This is where the magic happened.

    As my acne had hit all of the sudden while I was traveling overseas, my naturopath said that I might have gotten some type of bacteria. I guess the bacterial infection was compounding with my PCOS symptoms, and it really did a number on my skin–continuing to worsen over the course of the whole year.

    Now, finally, I am totally clear aside from some tinies now and then! I thought I would let you know how much the oregano oil helped me, as I haven’t read anything about it specifically on your blog yet (though I haven’t looked too far!)

    Thanks again for this wonderful resource. I wouldn’t have found out that I have PCOS at all, if it wasn’t for your website encouraging me to dig deeper.


    • Tracy says

      Hi Cheryl!

      I’m so glad to hear you found something that works for you! Yes it goes to show that there are just so many different reasons one could get acne, and all these things working together. It makes sense if you had some kind of bug/bacteria/something that oil of oregano would push you over the edge. It’s kind of like the candida thing… hormones are one part of it, but something like that might be another part of the story!

    • Nanco says

      Hi Cheryl. Would you mind sharing how much Oil of Oregano you were taking? Were you putting drops in water?

      • Cheryl says

        Hi Nanco,

        My Naturopath prescribed the Gaia brand Oregano Oil capsules: 4caps 2xdaily, preferably on an empty stomach. I’m supposed to keep that regimen up between 1-2 months to make sure the bacteria is dead and gone instead of just more angry and bionic haha.

  96. Jana says

    Hi Tracy.
    I got off birth control two months ago. It was progesterone-only pill. Since then the condition of my skin got the worst it has ever been. You mentioned that hormonal acne is most likely to appear around lips and jaw line but I have it mostly on my forehead. Also, I am 26 and have been on/off contraceptive pills from the age of 16 and never had such a big problem with acne when I stopped taking the pill. I was thinking about using Vitex maybe. Because I was on progesterone-only pill, I wonder if my estrogen levels are also likely to be out of balance..

    • Tracy says

      Hi Jana,
      Unfortunately I can’t actually say what your hormones are doing, so I can’t say if Vitex will work or not. It’s probably in part hormonal, but there are probably other internal factors happening as well (digestive issues maybe? stress?). Also hormonal acne tends to appear on the jaw and chin, but that’s not a law

  97. Nanco says

    Hi Tracy. I think you said you had a small breakout when you started Estroblock? I’m wondering how much acne you had when you started (was it pretty much already gone?) and if you had a “purge” breakout when you started. Thanks!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Nanco,
      I wouldn’t say I had an initial breakout.. I think I just continued for a while to have little breakouts that I would have had anyway. I haven’t heard of many people having an initial breakout with Estroblock, but with any supplement there is potential for a little purge/initial breakout.

  98. Natalie says

    Hi! Im 15 and my doctor recommended I go in birth control for my acne and I definetly do not want to go there. So, I’m wondering if Estroblock and/or vitex are safe for teens?

    • Tracy says

      Hi Natalie, I have read that “Herbalists have used vitex with much success in treating teenage acne”. I don’t know about Estroblock, but I don’t see why it would be a problem for teenagers, but I would double check with the company (Delgado Protocol) just to be sure

  99. Natalie A. says

    Hi Tracy,
    Many thanks to you, right away. I really like your blog. It took me a good amount of time to read it all and understand (had to do few researches on my own as well). I’m Vegan and believe a healthy diet is so important. However my face has been always very oily. I’m 26 now and stopped taking BC about 4 years ago and since then my acne has worsen comparing to when I was a teenager before BC. Some heavy antibiotics has helped me 3 years ago, but it all came back after one year (tried antibiotics again and it didn’t help quite as it did the first time). I’ve made enough research and willing to start with Vitex, Milk Thistle (and still have to buy somewhere Burdock Root, I would like to add that sometime on the road). according to what I have read and found out might be just what I needed.

    Thanks very much again.
    Wish you well.

    • Tracy says

      Ah yes, the evil BC pill withdrawals!! Yes, I think the vitex and milk thistle should help you…. hope it works, sending you lots of healing love

  100. lynsey says

    loving the blog, i have recently gotten into natural skincare and i feel like that alone helped my skin alot, no more redness im stil left with my general hormonal acne also along the jawline chin around mouth.. neck and back. At the moment on my body acne i use a natural handmade soap wih aloe vera and some other essential oils.. on my face i use babywipes to remove makeup then either the same soap or an almond all natural cleansing lotion i recently purchased. followed by grapeseed oil. I recently started using tea tree oil mixed with water and put on as a toner under the oil. I was wondering if you had any suggestions on other topical items? what do you use to cleanse and moisturize? i have also recently started taking msn zinc vit c and magnesium b6 as i have mild melasma from previous acne medication and i feel i have high copper and hormones are for sure out of whack! magnesium and b6 another good vitamin you guys mite wana read into.. it helps alot with stress and pms and to calm you. :)

  101. Shy'rell says

    Do you struggle with e.d. stuff, Tracy? I have since I was about 13 (I’m 26 now) and I’ve just recently started getting acne on my jawline. I was just curious if the lack of nutrition and my birth control are giving me a hormonal imbalance. I’ve been on the same b.c. for 4 years, I’ve never had skin problems, but now (for past year) I’ve been breaking out only on my jawline. I don’t know if my body is naturally going through hormone changes because of my age, or what, but I feel all messed up. My dr. told me I could take the b.c. continuously to avoid periods, so I have for probably 2 years. I don’t take the one week break, but I occasionally have a period anyways (once every 3-6 months). I started having horrible migraines last fall and had to go to e.r. and was completely miserable for months. They’ve eased up a bit, but I’m just happy they’re not 24/7 like they were. So, there’s the acne, migraines, insomnia, anxiety, NO libido, depression, ETC!! Do you think this could be caused by a hormone imbalance? Should I try stopping my b.c.? The idea of that scares me but I’m so tired of being miserable! Thanks for any help or advice, and I’m sorry my thoughts are a little chaotic.

  102. Amanda says

    You’re gorgeous (inside and out)… you can just tell. I’m so happy for you that you are on the right path and that you have shared your story and offered inspiration to hundred probably thousands of struggling adult acne sufferers. I believe god or whatever higher power you believe in gives us illness so that we may become humble and really appreciate beauty when we find our way. Many thanks and may you live a blessed and successful life.

  103. Elizabeth says

    Hi there,
    I’ve been reading about DIM, and it sounds like it is not recommended as a long-term supplement due to the possibility of triggering tumor growth (even though it also shows promise for suppressing growth of some sorts of tumors). How long have you been taking it, and is this a concern for you?
    I have been taking DIM for about a week to see how my body reacts, but I’m not convinced that I want to stick with it.
    Thanks for all the information on your blog.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Elizabeth,
      That’s interesting and a little concerning! – I haven’t heard anything about it triggering tumours. Where did you hear this? Do you have anything you can direct me towards, so I can look into it? So far I can’t find anything about it from a google search

  104. Jordyn says

    Hey Tracy, great post :) So i am really confused about which hormone imbalance is causing my acne. I read symptoms of estrogen dominance and testosterone dominance and they’re almost exactly identical. The symptoms i have that fall in both category are acne, facial and body hair, anxiety, oily skin, mood swings and irritability and many more. It really confuses me because i’m not sure if i am suppose to “fix” the estrogen or testosterone. I had my hormones tested and they are “normal”. Could you please help me out? I don’t want to take the wrong thing and make my acne worse :(

    • Tracy says

      Hi Jordyn,
      Unfortunately it is really difficult to figure out and I don’t even have them all figured out myself. It’s like when one rises, it seems to affect all the other ones too, so I can see why symptoms all seem the same. Anyway, the only way to be sure is to get a saliva hormone test, which are more accurate than blood tests (often people who plainly have hormonal issues get tests done at the doctor that say hormone levels are normal)

      Anyway…. it seems as though DIM (estoblock) does work quite well for women with high testosterone too, I think because by changing the bad estrogens into good estrogens, it positively affects your testosterone levels.

  105. Janet says

    Hi Tracy,

    I wanted to give you an update-

    i’ve been on estroblock for 1.5 months. FCLO for about 1 month and Liv Tox for about 1 month. my chin/ jawline has improved however, I am still not satisfied with the result and not sure if it will really get better in the next months to come if I continue with this routine. I still have small breakouts and unevenness from the rest of the face. What do you suggest?

    thanks in advance!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Janet,
      It took me a full couple of months to see the full difference in my skin with Estroblock, i’d keep at it for a bit longer

  106. Maja says

    I was diagnosed with endometriosis about a month ago and had surgery (laparoscopy) to remove two cysts. After I was prescribed Visanne to help regulate my hormones so endometriosis won’t occur again. I hate putting synthetic pills into my body and want to get off it asap (I am afraid it would cause more acne) but am afraid that my condition would return. After thinking and researching I came to a conclusion that my endom. is connected with my amalgam fillings being removed and so I already started with a detox regime to help me get rid of heavy metals (am taking chlorella tablets). I also want to regulate my hormones – NATURALLY. Is it safe to come of the pill Visanne and start with Estroblock and Vitex? Or should I continue taking Visanne and begin with Estroblock and Vitex after? I probably shouldn’t take all of this at the same time? I really don’t know what to do. Thank you!

    • Tracy says

      Hi lovely,
      Sorry I don’t really know enough about Visanne and what it does to say whether you should or shouldn’t take it with these supplements. You may need to consult with a natural practitioner or naturopath on that one. Also, check out http://www.cureendometriosis.com if you haven’t already :)

      • Maja says

        Hi Tracy,
        Visanne is a sythetic progestin and it is supposed to prevent that estrogen is the dominant hormone. I think that Estroblock would be great for me but I will do more research. I also asked Fran for her opinion. Thank you Tracy, stay lovely as you are :-)

  107. Crysta; says

    Also just wanted to say! That I flicken love your laugh! It’s so relaxing and the epitome of joy and happiness! I dunno if my acne is hormonal. I have slight bumps under my chin/ neck line and some on my jaw, but mostly at the top of my cheek bones, and middle of cheeks. I’m getting this protocol anyways! Better to try it than knock it!

  108. Michelle says

    I’m so glad I found this! I haven’t had time to read over all of the posts. I went to a naturopath for the first time earlier this week to deal with my chin acne. I also break out on my back/neck. My naturopath and myself are pretty sure its hormonal. I am going to do a saliva test on the weekend. She has also had me start taking B6 and Unda 243, Unda 20, and Unda 1 for my liver. Just curious if you have any info on these Unda numbers?

    • Tracy says

      Hi Michelle,
      No, I don’t know a whole lot about homeopathic remedies, so I don’t have any comments on them. But I’m sure she prescribed them for a reason, so see how it goes! :)

      • michelle says

        Thanks, Tracy! I am so excited to get the results of the saliva test back and see what she recommends! I am so embarrassed in the condition of my chin now so I totally know what everyone is going through! If I would have found your blog a while ago I would have bought all of these items… now since I’m so close to getting my hormone results back I think I’m going to wait and see what my naturopath says.

  109. Vanessa says

    Thank you SO much for this article! Those three herbal supplements have done wonders for me. I’m 33 years old and almost 2 years ago I came off of birth control and I developed mild cystic acne on my face, neck and back. My steady true acne fighting skin regime didn’t work for me. I switched products, tried acupuncture, saw a dermatologist but the results were mediocre at best. Within two days of taking the Vitex, Burdock Root and Milk Thistle supplements I noticed that my inflamed cystic acne stopped being painful and sore. Five days later, no new cystic acne development. And 75% of the small pimples have disappeared. I’m looking forward to seeing my skin in one month. I’m sure my skin will be back to it’s clear and healthy state in no time! The only side effect I’ve had is minor menstrual-like cramps. They aren’t bad and they don’t last long but it’s weird since I rarely have those symptoms while I’m menstruating. Nonetheless, I’m seeing awesome results and will continue to use these recommended supplements! Thanks!

  110. Kelsey says

    Hey Tracy,
    I have found your journey (especially after reading your most recent post about feeling free from this burden, wahoo!) and have been trying to find a balance myself. I’ve been working hard for a little over a year to find something that works for me. Through being gluten free, dairy free, sugar free.. food free! ha I struggle with digestion and swelling, but also the typical “hormonal acne” on my jaw and chin. I’m a little confused on which would be better for me to look into, Vitex or Estroblock.. are they each for something specific, such as one for progesterone and the other.. estrogen? And how do I know which I should be taking? I just am confused on which to try. What would you advise?

    • Tracy says

      Hi Kelsey,
      Well, do you suffer from pretty bad PMS and and irregular periods along with your acne? If so, I’d probably try both of them. If not, I’d probably try Estroblock first and see how that goes

      • Kelsey says

        No, that is definitely a blessing. If anything, Im more irritable and emotional in between getting my period. Thank you, I appreciate all the work you have done and your willingness to share!

  111. Carla says


    I have been taking milk thistle; burdock root since 4/30/2013 and Estro block (three pills a day) since May 15, 2013. Sorry for the TMI, but I got my period on June 3 very light and had no breakouts up until June 14 and June 15, when according to my calendar I was ovulating. I got a huge painful cyst on my face (it is still there) and the other three pimples were small that are pretty much heal by today. Seems like Estro block is working because I was clear for about 2.5-3 weeks

    I will continue taking Estro block for 3 months hopefully I see results.

    The reason for my post is to see if anyone has other suggestions or things, I can take?

    I am 29, my symptoms started in my early 20’s, PMS, oily/dry skin, hypoglycemia, excess face and body hair, extreme hair loss, a lot of fat below my belly button compare to the top of my stomach, but am thin and exercise 4-5 days a week.

    I use to get hot but that is not really happening anymore, I also had a lot of gas and bloat, but following a 80 Paleo diet got rid of that. I drink green smoothies every morning. Overall, when I changed my diet I started feeling a lot better and dropped 15-18 lbs., when back to my high school weight but the cystic acne is still here. I did eat very badly before had many diet drinks and bad carbs between 18-28 years old.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Carla, I say just keep going with the ones you are taking and see if they continue to improve things. And then maybe add more things in… although really I would recommend seeing a naturopath or someone if you really want to know what will work best for you

  112. Nadia says

    Hey Tracy,

    I’m so glad to hear DIM is working for you, and that you don’t have to be so strict about your diet! It really can drive people crazy sometimes, this whole diet-acne thing… Do you think DIM could possibly work for PMS (post-ovulation) breakouts? And also, do you think there is a possibility that there will be a flare up of hormonal acne when one goes off DIM?


    • Tracy says

      Hi Nadia,
      Yes I think DIM could definitely help with those. As for flare up afterwards… I wouldn’t think so, but I can’t actually say for sure! I think it’s more likely that your acne might come back the way it was before, but not cause an actual worse flare (like how birth control does). I can’t really say though – I haven’t stopped using it yet! Fran from High on Health managed to go off of it and her acne hasn’t returned at all, so that’s encouraging :)

    • Tracy says

      I know it’s expensive.. but with supplements, you get what you pay for! I don’t believe Nature’s Way DIM is nearly as good or absorptive, but you can try it. Before trying Estroblock, I tried a cheaper brand of DIM – might have even been Nature’s Way, and it didn’t work at all. But then again, I wasn’t taking enough, I don’t think. Take at least three of four per day to see if it works.

  113. Lyndsey says

    I am so glad I came across this post! I think this could be the answer I’ve been searching for. I have literally tried everything and can’t seem to get rid of my chin acne, and it’s only getting worse with each passing month!

    I just ordered a hormone saliva test kit online, and will be sending it in and getting my results in the next week or two. If my results come back saying there is no hormonal imbalance or issue, should I still proceed with the recommendations you’ve made here? I am worried about both possibilities: that something comes back out of balance, and I can’t treat it for a reasonable price; and nothing being wrong, and being no closer to a solution. So do you recommend doing hormone testing first, or should you try out these suggestions no matter what the test reveals?

    Thanks so much for posting this… you may have just changed my life! :)

    • Tracy says

      Hi Lyndsey,

      Well, I’m not really sure which would be the best course of action for you. I do think it is better to get tested, but only if someone like a naturopath is going to interpret the results for you and give you the right supplements. It’s pretty expensive, but depending on how much trial and error you do, it might save you money in the end on lots of wasted supplements!

      For me personally…. I was interested in trying Estroblock for a long time, but I thought that I should really do a saliva hormone test first (because I had already tried numerous different supplements I thought would help the acne but none of them really did). But then I just decided… ah to hell with it, I’m just going to try it. And it worked! So I never did end up getting a saliva test

  114. Cydney says

    Hi, I am currently Back on birth control because I
    Started getting hormonal acne the last couple of
    Menstrual cycles and it seems to be getting worse.
    I just started on ortho tricyclen two days ago.
    Should I try vitex as well while on birth control?
    Would it effect the birth control? Also, how long should i take
    Thank you

    • Tracy says

      Hi Cydney,
      you shouldn’t take vitex while on hormonal birth control. You can take Estroblock on birth control though

  115. Meghan says

    Hi :-)

    1.) thank you

    2.) I bought the Vitex (liquid)- ill exchange for caps, milk thistle seeds caps and burdock root liquid- they didn’t have DIM without soy (I’m terrified to try it w soy in the outside chance it makes my acne worse) – my Question is: should I start this remedy even without the DIM?

    3.) my Milk Thistle bottle says : soy lecithin is another ingredient- does this mean this one contains soy too & could maybe make acne worse?
    They are all Gaia brand.

    4.) what is a tincture? How do I take these liquid ones?

    I’ll try ANYTHING at this point- thanks in advance I can’t tell you how much I appreciate SOMETHING to try!


    • Tracy says

      Hi Meghan,

      Yes, you can take the remedy without DIM and see how it goes. But I’m looking at the labels of both Estroblock and Estroblock Pro right now on their website, and both don’t seem to have soy in them and are stated to be soy free…. they must have taken the soy out, because I know it definitely used to say it contained soy. So that’s good news for any soy sensitive folks.

      If your milk thistle contains soy, then it contains soy. It might be no big deal at all, but it depends on how sensitive you are to soy. Do you know that you’re really sensitive to soy? You sound rather afraid of it. I mean soy really isn’t good, but if it’s just a tiny little bit and you’re not that sensitive to it, it’s probably no big deal

      A tincture is a liquid solution, usually the infusion of the herb mixed with alcohol to preserve it, like vodka or something. You can put the right dose of the tincture into some water and drink it.

      • Meghan says

        Hey Tracy,

        Thank you. I’ll order it online because my Whole Foods didn’t have those brands.

        I don’t know that I have any sensitivity to soy, I just know it’s a controversial food so I just steer clear because I don’t feel I need it. The fear is from reading that it made someone’s skin worse – I am terrified of my skin getting worse because it’s already costing me so much emotionally. (I know you understand). That was my reasoning – not to even chance it.

        So then, am I able to take all of these in capsule form, rather than make the tincture mixture, or is liquid recommended for a purpose? Also, do we just play around with doses, and how many times per day? I was just going to follow what was quoted in your article above.

        Thanks again. I plan to give it a good 2 months at least. Here’s to a cure!


        • Tracy says

          Hi Meghan,

          Yes, soy is controversial and I don’t actually recommend eating it in general. And it is a common food that people can be very sensitive to and for some people cause acne.

          But you see, for your own wellbeing, please understand that everyone is VERY different in what their bodies react to. If you take ANY food or substance or supplement ever, in the world, that has ever existed, someone on the internet would say that it made their acne worse. I don’t recommend eating a lot of soy, but I also think for most people, a little bit of soy here and there isn’t the end of the world.

          Don’t worry – I totally understand how fucking terrifying acne is, so I know that feeling and why you’re so scared (definitely been there and definitely understand). But unfortunately it just ends up creating this crazy state of mind where you’re afraid and fearful of everything and pushing back against everything, and trying to control instead of letting life flow… it’s just not a way to live :( And the stress of it all counteracts progress anyway…

          Anyway… you can take them in capsule form. I think tincture is generally a little bit more effective/absorptive or something… for dosage, just take what it says on the bottles.

          Good luck Meghan :) sending you lots of love and hugs

  116. Leora says

    Hi Tracy!

    I’m planning on doing milk thistle ( i think its called a liver cleanse right?) so I bought the one from trader joes.. is that ok?
    So I want to make sure is it ok to be taking the vitamins/supplements I take normally while doing milk thistle.. I take primrose oil capsuls, probiotics, and a all in 1 organic vitamin…
    Also from what I know I’m supposed to take 4 milk thistle capsules everyday for 7 days then stop ? Is that what you believe? Please give me your feedback on how and what you think I should do .. how many a day.. for how long.. should I take the other capsules.. anything else I should do while I’m doing milk thistle.. I’m really hoping this will help :( my skin has gotten a lot better since I got off antibiotics and on the vitamins and supplements but its still not clear and i have break outs :( trying to figure out what to do .. at times I feel like i just want to give up and go cry its so hard living with acne face.

    Thank you for everything

    • Tracy says

      Hi Leora,

      I’m not really familiar with using milk thistle as a 7 day liver cleanse? Maybe you can use it that way, but I don’t know anything about it… I thought you were just supposed to take some every day?

      Sending you love x

  117. Jaz says

    So I want to try the Vitex and Milk Thistle for my acne, but I’ve been reading that Milk Thistle can mimic estrogen so I’m curious as to why Alexis recommends Vitex along with Milk Thistle as that seems a little counter intuitive to me now…wondering if there’s something I’m missing or if I can take the two together.


    • Tracy says

      Interesting, I’ve never heard of that but I just googled it and looks like some people are saying that! Hm, I don’t know, I can’t say if that’s true or not or if it’s a concern, after all, maybe it mimics good estrogens instead of the bad ones! I don’t know.

  118. Adel-Alexander says

    I’m obviously not going to take this since I’m a boy but… What would happen if a boy were to take those products? ;P

    • Tracy says

      Well, definitely don’t take Vitex. Burdock root and milk thistle you can totally take.

      As for Estroblock, apparently men can take this supplement because men also acquire fake/bad estrogens from plastics and other environmental this and that etc. However, I don’t know whether that is something that affects acne in men? Maybe it does, but I just haven’t personally heard from or about any dude who was cleared up by DIM, so I haven’t recommended it for guys.

      Although, a while ago, I did get an email from a guy who had had a consultation with Fran Kerr, and she told him to take Estroblock for his acne. So maybe there is something to it. I was surprised, and asked him to please please report back and tell me if it worked or not.

  119. Rachel says

    I have recently started 2 new herbs, both the milk thistle and burdock root and now a week later, I have REALLY bad acne all around my chin/jaw. Has anyone else experienced this reaction? Is this my livers way of pushing everything out to the surface? I don’t want to stop them if so. I could stop one and see if it helps, if not, switch to stopping the other. Thanks, your chicken pox looking friend :)

    • Tracy says

      Hi Rachel,
      It’s impossible to know if it’s a reaction or just a detox unless you experiment… it doesn’t sound far fetched that it’s just a detox though

  120. Taya says

    I suffer from a severe hormonal imbalance and it causes cystic acne 2 weeks before menstraul time I brake out with big cyst on my temple my chin my cheeks, since I was 13 I been suffering from regular acne when I turned 25yrs I now suffer with cystic acne I need to see a dermatologist badly but I dont have no insurance so im trying to find natural healthy cheap ways to get rid of cystic acne at least slow it down. I take flaxseeds oil they say that helps with hormone imbalance problems but I dont see any results I still continue to brake out I spoke to a pharmacists about this problem, the pharmacist told me its just something your body has to go thru its changing he didnt get pacific in details what he ment by that but im tired of acne nobody in both sides of my family suffer from acne only me when the cyst leave they leave black ugley marks since im lightskin the dark marks looks very bad I just want to walk around with a paperbag over my face the dark marks are called hyperpigmentation scars I want to be over this chapter dealing with acne im getting to old for this I was hoping once I hit to a certain age range it will stop but nope I continue to have cyst popping up on my face I cut out all dairy and sugary sweets I drink lots of water and even with all that I still continue to brake out I dont know what to do anymore im lost for words I am now desperate for some help with this acne problem its runing my life how can I get a career when my face looks like horriable I cant even look at my face in the mirror nomore I walk by people with my head down because my face looks so bad from the cystic acne it has ruined my self esteem completely I read alot of articles on cystic acne and a few articles said no matter how much medicine you take there no cure for cystic acne it will slow it down but you will continue to once in awhile brake out I wouldve thought all the money you spend going to the dermatologist you shouldnt have brake outs at all I just want to be able to live a normal life without cystic acne I can deal with regular acne but not cystic acne its horriable it hurts my face im constantly in pain it looks aweful its not good at all

    • says

      Hi Taya,

      I’m so sorry to hear you’re struggling so much :(
      Believe me, I know how it feels! 

      Apart from diet, have you tried any other lifestyle improvement stuff? For example, I think that it‘s pretty important to move your body regularly (you can do yoga, go running, swimming or on a long walk each day, try to avoid elevators and avoid to take the car/bus/subway when you can walk or ride your bike instead.

      In addition, you could try to work on your stress levels. Stress is hugely toxic to our bodies and our skin:

      And then, where you get acne on your face, might also give you some clues about what the root cause of it may be:

      Have you ever tried raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar as a facial treatment? It‘s pretty inexpensive, and I found it was really helpful when my acne was extremely bad. On the contrary to the article I linked below where it‘s suggested as a toner, I just let the ACV-water mixture sink in for about 30 secs – 1 min and washed it off immediately afterwards. I have very sensitive skin and this way it‘s far less drying and doesn‘t provoke any kind of redness at all. Yet, a very small amount of vinegar will still remain in your pores to keep them clean while killing off bacteria, evening out your skin tone and structure and balancing your sebum production (at least a little bit):
      Apple cider vinegar is chemically related to glycolic acid, which is often used in skin remedies to treat acne. Glycolic acid reacts with the upper layer of the epidermis, weakening the binding properties of the lipids that hold the dead skin cells together. This in turn allows your skin to be mildly exfoliated, exposing new and fresh skin cells. Just google it to find further information. Try it! And stick with it for a while. It‘ll take AT LEAST 2 weeks until you‘ll see any results.

      Please do not give up! Continuity is key. Healing goes in waves, it’ll get worse, then better, then you might break out again as your body clears. However, I‘m sure that your skin will heal and that it will stay clear in the end. YOU CAN DO IT!!! Please believe in it. 😉

      And please believe in yourself. 😉
      You‘re awesome!!!

    • Estycki says

      I’m going to suggest something entirely different. Your post was very sad and negative, look up The Secret or Abraham Hicks and Law of Attraction.

  121. Rachel says

    Taya, I GET IT. I understand. Tracy’s site has been a huge help to a lot of us on here. Take time to search her blog and read other’s advice. You can try the Estroblock, Vitex herb, and some of the other herbs Tracy suggests on this site. Of course, it is best to see a naturopath first, but hey, if you want to just start and try 1 thing at a time, you could. Also, try colorless aloe vera, it seems very healing for the scars and doesn’t break me out. Best of luck to you.

    • says

      Hi Tricia,

      Estrosmart contains a much lower amount of DIM.
      However, it also contains Calcium d-glucarate, which might be of help for balancing your hormones (excess estrogen and testosterone).

  122. Nicole says

    hello!! omg i really hope this video saves my life with my cystic acne! i have tried so many things as well so i am hoping this is finally the cure!! what brand of liv-tox, estroguard and burdock root do you suggest?

    • says

      Hi Nicole,

      Liv-Tox is already the brand name.

      Also, there is a quotation right above in the article containing brand suggestions:

      “I like to use liquid tinctures for the milk thistle and burdock. I love HerbPharm brand. I recommend three times a day for each, away from food. I like to to do ten days on and three days off.”

  123. Aubrey says

    Hi Tracy!

    I have stumbled across your blog and just love this post about hormonal acne. I was wondering if you know if the supplements you recommend are okay to take while breast-feeding? I’ve struggled with acne on my chest and back my whole life and nothing seemed to work. When I got pregnant it completely went away and for those nine months of pregnancy my skin was amazing! Obviously my acne is hormone related. Now that I’m no longer pregnant the acne has come back and I would love to start taking the supplements you recommended but wanted to make sure they were safe for breast-feeding moms like me :-) Any advice you have would be greatly appreciated!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Aubrey :)
      Hmm well after doing some research it looks like there isn’t enough known about the effects of DIM during pregnancy/breastfeeding so they advise not to use it. Vitex, apparently it is used during breastfeeding by some, but still they don’t know the effects so advise against it. Milk thistle… I think generally is thought to be safe while breastfeeding, but others apparently disagree. Sounds like burdock root is safe. I would visit a naturopath if possible to see if they have recommendations on safe supplements to take for your hormones while breastfeeding

      • Aubrey says

        Thanks for the info Tracy! I’ll definitely be doing some more research and looking into visiting with a naturopath. I’m not sure if I have one in my town, but I’ll try to find one :)

  124. Anna says

    I ways wondering about estroblock. Will it do anything Else to your body? I read that men can take it to get rid of man boobs. But Will it also decrease breast size for Women? Cause i rather need the opposite :)

    • Tracy says

      Hi Anna – I would say it’s doubtful that it would shrink your chest, but I guess I don’t know. I suppose that would depend on whether or not much of your breast growth had to do with fake/bad estrogens that estroblock gets rid of (what comes to mind is .. like.. you know when some women get on the pill and their breasts grow a lot? I suppose due to the fake estrogens in the pill? So theoretically if you experienced a lot of growth due to bad estrogens in the pill or just through the environment, then I guess Estroblock could potentially reduce the size of your breasts)……. in short, I have no idea but if it makes you feel any better, I am pretty flat chested and my boobs definitely didn’t get any smaller since taking Estroblock (I also haven’t had any other side effects)

  125. Jenny says


    Do you use a liquid form of burdock root or a pill form? Is there any brand you’d recommend in particular?

  126. Caitlin says

    Hi Tracy!
    Congrats again on your marriage!

    I am almost out of Liv-Tox and was getting ready to order more, but Amazon is listing that it is currently unavailable and not sure when it will come in again. I emailed RxBalance to see if they would recommend another site to order from. In the meantime, I was wondering if you had a trusted site you order it from?

    Also, having the same issue for Vitex? Amazon is only showing it be sold from external sites. Any recommendation for a trusted site.


  127. Caitlin says

    Hi Tracy!
    Congrats again on your marriage!

    I am almost out of Liv-Tox and was getting ready to order more, but Amazon is listing that it is currently unavailable and not sure when it will come in again. I emailed RxBalance to see if they would recommend another site to order from. In the meantime, I was wondering if you had a trusted site you order it from?

    Also, having the same issue for Vitex? Amazon is only showing it being sold from external sites. Any recommendation for a trusted site?


  128. Taya says

    I think I finally found a cure for my imbalanced hormones problem 85% of my face is clear once I started using estro block I only been using estro block for a month so im not surprised around menstrual time I still seeing 2 cystic acne bumps poppings up but thats it, im also taking Burdock root as well 3 time daily with water the good news is im not braking out with cystic acne so bad like I used too but even though im still braking out with 2 small cystic bumps they still leave ugley scars on my face I just cant wait till the cystic acne goes away completely so my skin can get back healing also I wish that estro block would give you more tablets then just 60 tablets maybe 80 tablets so it can last you for a month in a half im not complaining because estro block is really helping me so if i gotta pay the money once a month just to keep my skin clear using estro block then that fine its worth every cent because if i did anything else like went to a doctor it wouldve cost me more money that I cannot afford thankyou to everyone who refered me to try estro block and burdock root yall are the best!!

    • Tracy says

      Hey Taya, that’s awesome! Great to hear Estroblock is working so well for you :) I agree, I really wish it wasn’t so expensive, but man… I don’t care. I find for me it’s more than worth it because it works so well

  129. Leora says

    Hi TRACY! Hope your doing well beautiful!

    I ordered estro block regular and been taking it for about 2 weeks now.. 2 a day ( in the mornings) do you think it makes a difference when you take them?

    Ok so I didnt really see any effects but im staying patient.. i got annoyed tho so i called the company and the person who was on the phone ( she uses and knows alot about the product and everything) she said she rly reccmonds the pro and it works much better.. so now i got the estro block pro and im going to start that tmrw..

    I wanted to know why you dont take the pro and if you reccemond it ? also how long did it take for you to see results… its so hard to be patient..

    Do you reccemond that i take the estro block along with burdock root would that help?? i was taking that but stopped since i started estro.. is the estroblock good in combo with other things .. ?? ( im already taking panathic acid.. b complex, a rly good probiotic and a rly good multi vitamin.. ( i stopped taking the vitex and milk thistle.. what do you think should i add them back in?

    also are you still taking estro block and do you think youll ever stop? like are we supposed to take this stuff our whole life ? :( its all so expensive im just thinking will i have to do this all my life? ( once i do get compltyl clear)

    sorry for all my questions and being all over the place.. i really appreciate all your help tracy, YOU ARE AMAZING..

    • Tracy says

      Hi Leora,

      I’m going to post an article next week that addresses a bunch of these questions…

      As far as how long it took, taking three per day of the regular, it took like 2 or 3 months to see its full effect. I actually did switch to the Pro a while ago and do think it’s more effective.

      Don’t worry, be patient :)

  130. Estycki says

    Hi, just wanted to share I tried Estroblock PRO (I bought one container) and took 4 a day (two in the morning and two in the evening). I wasn’t sure if it’d work and if I should buy more so I took a high dose to see as best results as possible. In less than two weeks my skin was FLAT. I was stunned that my jawline breakouts HALTED. At the same time I was still taking I3C (doctor prescribed) for my hormones and wasn’t aware it was the same thing so the dose was even higher. I was so excited but RAN OUT after two weeks (because I took 4 a day!) and had to wait for a couple of weeks until more arrived and in the meantime started having minor breakouts. Once it arrived (I bought like, 4, because I don’t care how much it is, if it works then I’ll pay the price… which if you think about it, isn’t much!). And again, after less than two weeks, FLAT SKIN. My skin is still a bit blotchy and scarred, but very slowly healing. I am about to get my period, and I did break out a teeny weeny bit on my jaw, but each period it seems to be better than the last. Even my family was like HEY your skin is looking good! So WOW this is the magic bullet cure for me!!! Hoping it lasts!
    I continue to take 4 because I have lost 40 pounds, but I have been struggling with that last 10 pounds / tire around the waist and the creator claims that this helps with that. I’ll let you all know 😉

  131. Taya says

    I was actually thinking about switching to estroblock pro I heard its much stronger then the regular estro block only reason why I didn’t try it cause I thought that might be a little to strong I have a question how long does estro block takes to stop the cystic acne all together? 1 month 2 months before I really start seeing results? Also do you think I should up the dosage up to 3 tablets a day? Only reason why I haven’t upped the dosage of estro block is because the pills will run out faster

  132. Leora says

    Thanks so much for your response Tracy.. really looking forward to read that article !

    Do you mind me asking if you are still taking estro block and do you plan on taking it forever…? or for how long?
    I cant help but to think will I have to take this forever… when can i stop?

    do you take the estro block in combination with something else?
    Do you have an article that says what your taking or more about your personal vitamins you’ve taken.. and for how long each.. ?

  133. NS says

    Is Estroblock same as roaccutane? Does it have side effects like dryness or not to be taken when pregnant? Do any one have to do any pre tests before taking these supplements?

    • Tracy says

      Hi there,
      No it’s nothing at all like Accutane. It’s a natural compound found in broccoli that works with your liver metabolize toxic estrogens that you get from stuff like plastic and other things in our environment. You don’t need blood and liver monitoring, it doesn’t make your skin dry, it doesn’t have any side effects. They haven’t done enough studies on DIM during pregnancy so they don’t recommend you take it while pregnant simply because they don’t know, but I’m willing to bet $$ it does not deform your baby like Accutane does!

  134. Stacey says

    Hello! Thank you for this info. I am struggling with acne since going back on the pill. The ONLY reason I am on the pill is to keep my ovarian cysts from growing larger. I am desperately wanting to go off the pill to help my face, but I am hoping to have a child at some point too and need an ovary for that! HELP!

  135. Aly says

    Hi, Tracy.

    I’m currently on birth control pills (It’s actually Yasmin) and Doxycycline for over 2 months now. The combination is working really well on my skin. Been pimple free for almost a month already and I’m sooooo happy. I just want to seek your guidance on taking Estroblock. Can I take it while on bcp as Im also concerned on the the not so good side effects of it or start weaning off and be on Estroblock instead? I actually have a PCOS and Endometriosis. While bcp addresses my PCOS problem it also affects my Endometriosis adversely because estrogens makes it worse. I know It’s really complex but I would rather have a clear skin which helps me gain back my self esteem and be off with anxiety attacks and depression brought about by skin breakouts.

    Thank you so much, Tracy. You are truly heaven sent and I really feel grateful for all the helpful advices Im seeing in your blogs. God bless :)

  136. Christina says

    Hey Tracy,

    I’ve been struggling with acne since getting off BC 2 years ago and was at my breaking point when I randomly saw your YouTube video. I followed up with this article and just wanted to send a huge thank you! It’s not 100% but at least in comparison to previous months its considerably better. Just was curious how long you have been taking the DIM & other supplements? Also do you take anything to help with PMS? Thanks for all the of the helpful info too :-)


    • Tracy says

      That’s awesome :)
      I’ve been taking Estroblock for about a year.. Liv-tox for about… maybe 9 months. I don’t take vitex, because those work well enough for me on their own.

      PMS … well DIM or Vitex should both have a positive effect on PMS symptoms, depending on which one works better for your body

  137. Sydney says

    Okay. I am only 13 years old, and I only get hormonal acne. My mouth, chin, and jawline area is the only place i break out, and it’s bad. No one else in my grade breaks out where I do. I can’t find any remedies because its all for ADULT female hormonal acne. Ugh.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Sydney,
      I’m sorry to hear you’re suffering. Try cutting out dairy, it can often have a big impact on hormones during teenage years

      • Sydney says

        I don’t eat a lot of dairy anyways… Does it have anything to do with the fact that I’m very athletic and I sweat a lot?

  138. Ryan Brooke says

    Hi tracy,
    Been following you for a few months now. I love the acne-free pic you posted with your doggie– so cute! Anyway, been dealing with the hormonal acne stuff for the past 10 months and want to scream!!!!!! I have PCOS and to make a long story short (since I know you get a lot of this) I went off birth control and I broke out in cystic acne all over my body ahhhh!!!!! See, I’m screaming!!!!! Ugh it sucks!!! Okay, so anyways, started using natural progesterone cream 5 months ago and it helped with a acne a bit but not completely and my skin still sucks without pounds of makeup. I did try Vitex for 2 months after I quit the pill and had the most normal period of my life but then like an idiot I switched to the progesterone.

    I am currently taking Spironolactone, Vitamin D, DIM, and Fish Oil Omega 3s, and progesterone cream. I really want to go back on the Vitex but I’m scared as to go through another complete body break out again!!! What’s the best way to wean off Progesterone cream and take the Vitex? Anyone else have experience with this?? Thanks!

    Ryan <3

  139. rachel says

    Hello–I am 20 years old and have been taking birth control for about 4 years because of acne. I also take antibiotics and use a retinol prescribed by my dermatologist (for about 4 years as well). My skin was almost perfect until until this summer. I eat pretty healthy…I limit my sugar, gluten and dairy and eat a lot of fruits and veggies and protein. I actually have never eaten this healthy before. I am also becoming more active and workout 3-5 times a week. But, recently my skin has become horrible! I have lots of bumps and whiteheads only on my chin and around my mouth. My derm recently changed my retinol and antibiotics but I have seen no changes yet. I have been curious about trying vitex and estroblock. I have also read about evening primrose oil? Any suggestions or ideas? Would I need to stop taking birth control if I go on these pills?

  140. Jessica says

    Hi Tracy,
    I am 24 years old, and have had a constant struggle with acne and have done multiple things to be rid of it. Nothing has worked so far, and I saw this article on Estroblock and thought I would give it a shot. I am really hoping that it works for me as it did you, but I have been on it for about a week now and every day since starting it, my face has gotten SO worse!!!! I have huge bright red painful acne all over my face, but especially my jaw line, chin, and cheeks. It has NEver been this bad and it is SO embarrassing and painful!! Should I stop taking it, have you heard of ppl getting worse acne before it gets better while on Estroblock?? Not sure if I should keep taking it or stop!! Please help :/

    • Tracy says

      Hi Jessica,
      Yes, actually it’s likely because it’s detoxing your liver that you’re experiencing that… like a detox breakout, in which case it should pass. If this is the case, you might want to slow down.. maybe switch to the regular version with one a day and work your way up, or stop taking it and slowly begin some liver herbs like milk thistle first. Start slow with that too, or you might have the same effect

  141. Meredith says

    Hi Tracy. Thanks for this helpful information.

    I just purchased Liv-A-Tox—a link was provided in the first comment—because Liv-Tox was out of stock.
    However, are you sure these products serve the same purpose?


    Or do you think it is best just to find Liv-Tox instead?


    • Tracy says

      Hi Meredith :)
      Well they’re supposed to do the same thing, but I recommend Liv-tox because I use it and was recommended to me by my naturopath. I can’t attest to the quality or effectiveness of the Liv-A-Tox, but it might be just as good. I don’t know for sure, sorry!

  142. Kati says

    Thank you for your post. Been dealing with hormonal acne for a while
    Now. I am going to try these three things. Although it seems that milk thistle is not safe while nursing. Do you know if the other two are safe? I have a 5 month old and I am hoping to start this regiment minus the milk thistle. Thanks!

  143. Shannon says

    I love what you do here, Tracy! I just wanted to add that people with ragweed allergies should avoid milk thistle. I was excited to try something to help my liver function (I was on a harsh medicine for years to help with headaches that really messed with everything else in my body, including my liver), but didn’t think about how milk thistle and ragweed are related plants and that I have a ragweed allergy! Luckily, I only took one capsule without any severe adverse effects before I figured out the link. 😉 So, if you have a ragweed allergy, avoid milk thistle!

  144. Monica says

    Hi Tracy!! This is a great post!! I’m 31 and still battling with hormonal acne, I had it under control while on the pill but I broke out like crazy after quitting, mainly red painful pimples on my chin.
    I read that raspberry leaf tea is recommended to help with hormonal acne and I was ready to order a ton of it (lol), but then I found some articles saying that it contains estrogens or pseudo-estrogens so people with hormonal imbalances should avoid it. I would love to know your thoughts on this, as I was hoping this would be a safe and natural way to help with acne, but that estrogen stuff really scared me. Thank you so much for all the help you give out in your posts, please keep it up!!

    • says

      Hi Monica,

      Tracy is without internet access this week, so she asked me to reply to the comments on her blog.
      As far as I know, raspberry leaf tea is full of vitamins, minerals, and plant compounds that help the body to detoxify extra hormones. Some people use it for general purification of skin and blood. However, I read about the concern that red raspberry might act like estrogen. So, if your main problem is estrogen dominance, you should try something else like detoxifying your liver and (maybe) taking a DIM supplement (estroblock). Exercise and a balanced diet including lots of fiber (fresh veggies, fruits and whole grains) and probiotics (yoghurt made from a clean milk source, self-made sauerkraut etc.) will help you to get rid of excess hormones as well.

  145. Rachel says

    I really appreciate you going through all this trouble to help others.
    I was reading online that hormonal acne is related to acne on the chin, which is exactly what my problem is. It’s the type of acne that never fully comes to the surface, but its not milia. At any given time I could have 30 pimples on my chin, but they cannot really be seen. (I know this sounds like a blessing, but believe me its really frustrating.) I truly do believe its from hormones. I also have digestive issues. (I feel like my whole body is falling apart) I also get cramps during the whole month, not just around my period. I went to see the doctor yesterday, and she wants to take a hormone test, but i’ll have to get off my birth control for a month. What will the side effects be of me going off my BC for an entire month? more acne?

    • Tracy says

      Hi Rachel,
      I kind of think that if you are not going to come off and stay off it permanently, then coming off it for just a month is only going to throw your hormones through a loop. Because, well, it does that when you get off it, so you only want to do it once!

  146. Andrea says

    Hi tracey I’m so happy this has worked for you!

    I’ve been suffering with acne for almost ten years now and my mother had acne throughout her 20’s like me. my face was starting to clear up until two years ago when i had a myomectomy for my fibroids . I had one the size of a baseball >. < well after the surgery the doctors had me on a birthcontrol shot that made my acne come back even worse. I just turned 25 and stopped taking antibiotics after going on treatment for 3 months. It was working alright but not enough I was still breaking out badly. After I stopped the antibiotics my face has erupted even worse. To cystic acne mostly around my mouth and jawline with little ones around my forehead and even ears. I'm currently taking herpanacine and a multi vitamin. Would you be able to give me any advice? :/

    • Tracy says

      Hi Andrea – I’m sorry to hear what you’ve been through. I can’t give you too much specific advice, but maybe check with a naturopath to see if the suggestions here would be appropriate for you. I’d also get on some probiotics, and maybe consider a short candida cleanse to negate the effects of the antibiotics that you took

  147. Vicky says

    Hi Tracy,

    Thanks for all the great info and support in this blog, I would like to know abit more about bad and good oestrogen in relation to acne. My acne has always been completely controlled by either dianette or yasmin which i know are the anti androgen pills. I assumed this meant I had too much testosterone in relation to oestrogen. I do not eat any dairy and substitute with soya milk which I again assumed would be good as I was testosterone heavy and any oestrogen would be good.
    However now I am confused as to how this may be bad for my hormonal balance, I am planning on weaning soon, can you advise on estroblock in relation to androgens and testosterone?

    thanks again

    • Tracy says

      Hi Vicky :)

      Take a look at this article, I explain it a bit in there: http://thelovevitamin.com/11514/how-avoid-acne-causing-estrogens/

      “when you have a lot of bad estrogen, testosterone (aka androgens) have to rise to match it. Except the only form of testosterone potent enough to match it is not the happy “good” testosterone responsible for sex drive and other fun things – it’s DHT, the form of testosterone responsible for acne.

      So… in other words… using Estroblock combined with avoiding xenoestrogens lowers the bad estrogen –> lowers your DHT –> gets rid of acne. He confirmed again that it was incredible for men’s acne and teenage acne too, not just us ladies.”

      So basically… Estroblock will naturally improve your good testosterone levels, but bring down DHT and androgens responsible for acne, facial hair, etc :)

    • Tracy says

      Hi Leora – I recommend Liv-tox simply because, well, I use it so I know it’s effective. Plus it’s just straight herbs. And my naturopath recommended it. There are plenty of other liver support supplements you can try, you don’t have to use that one. The one you linked to is pretty different, and it has a lot of ingredients and “vitamins”, which I assume are probably synthetic, but I don’t really know. It might work great, I can’t say!

  148. Ashleigh says

    Just wanted to say a big thank you Tracy! I’ve been having terrible problems with acne over the last 18 months but my diet couldn’t have been improved any more. I’ve been taking Vitex for 3 months, and for the past 5-6 weeks I’ve also taken 1 liver supplement daily & Estroblock twice daily and my skin has cleared up so much! It just keeps getting clearer and more radiant! I can’t believe it! My breakouts have always been the worst in the week before my periods, but the last few months they’ve been much smaller and heal so much faster. Can’t wait for my first month completely (hopefully!) free of the pre-period breakout! Thanks so much!!

  149. Grace says

    Hi Tracy!
    I was wondering when you took DIM and Calcium D Glucarate together what was your dosage of the Calcium D Glucarate?

  150. lynsey says

    Tracy, Im currently being treated by a naturopath for hormone imbalance.. im on a few herbs along with natural progesterone cream.. healthy eating etc. Have been on this for 5 weeks and have notices a good improvement in my clogged pores. Moods seem more stable, libido back after a few months! my poor boyfriend. Still getting one or two painful cysts still. My question is any kind of deep painful cyst is that caused by the hormones? my progesterone is at 50 and my estrogen at 80 so it stil has a little ways to go. Im on DIM also. I was also curious Tracy, apart from all your natural treatments you are on the copper IUD? Do you think this has alot to do with you being clear? i have never been on birth control, so im trying to do this all naturally and im hoping it is possible without the use of something more. Thanks.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Lynsey,
      Yes I have a copper IUD… I wouldn’t say it really has anything directly to do with me being clear… except that I no longer have to mess around with my hormones with hormonal birth control (or in my case, condoms would often break and I’d have to use the morning after pill sometimes, which I feel may have contributed to acne).

  151. lynsey says

    Okay thanks Tracy. I was also wondering when you got tested, did u have low progesterone and that’s why you were put on DIM? and why you weren’t put on a progesterone cream as well like i am? so its possible to balance the hormones without the cream?

    • Tracy says

      Hi Lynsey, actually I’ve never had my hormones officially tested. So I don’t know if I have or had low progesterone, and was never on the cream. For raising it.. well Vitex is supposed to help with naturally getting your body to produce more. I’ve also read one of the only ways to raise it is to really reduce your stress levels.

  152. Elise says

    Hey Tracy,

    Thanks for sharing this information.

    I’m sorry if this question has already been asked earlier..

    I got off the pill about 4 days ago, and I’m so scared that my acne comes back…worse.
    (I stopped the pill last summer, and I literally had a trail of acne pimples around my mouth).

    Just to make sure my hormones go out of whack, I started taking vitex and antibiotics for acne (dioxyclyn).
    Now, I want to be sure my acne doesn’t come back so I’m thinking of also trying Estroblock.
    I think I will take vitex for about 6 months, 80 mg twice a day.

    Do you think it’s OK to take vitex AND estroblock?
    How much would you take and for how long?

    Thank you so much!

    • Tracy says

      Yes you can definitely take both together! :) Estroblock – take 3 of regular per day, or two of Estroblock triple, Vitex, just take it as directed on the bottle

  153. Kaira says

    Hello Tracy,

    Thanks so much for all those tips, as also have hormone acne only on my chin, and I have been on birth control for the last 10years. My dermatologist says that there is no cure for acne and for me to stick with the birth control until menopause if I don’t want to break out ( I know it sounds too much). But now I decide to be off of BC for good and I don’t want to spend money with any more doctors. I’m thinking about ordering a saliva hormone test and from there, decide if I start vitex or estroblock. My question is: since my acne is hormone related and it only gets better with BC, I’m taking ortho try cyclen. Which one would you recommend me to start of? Vitex or estroblock? Thanks kaira

  154. Rachel Loth says

    any idea where I can buy estroblock pro triple strength? its unavailable on amazon and I cant find it anywhere online?

  155. Vicky says

    Apparently they do ship internationally to uk but it is expensive , I am gonna try it out and see of its worth it. :) you need to select shipping at checkout and select your country !

    • Tracy says

      Oh, sorry, yes they do ship internationally, I just meant I don’t think you can actually buy it anywhere in the UK unfortunately!

  156. veronica says

    I was currently on birth control for my acne for almost a full year, ten months to be.exact. To be totally honest i felt it was the worst decision i could make. The first three months were great i was clear i had absolutely no side effects it was awesome. Then the fourth month came and i started to get horrible mood.swings, i couldnt sleep, and as the months progressed i kept getting more and more side effects including irregular periods yes they were light but i had constart brown discharge, id get my period 2 almost 3 times on one month and worst.of all i was breaking oit like crazy. I began looking all over the internet for safe ways to get off birthcontrol and kept reading about how peoples acne came back worse. Then i read this article and figure ok i need a strategy. Towards the end of my ten months my body was crying out for help. It was like yhe inner me was begging and pleDing id stop. Everytime id wake up to take it, after putting it in myouth and swallowing, i wpuld get so depressed. I bought vitex dim and a liver detox. As soon as i stopped taking birth control my skin cleared up nice. Its been a month now on tjese sipplemenys and i am as clear as day not one single pimple. My complexion is brighter… I look like me again. Not even the birth control did this for me. Womemn out there suffering from hoomal acne, free yourself. There is hope. Please excuse all of the incorrections in the text i am doing this on my phone. Thanks so much fpr this helpful inspiring blog!

  157. Kadija says

    Hey Tracy! I have hormonal acne and my hormones are all over the place so I recently started Dim from finding out about it on your blog but after a week of taking it, I’m breaking out more than normal! All over my jawline, chin and cheeks :( I just wondered if dim can cause an initial breakout as its getting rid of the excess bad estrogen and it needs to come out somehow? I don’t want to give up on it as I trust your judgement and I really do believe its a good supplement. :)

    • Tracy says

      I’m getting the impression that if DIM is causing you to break out, it’s likely because your liver is congested, so it’s a detox reaction. My suggestion is to maybe stop the DIM and use a liver supplement for a while first to maybe clean things out. You could also try a couple liver cleanse/flush if you are really brave. http://thelovevitamin.com/4604/gentle-liver-support-acne/ – anyway, after you’ve done that, then you can try DIM again and it might go better

  158. Kadija says

    So you don’t suggest I continue the DIM and just add a liver supplement like liv-tox to aid the liver at the same time? If its just a detox I don’t mind the extra breakouts for a while if it’s going to eventually clear me! Or do you think it’s best to stop DIM and start with the liver? Thanks for replying Tracy :)

  159. lay kim says

    I have been suffering from acne, weight gain, mood swings, low energy and all the possible symptoms of pcos for 6 mos. When i checked with an endocrinologist and did some lab test in aug 2013, it was confirmed that i have pcos. Since then, I have been taking metformin every night and doing cardio and strength trainings, avoided fast and processed foods. I eat healthily more on veggies, brown rice, whole wheat breads and fruits. Because of my perseverance and discipline, i have lost weight, however i cannot get rid of these acnes on my chain. Please help me and give me some useful advice on how to deal with them.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Lay Kim, way to go, good for you for losing the weight. Are your other symptoms clearing up, just not the acne? Your skin might just be the last one to go and will eventually clear up, sometimes the changes happen underneath before they reach the surface. Otherwise, you can try some of the supplements in this article that might give you a boost. I’d also suggest checking out PCOS Unlocked if you are interested, full of great information for natural treatment of PCOS/acne. Ad for it on the sidebar there —>

  160. Nia says

    Hi Tracy,
    Your articles have been very enlightening. Thanks for sharing information with fellow cysters :)
    I was a little confused about my condition and am hoping to get some help on this forum.

    I just turned 30 and have never been on BC. I always broke out with a couple of acne just before my periods, but it never had been a major concern for me. Last year I developed cystic acne on my chin and lower jaw and these ones do not budge, I keep getting them and might get some *more* before/during periods. A couple of months ago, I have started getting acne on my forehead as well. I have always had a muscular built, and facial hair and a strip of hair below my navel. I have a small frame but my breasts are smaller in comparison. Other than this, I don’t have any other hormonal imbalance symptom.. my periods are very regular and I ovulate regularly (I have been monitoring my ovulation, since hubs and I are planning for a baby next soon).

    Long story short, I am confused which hormone is out of whack for me.. so I started a milk thistle supplement alongside EPO. EPO did seem to soothe my acne a bit… but then I introduced Salmon oil. Only after a couple of days on Salmon oil, my skin went out of whack.. and I broke out at a lot of places on my face. (I have to admit I have been stressed out lately due to my skin)…but I stopped the Salmon oil, after reading many other women breaking out due to fish oil too.

    My question is, do you reckon I should get on Estroblock despite regular periods and ovulation? Or should I wait and watch what EPO is doing to me. I have an appt with a gynecologist soon in the hope she could consult me for hormonal tests. I can’t seem to find a naturopath listed on the internet in Nashville, TN ): (I am new to the country too, so it doesn’t help)

    Hoping for some advice !!Thanks.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Nia, yes you can totally use Estroblock even if you have regular periods and ovulation, and aren’t sure of the hormonal imbalanece you have. I have pretty regular periods myself and it helped a lot. Estroblock is quite safe to just give it a shot, since all it’s doing is helping a particular detox pathway in your liver create better estrogen metabolites.

        • Nia says

          Hi Tracy,
          Just wanted to update that my EstroBlock arrived very late, and so I just continued having milk thistle and evening primrose oil supplements. I am soooo happy to share that all my flares have cleared up with a month on these. My skin has a glow with some acne scars :) but I can live with these LOL. I haven’t started Estroblock yet. Do you know if I can take estroblock even when I get pregnant?

            • Nia says

              Hey Tracy,
              I am a little lost here. I stopped taking Evening Primrose Oil (which had earlier smoothed out my acne), and started on Estroblock triple strength. After a week on estroblock, the painful cystic acne has returned :( specially on my lower jaw. Do you think this is a detox phase and I should just continue estroblock and wait for it to show it’s magic or should I go back to evening primrose OR just take them together 😀 ?

              • Tracy says

                Hi Nia,
                Well, it could be a detox phase, it’s hard to know for sure. Have you had other symptoms too? Also there is a chance that the evening primrose rose was working really well for you, and it’s actually stopping that that is causing the breakouts, not Estroblock. But I don’t know, sorry. Normally I would recommend making sure you were also on a liver support supplement, but you already are

  161. Shimra says


    So I have been taking vitex, milk thistle, burdock root, vitamins a, d, and zinc and have been using turmeric powder topically. It’s only been half a month or so and my back has been clearing up, however my face has been waxing and waning. I was curious if this is normal? I figured the back is probably clearing up faster because there are not as many years of toxins stored up in that area of my skin. I am assuming the waxing and waning on my face is because one layer of skin will clear but then the layer underneath still has toxins? Am I way off in thinking that? My skin certainly feels a lot healthier even if it doesn’t look like it is consistently clearing up. Just want to make sure I am on the right track here.

    Thank you very much!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Shimra, waxing and waning always signals to me that it’s detox. Your description definitely sounds that way, and that you are on the right track! :)

      • Shimra says

        Thank you. Part of me is curious as to whether or not I should be more proactive hormonally. I have ehlers danlos (it’s a rare condition so no one ever knows about it) which causes most of the systems in my body to have issues. I used to have a growth hormone deficiency which has supposedly been cleared up but I KNOW there is something wrong with my hormones. My acne is mostly white heads, black heads, and cystic and flares up even more around my periods. My periods are incredibly heavy and irregular. There have been periods of time where I have gotten a period every week. My weight gain is specifically in my upper thighs and love handle region. All of this signals a hormonal issue but nothing shows up on tests and I don’t have any signs of cysts in my ovaries so in theory pcos would be out. I just wonder if my body is producing appropriate amounts of hormones but not absorbing them properly due to the deterioration in the pathways of my body.
        I know that is a lot of information, but I guess what I am asking is if you know of any conditions that can cause acne and irregular periods aside from pcos and thyroid issues. I am also curious if there are any other signs of hormonal imbalance that might help clue me into exactly what’s wrong? If you have any ideas that would be helpful.

        Thanks so much for this site.

        • Tracy says

          Ah, well it’s hard to say… the usual profiles are the PCOS, thyroid, or an estrogen dominance thing. But it *seems* like all and every hormonal issue seems to cause acne… it’s very confusing indeed. Not sure what the prognosis is for you, sorry

  162. Allison says


    Do you happen to know if Estroblock will affect the effectiveness of a copper (Paraguard) IUD? I would love clear skin but I have all the little ones I can handle!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Allison, I don’t see any reason it should affect that. It doesn’t even affect the effectiveness of hormonal birth control. I have a copper IUD too and have taken Estroblock for over a year.. so far no babies!

  163. nain says

    hey !! dr hasprescribed me the diane 35 for the disturbed hormonal problem and i’ve seen so many posts on net regarding diane’s side effects … and im afraid of using it … what do i do for my hormonal acne ?

  164. Lilian says

    Hi Tracy,

    In reading your article on 3 Steps to Beating Adult Hormonal Acne in
    Females, do I have to take all 3 herbal supplements ? Can I just take
    Vitex & milk thistle ? And skip burdock root ? Would just the 2 balance the hormones & stop the acnes on chin area ? Please advise & many thanks to this article.

    • Tracy says

      Yes, you don’t have to take all of them. I would recommend the liver supplement with whatever else you take. I only take Estroblock and Liv-tox, not vitex and I only used burdock for a very short while. Those two alone work fine for me. But that’s just me.

  165. says

    It’s great. I have problems with acne, I do not dare leave the house. The others often mocked about the my face. Your information is very useful to me. Thank!

  166. Jean says

    Hi Tracy,

    I wanted to thank you for your in depth review of Estroblock. I bought it on Amazon 3 weeks ago and have been taking it 2x a day for 2 weeks. I am 35 years old and recently started getting painful, cystic acne on my jawline and chin. I had tried everything and spent thousands of dollars, I’m sure. Detoxes, cleanses, topical treatments, oils, cleansers, acupuncture,raw food diet, etc. You name it, I tried it. It just wouldn’t go away. After only 1 week of taking estroblock, I’ve had no new cystic bumps emerge (I always had at least 2-3 at any given point of the month, and then more during my period). The ones I currently had disappeared. All those products that I thought were causing my cystic acne — I can now use. I guess it wasn’t the products after all…it was definitely something internal. I must say, the first 4 days I took the estroblock, I woke up with bad headaches. I’m sure this was the detox effect. Oddly enough, since taking this product, I’m less moody, more relaxed, and sleep better. I think my estrogen imbalance was causing my insomnia as well. I finally feel like there is hope. Thanks again –J

  167. Emma says

    I’ve just wanted to say a huge thank you Tracy, for your website. I had been suffering from acne the last 4 years and was at my wits end when I came across your site. I’m so grateful especially for this article. I started taking estroblock in June of this year and my skin is now clear. For the people reading the comments section (I did religiously), within a month I noticed I no longer got the painful red angry pimples. My skin has been completely clear for the last month. I take 3 pills a day but to be honest some days it was just two. I also think what helped was EFT, whenever I had a breakout I would spiral, feel depressed and stress even more. When I told myself that I love and accept myself even when my skin was at it worse seemed to calm me down and put things in perspective.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Emma, that’s wonderful! So happy the combination of Estroblock and EFT has been doing a number on your acne! Woohoo :)

  168. Sylvia says


    I first came across your website a few months ago when I started to break out really bad after I decided to quit birth control which I had been on for close to 10 years (scary to think). I knew something was up because I started breaking out on my back and shoulders which I had never gotten a pimple on before. It’s been close to a year since I stopped taking BC and my hormones haven’t returned to normal on their own. Over the past few months I have tried FemMed hormonal balance, Evening Primrose Oil, and many others with no luck. Tonight I went out and purchased Burdock Root, Vitex, and Milk Thistle, I’m really hoping this gets me back in order!! Acne can be a bummer.

    The only question I have is what dosage do you take per supplement, or do you follow the directions on the bottle?

    Thanks for all your info!


  169. Chelsea says

    Hey Tracy,

    Thank you so much for your video. I had severe acne about 5 years ago and since then completely changed my diet and lifestyle entirely; I can relate to what you said more than 100%. I feel so happy for you to see how clear you are and how happy you are. I hope that can be me one day soon! I sit here with a broken out face which breaks out during my period and during ovulation, no matter how incredibly I restrict my diet or how much water I drink or how strictly I follow my yoga, cycling, and general exercising goals. I definitely worry about my food and my face for a gigantic portion of every day and eating is stressful. I feel like so much of my energy is wasted on this issue, I feel like I have tried everything. My face has gotten so much better since I was severe but I just can’t seem to get to %100 and it is the most frustrating thing imaginable, especially when I see how my friends with perfectly clear skin eat and drink and live.

    I am going out to get the items you mentioned in this blog post and will have the most positive thoughts that I can.

    Thank you so much and all the best!!!

    <3 Chelsea

  170. elib says

    Hi Tracy,

    I was wondering if its normal to break out initially, from Estroguard and Livtox. I decided to go with EstroGuard, due to soy issue.
    I have been taking both for about three weeks. along with other supplements, FCO, Seabuckthorn berry/seed oil blend caps,Raw B complex, and spirulina. thank you

  171. elib says

    forgot to mention
    Esroguard I am taking is
    Estro Detox by A.O.R Advanced Orthomolecular Research . It had DIM as well. I just read that one lady said here that estrogurad made her weepy. I was wondering if the one i am taking causes this too, since i’ve been a little weepy. Oh boy

  172. Danielle says

    Hi Tracy!
    I am not for sure that I am suffering from hormonal acne, but 90% sure I am. I am just curios if it is safe to take estroblock even if you might not have a hormonal imbalance? Thanks so much!

    • Tracy says

      Hi Danielle, I would say yes because it is simply helping your liver detox bad estrogens into good ones, most people will have some bad estrogens simply due to modern life

  173. MIchelle says

    Thank you SO much for this SITE! I have been struggling with hormonal acne since I got off the pill 10+ years ago! I also have some uneven skin tone with darker areas! I used to have GREAT SKIN! I’m sure some sun exposure hasn’t helped but this is frustrating!
    I am trying a liver support and estroblock on your recommendation. I am working my way to 3 per day (on 2 now)! I am not trying anything else and have started about 3 weeks ago. I am on my cycle now and am still having some breakouts. Inoticed they have increased a little and this sounds nornal for detox? I wanted to see if you had that for the first couple months? I am breaking out a bit in new places so I thought maybe adjusting? No other side effects.

    Just wanted your insight as I am HOPING this helps…it is SO HARD to have acne! As you know…thanks for your help!!!

  174. Kaira says

    Hi everyone

    I just would like to share that I dropped down my estroblock to 1 a day and it’s been working just fine. :))

  175. Angela says

    I was just wondering if you have to be off birth control to take these supplements?
    I’ve read a lot of articles about hormonal acne and also reviews about the pill I’m on causing it but I’m taking it for medical reasons.


    • Tracy says

      Hi Angela,
      According to all the DIM supplement manufacturers, they do not contraindicate taking it with birth control pills, and actually recommend it. With milk thistle supplements, there has never been any recorded case of a pregnancy because of it, but some suggest that because it works on the liver and the birth control pills are processed through the liver that you simply might want to take a milk thistle/liver supplement at a different time of day than the pill just to make sure there’s no interaction there. Vitex, don’t take while on BC pills.

  176. nalika27 says

    Hi Tracy, I must say you are a lifesaver, when ever I feel bad, I just watch one of your videos and I feel a bit better. Anyhow, I am feeling truly desperate at the moment. Namely, I took antibiotics and Accutane a few years ago on separate occasion and they worked well, I was acne free up until this summer when I started breaking out when I was on my holiday in Portugal. Fist I though it was the sunscreen but know I know that was not it. I dont use any chemical stuff on my face just Aloe Vera and Jojoba oil, I am taking Nature`s way Dim (I am from Europe) and Zinck, Vitamin E, Fish Oil and Vit D3.. Well the problem is that I have been taking DIM for about a month, 4 capsules a day, what is a lot for this type of DIM and seem to be getting no where. The mild acne is still there, maybe not as inflamed but still there. I just dont know what else to do, I dont want to startAaccutane again. Should I hang in there or is this not the solution for me? I am 27 by the way. Thank you so much in advance. All the best

    • Tracy says

      Hi there,
      I can’t guarantee that DIM is going to be the answer for everyone or that it will work for you. Although took two months for me to really see a difference with DIM, so maybe give it a little more time. Also, next week I’m coming out with a brand new ebook about female hormonal acne that greatly expands/clarifies and refines this article and the subject of treating hormonal acne, so if you’re interested, check it out.

      • nalika27 says

        Hi Tracey, so I definitely must reply.First of all, thank you for your answer. I have to say that my skin is now almost completely clear. I am not sure what is working for me, because I also take vit. B and other minerals besides DIM. Maybe it is DIM that is working, I dont know. I am taking really low doses, not more than recommended daily intake for vit. B, E, A and Mg. So nothing special. I would really like to thank you for showing me that one can get rid of acne naturally and without hurting your body with prescription drugs. I really appreciate your work and effort. Keep it up. You truly change lives.

  177. Sara says

    Hi Tracy :) I’ve been a reader for a while now and your site brings me so much comfort. Thank you, infinitely! I’m wondering if you or anyone here has some insight. I believe my chin/mouth acne is hormonal. It’s a heck of a lot better than it was (I’ve been taking DIM and burdock root for 2 months now) but I keep having issues with this one particular spot. On my lower right chin, like the size of a quarter, feels inflamed under the skin. It’s discolored but not red. Every week or so I’ll have a spot emerge from it. My skin is clear otherwise. Sometimes it feels like it’s healed, but it’s more like remission. It’s not a cyst…what could it be?

  178. Santerra Holler says

    Hi Tracy! i just came across this article and it seems like the Holy Grail! I feel like I’ve done everything and nothing has worked. I’ve been a plant based, vegan for years, I’m huge into working out, i focus on not stressing…blah blah blah. Nothing! I’ve always wondered if my acne was hormonal but all the science behind it is overwhelming. I’m pretty pumped to try this “protocol” after I do some research behind the long term affects. Anyways, would you suggest using the products as directed on the bottle? And how long would you say it takes to see results? I tend to be inpatient and having a relative timeline helps me not stress about it. Thanks for all your help!


    • Tracy says

      Hi Santerra,
      Yes, as directed, except Estroblock I recommend at least three of the regular strength, except start off slow and work your way up to that. It took me two months to notice a big difference with estroblock… vitex can take up to three months to really see a difference.

    • Tracy says

      Hi Santerra, yes as directed, except I recommend three per day of the regular estroblock, except work your way up to that slowly. Estroblock can take up to two or three months for some people to see a difference, Vitex up to thre