Can the menopause cause sun sensitivity?

The A Vogel site I regularly watch touched on this.  A really good topic to bring up, because a lot of women find that during their menopause, they suddenly start to burn in sunshine, or get itchy rashes. 

It’s known that falling oestrogen can affect the skin in lots of different ways, not only making the skin drier but also a little bit thinner, so it’s going to be much more sensitive to sunlight which means it’s going to burn quicker, be more reactive and take longer to heal if you do get sunburnt.

The skin also produces less melanin which determines our skin colour and when you tan, your skin goes a bit darker.  Pigmentation helps to protect your skin from getting burnt further and if you produce less of this you are going to burn much quicker in a shorter space of time.

Women also find that they get more sunspots or blotches and marks on their skin, sometimes called liver spots which can be very dark due to too much sun exposure.

It’s very important to look for natural sunscreens for skin’s protection and that’s because commercial sunscreens tend to have a huge number of chemicals in them, particularly oxybenzone, so if your skin’s thinner or dryer, it’s also going to be more sensitive to anything that you put on it.

Natural sunscreens work just as well as commercial ones and obviously are going to cause less irritation to your skin, unless you have a specific allergy that you’re probably already aware of.

Vitamin D –  try and have some time out in the sun before you put your sun protection on.  The only way our skin can produce vitamin D is to get direct sunlight so choose a safe time to expose your skin for about twenty minutes, but I wouldn’t recommend the midday sun because that’s when the most damage is likely to occur in the shortest space of time.

If you’re swimming, apply your sun cream every couple of hours and try and get a water-resistant one.

Finally, check any medications that you’re on because some may increase skin sensitivity, perhaps certain antibiotics, blood pressure medication, or anti-inflammatory medication.  So if this something that’s just suddenly appeared, and you recently started a new course of medication just check the patient information leaflet.

There’s some great information here, isn’t there?  Now I obviously want to promote Tropic’s sun protection creams and we have one range for swimmers and sports-types and one for those who prefer to bask.  They’re all toxin-free and present no harm to aquatic life, or any other life for that matter (certified by PROTECT LAND + SEA)!  Please check pages 59-61 of our GLOW magazine here.

Stay safe! 🙏

I’m not a qualified clinician, dietician, psychologist, or anything! I write based only on my own experiences, personal views, and research into menopause, and the fact that I want to help women. Please always seek the advice of a professional. Jacky Wood

Want to book a half-hour chat with me about your menopause? Go to to select a time and date. Let’s talk!

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