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Everything You Should Know About Mirena Cystic Acne!

Mirena is an intrauterine device (IUD) used by women as contraception. IUDs generally come in two forms: one is hormonal IUD, and the other is copper IUD. Mirena is a hormonal IUD.

So, what is Mirena Cystic Acne?

Mirena cystic acne is a type of acne that presents deeply embedded lesions that are often painful and can cause scarring. An abnormality in the production of hormones by the ovaries (reproductive organs found in females), adrenal glands (hormone producers and metabolism regulators of the body), and pituitary gland (master gland of the human body that perform regulatory functions of the body) causes it.

Let’s have an in-depth view of the causes of Mirena acne.

Table of Content

Causes of Cystic Acne

Cystic acne is caused by the inflammation on the skin leading to pus-filled nodules termed cystic acne. 

It is generated on the skin when sebum and dead cells of the body, usually the face, get blocked. This affects the skin on the front, chest, and back. It is also known as nodular acne or deep acne. Following are the few main causes of cystic acne:

  • Hormonal imbalances in women during puberty, conceiving, and menopause.
  • Taking certain medications such as progestin (for birth control) or spironolactone (for high blood pressure)
  • Ectopic pregnancy (implantation and growth of egg other than the central cavity of uterus).
  • Having the birth control pills to avert pregnancy

Mirena Coil Cystic Acne

The Mirena coil or also known as Mirena IUD is inserted into the female’s uterus. The loop is a T-shaped body consisting of a steroidal core and a string. This string is accessible in the vagina for easy removal of Mirena when needed. 

The series of the Mirena coil consists of levonorgestrel and silicone mixture that make 52 g of the total mass of the series. It may give you the worst acne of your life.

Mirena IUD Cystic Acne: Details

Acne, particularly cystic acne, is one of the significant mirena coil side effects. The seriousness of acne by IUD can vary from one person to another, and it can be treated using creams, ointments, or oral medicine.

  • Mirena IUDs release a hormone called levonorgestrel into the uterus, which works as a progestin hormone. 

This artificial hormone sticks to the walls of the uterus and helps prevent sperm entry into the uterus and its insertion into the egg.

  • Mirena can cause severe acne in some cases, which may require treatment with topical medication or antibiotics. Some women have also experienced hair loss from using this IUD, and painful acne scars are also possible. 
  • Mirena can also cause cysts in the ovaries and increase androgen hormones that can lead to acne-related complications like oily skin or hair loss.

Other Side Effects of Using Mirena

Early Mirena insertion can cause excessive bleeding or spotting during the first few weeks. Headaches, abdominal pain, back pain, or ovarian cysts are also common.

Mirena and Weight Gain

Mirena, being a hormonal IUD, can cause weight gain and acne in some cases. However, copper IUDs, or non hormonal IUDs, rarely cause weight gain or not at all, depending on the person’s lifestyle.

Pain Associated With Mirena Insertion

Mirena is a thin tube and doesn’t cause discomfort if you have experienced birth before. 

But, mild to moderate discomfort and pain could be caused for females who haven’t ever given birth.

Skincare Routine for IUD Acne

If you think your acne is related to an IUD, focusing on skincare and healthy eating may help in this case. Here is the best skincare plan for the treatment of Mirena causing acne:

  • Skin Exfoliation: Some advice includes face exfoliation using salicylic acid twice a week.
  • Retinol Usage: Add retinol to your skincare, promoting the regrowth of skin cells.
  • Face Cleansing: Clean your face thoroughly daily.
  • Healthy Eating: Eat healthily, preferably low glycemic foods like fresh vegetables and beans.
  • Low Glycemic Food Intake: As already mentioned, try to have low glycemic foods. So, avoid eating sugar pastries, potato chips and white bread.
  • Higher Water Intake: Have plenty of water. It will help in removing toxins from the body.
  • Healthy Lifestyle: It is necessary to include moderate exercises in your daily routine to get a healthy lifestyle.

Mirena/Hormonal Acne and Non-Hormonal Acne

A hormonal IUD contains hormones similar to the body’s progesterone released in the uterus. On the other hand, a non-hormonal or copper IUD doesn’t have any hormones.


Mirena or hormonal acne is caused by the elevation in hormones of the body.

Generally, progesterone-like hormones, also termed progestin or Levonorgestrel medication, helps control the birth rate. It is often more severe than non-hormonal acne and can signify an underlying hormonal imbalance.

  • Mirena cystic acne is a severe form of acne often accompanied by acne scars, deep nodules, and constant pain. It usually develops in puberty due to elevation in hormone production.

Other causes of hormonal acne are the production of excess oils by the skin, clogged pores, bacterial attack, and inflammation.

  • On the other hand, non-hormonal acne is caused by the usage of Copper IUD instead of progesterone. 

Copper IUD is the more reliable way of contraception as it lacks hormones, due to which there is less chance of acne in this case. 

Non-hormonal acne has mild effects, and it can be cured with mild medications.

Mirena and Birth Control Pills

Birth control pills are also a safe way of contraception, but it comes with mild symptoms like spotting during menstruation, nausea, or headaches. But these symptoms go away within a few months of taking birth control pills.

Mirena and Birth Control Pills Together for Acne

Mirena and birth control pills are customarily taken alternately.

Taking them together has no such adverse effects. Mirena contains progesterone, and pills also contain progesterone and oestrogen; using them together actually boosts the action of hormones.

Keep in mind if you are turning from pills to IUD, you have to use both of them together for seven days, even with the insertion of IUD.

Mirena for Acne Treatment!

The Mirena IUD can also be used to treat women who suffer from severe acne or hormonal acne!

Let’s see how it’s done along with some other important steps:

  • The first step in treating acne is to identify the underlying hormonal imbalance. If there is a hormonal imbalance in the body, it needs to be corrected.
  • It is possible to control acne with topical treatments or oral medications, but this should be done in consultation with a medical professional. 
  • The most crucial form of acne treatment is lifestyle changes such as eating healthy food, maintaining a healthy weight, and managing stress levels.
  • Specific antibiotic treatments can help kill bacteria and reduce inflammation on your skin. With specific treatments, you will see an improvement in your skin within 2 to 4 weeks, if not sooner.
  • Then the Mirena IUD can be used to treat women who suffer from hormonal acne. It prevents ovulation, which reduces androgen hormones, reducing sebum production that causes acne breakouts. 

This is how Mirena can also treat acne.


Question: Does Mirena cause acne?

Answer: Using hormonal IUD can cause acne due to the hormone it contains, which will result in acne. But if you are using Copper IUD, you are less susceptible to acne as it is hormone-free.

Question: How long after IUD insertion will you get acne?

Answer: It is based on hormonal release by IUD, which is converted to testosterone that further activates skin’s sebum and dead skin cells leading to the formation of cystic acne. The average time noticed in previous cases is 3 to 4 months.

Question: How quickly will my acne clear after Mirena removal?

Answer: As Mirena is implanted into the uterine for five years, removing it will not instantly help in curing acne. Even after the removal of Mirena, the reproductive system takes approximately three months to get cured of the acne caused by it.


Mirena IUD has 99-99.6% effectiveness in contraception. But, Mirena cystic acne is a major drawback. 

Regardless, with some simple skincare routine and a healthy lifestyle, cystic acne can be easily avoided. 

So, don’t stress much and follow the tips and tricks provided in this article to get rid of your Mirena cystic acne!

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