I know a lot of women who fear the removal of hormone therapy or fear not being offered hormone therapy (because of the associated cancer risks) - because it has been advertised as the "ultimate magic treatment" for many of the complaints of menopause. But estrogen can also be used topically to stimulate collagen production and improve the appearance of skin. I remember seeing a dermatologist on air who swore that putting a little hormone cream around her delicate eye area was the best anti-aging treatment she had ever discovered - she didn't even use it daily - just 2-3 times/week. So this information is not news to me - though it may be to you.
A new study looked at whether treating "sun damaged skin" with estrogen - could also have a repair and collagen-stimulating impact. In the study, sun-damaged skin was treated with either .01%, .1%, 1% and 2.5% estradiol cream or a placebo was used. No matter what dosage was used, no improvement was seen in the photo-aged (sun-damaged) skin.
So here's another reason to protect yourself against sun damage - because though we do have solutions to improve the skin, once it's damaged - you will never reclaim the incredible texture and elasticity that unexposed skin retains. That, plus of course the skin cancer risk!!