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Here you are watching Living Single, and wondering why they didn’t cast you as the fifth roommate. Motivated, you decide that today is the day to start using that gym membership that you have been paying for two years because, obviously, one workout will attract a casting agent. You pass by the mirror and, with one look, realize that your acne just won’t let you be great.
While this may seem like a silly problem to some, for a person dealing with acne, the way your skin looks can keep you from the things you love most.
For a woman of color, this problem is only exacerbated. You’re not just dealing with acne, you’re dealing with the dark spots that acne leaves behind and hyperpigmentation. Going anywhere can cast a shadow over the whole day. I know, because I have been there.
For years, I tried many techniques like chemical peels, lightening creams, and the oh-so-coveted cocoa butter. Did any of them work? Honey, not even one. As I went from one product to the next, I was left with so much disappointment all of the time.
Over the years, my acne only seemed to get worse, and each time a new batch appeared, dark marks would permanently follow. I was literally the girl above, and my skin stopped me from living on purpose.
For many of us, this story resonates because we have felt the crippling effects of acne-troubled skin. But, let today be the day where you start reclaiming your skin!
The first thing to understand is that acne affects everyone. No matter the race, people from all backgrounds can and do deal with acne. The difference is the way it’s treated. Not all skincare works for darker skin.
Since women of color are more susceptible to having inflammation that tags along with breakouts, doctors say that acne on dark skin can result in Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation. This means that after a breakout, your skin produces excess melanin which can cause discoloration or scarring that results in dark spots.
No, thank you!
If acne creates a rippling effect, the key is to prevent it before it starts.
Here are some tips that can have your skin living its best life!
The first time that you see a zit or even feel it under the surface (we all know when one is brewing), be proactive. The first step to prevention is staying on top of your skincare routine.
The American Academy of Dermatology recommends “washing your face when waking, before bed, and after sweating.” While we know that washing your face won’t instantly take all of your problems away, it is an essential first step to achieving healthy skin. This will prevent any bacteria, sweat, and dirt buildup from making a permanent home in your pores and causing you to breakout.
While searching through over-the-counter products, it is common to see skincare that has retinoids, benzoyl peroxide, or salicylic acid listed in the ingredients.
According to Dr. Carlos Charles, a dermatologist and founder of Derma di Colore Dermatology in NYC, products like retinoids, benzoyl peroxide, and salicylic acid, have the most potential to cause extreme irritation on darker skin tones. He says, “Overall, I find that [these] often lead to irritation when being used for acne, which can then result in PIH (Post-inflammatory Hyperpigmentation).”
If you see any of these three products listed, do yourself a favor and toss it.
Many times we are desperate and just want to find anything that will work for our acne. This desperation can lead us to expensive and painful methods such as chemical peels, laser treatments, or the all-so-popular microneedling.
These are not proven methods to treat or heal acne and in many cases, they have been known to harm the skin.
Save yourself some time and money and try my next tip instead.
For women of color, there are so many times that we can be discouraged by our skin’s appearance. But the good news is that you are not alone and there is a solution that can work.
Averr Aglow’s Luminous Clear Skin Kit is packed full of essential ingredients to not only get on top of acne but also help to rejuvenate the skin. Included in this kit is the Luminous Complexion Toner which can help fade dark marks and even out the complexion.
Many women have found their skin confidence just by using our products. Averr Aglow works for all skin types and celebrates the skin you’re in. We believe that your melanin is beautiful, and we want you to start embracing it in all its radiance!