The Skincare Favorites of a Dark-Skinned Girl with Aged Acne Scars

I have been dealing with Acne Scars for as long as I can remember. I was in elementary school with baby smooth skin, covered in a sheen from my mother slathering Coco Butter all over my face and body. Before I even know it, middle school came around and the hormones of my raging tween body had caused my skin to become very textured and oily, with many pimples spreading on my forehead and jaw area. I was mortified. I began to pop my pimples; having the feeling of relief every single time. I then developed acne scarring, and made sure to cover my scars with makeup for any of the days in which I would be seen in public. Approval of everyone else is what mattered most to me back then; but it is now a goal of mine to rid my face of acne scarring and resist the urge to pop any new pimples that come my way. These staple products of mine have brought me closer to my goal; I hope it does the same for you as well.

reSHAPE Dark Spot Corrector

  • Found at T.J.Maxx for $6.00

I have just recently added this product as one of my staples. This night cream contains Lactic Acid which is a form of AHA (Alpha Hydroxy Acid). This form of AHA actually helps to reduce breakouts and help to rid your face of any signs of aging. It’s exfoliating features help to remove dead skin cells and reveal healthy new skin cells that were underneath the dead skin. This helps to reduce the appearance of acne scarring, as well as Vitamin C which brightens the skin and boost collagen production which helps with the skin’s elasticity (flexibility) as well as remove dead skin cells. At night, after I wash my makeup off with a double cleanse and tone my face, I apply this on to my skin with the sponge applicator that is built into the bottle and make sure to pat it into my skin. Do not rub it too much; it will rub off of your skin.

Whipped African Shea Butter

  • Found by vendor in Harlem for $5.00

I have been using Shea Butter for a long time. The consistency of the butter is so rich and leaves my skin so smooth and moisturized. Shea Butter works as a sunscreen because of the vitamins E and D, helps with acne breakouts, helps with skin discoloration, stretch marks, wrinkles and my personal struggle, dark spots. I love Shea Butter in the winter since my skin tends to dry up in the colder months of the year. I like to use this in the daytime to act as my sunscreen; when you begin to use AHA on your skin, it becomes sensitive to light. You want to make sure to protect your skin at all times.

Avocado Oil

  • Found at Local Beauty Supply Store for $2.50

This is another recent favorite of mine. Avocado stimulates cell renewal which is important when wanting to remove any skin discoloration. I use this oil in the morning after I cleanse and tone my skin (then applying Shea Butter over it) and at night after I apply my night cream.

Witch Hazel

  • Found at Duane Reade for $7.00

Boy do I swear by this product. I have been using Witch Hazel for a year straight now and it has controlled the oil that accumulates on my nose, chin, and forehead, shrunken my large pores, de-puffs my under eye area, and completely refreshes my skin. I can almost hear my skin draw a sigh of relief when I take this on to a cotton round and smooth it over my face. It tones my skin without  over-drying it, leaving it so soft and ready for the other products I apply to my face.

Evening Primrose Oil (1000mg)

  • Gifted to me by my Mother on her Vacation ($?)

At first, my mother had brought this for me because of my extreme menstrual symptoms (cramps, nausea, vomiting, etc.) I then started to realize that I had a lot fewer breakouts from my period, and my skin has had a glow and resilience to it. I take one every other day.\

Aloe + Vitamin E Face Mask

  • Found at T.J.Maxx for $6.00

I love to use this mask whenever my skin gets very textured and dry. Surprisingly, even in the summer my skin still seems to feel dry after a long day. I apply the mask on with my hands and leave it on for about 10 minutes. After, I wash it off with lukewarm water and pat dry to reveal smooth, baby soft skin. I use this mask about once a week.

Freeman Feeling Beautiful Purifying Avocado + Oatmeal Clay Mask

  • Found at Dollar General for $2.50

This mask is my go-to when wearing makeup for a prolonged period of time. My skin soaks in the foundation and it clogs my pores. When that happens, I apply this mask after double cleansing and leave it on for about 7 minutes. When I wash it off with warm water and pat dry, my skin feels so refreshed and so clean with out it being over dried. It is then ready for the rest of my skincare routine.

African Black Soap

  • Found by vendor in Harlem for $5.00

Although I do have combination skin, I find that this soap does a great job of removing oil, dirt, and excess make-up from my skin. I tend to only keep this cleanser on my face for less than a minute; it will leave my face painfully dry if I leave it on for too long. I wash my face twice with this soap before I move on to the rest of the routine. After washing it off, my face gives off a natural glow and reduces the appearance of blemishes.

Coconut Oil

  • Found in BJ’s Wholesale for $10.00

I know that this one is a bit pricey, but I wanted to buy a big jug of coconut oil so that I would have for months to come. From time to time, I get cystic acne on my chin. When that happens, I slather coconut oil all over my face and rub it in before I shower and wash off the excess. The coconut oil goes straight to work as soon as I apply it to my face, and the cystic acne shrinks to about two times smaller than it originally was. I love it! I also use it to remove all of my makeup at night before I rest. It isn’t harsh and doesn’t pull at the skin like wipes and cotton rounds with makeup remover does. When I was the coconut oil off, my skin feels rejuvenated and supple to the touch.

Soap And Glory Puffy Eye Attack Turbo-Boost Hydragel

  • Found at Duane Reade for $10.00

After stressing over life and not getting as much sleep I would like, I finally began to have trouble with dark circles and puffy eyes. This eye cream definitely does a great job with de-puffing the under eye area in the morning and at night. I haven’t really seen a change in the dark circles, but to be fair I had just started to use this product less than a month ago. I’ll give you an update on how it turned out in a couple more months if you’d like. A little does go a long way with this product. After toning my skin, I take a very small amount of the eye gel and use my ring finger to pat it under the eyes.

I hope I was able to help someone else who struggles with similar problems. Remember that to each is own; what may work for me may not work for you or even work at a faster rate! It is up to you whether or not you would like to try. Think positive and have a great day and/or night and think positive always!

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Author: Leylany Martinez

A beautiful mind powered by the strength of community and "The Office", with my cat in my lap. Pleased to meet you.

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