Skincare is something that has gained so much popularity recently, and happens to also be near and dear to my heart. There are so many current trends and products circulating in the current beauty industry, and if you’re anything like me, its extremely easy to fall down a skin care rabbit hole trying to find the right products. I went my entire life with clear skin and truth be told, I can’t truly recall a time before the age of twenty-three that I struggled with acne. Once I turned twenty-three however, my skin turned it’s back on me. I was suddenly dealing with flaky skin, dark spots, and cystic acne and I had no idea what to do with my newly found problem skin. All I knew was that my confidence was diminishing with every new pimple.
I did what everyone does when they want to learn about something; enrolled in YouTube University that’s what! I had tried just about every “holy grail” product that I could get my hands on, but all to no avail. It wasn’t until I truly studied my skin, my body and my diet that I started to see the light at the end of the hyperpigmentation tunnel. My skin studying ultimately led me to creating BareNine. However, it took a full lifestyle change to maintain my healthy skin.
I started by learning what type of skin I have first. This step is so important to the product selection process. From there, I got my blood work done to see if I had any underlying health issues. After finding out I was vitamin D deficient, (which plays a huge part in your mood and skin) I took the necessary steps to get my health and diet in order. From there, I was able to find out what products and ingredients worked best for my skin.
If you see yourself in any part of my journey, here are some tips to get your skin to work for you not against you.
1. Drink water often. Cliche I know, but water is so important to your skin and overall health. Commit to drinking water way more than you drink anything else. You can also get your daily water intake from fruits and/or vegetables. If you aren’t a fan of the taste of water, add fruits, a flavored low-calorie sweetener, apple cider vinegar, or even pre-workout to your water in order to make it bearable.
2. Stress less. We’ve been actively in the middle of several pandemics at once. So yes, anxiety, depression and stress are at all time highs. However, it’s important to control what can be controlled, and let everything else fall to the wayside. Stress and trauma stays in our bodies far longer than we perceive it, so it’s important to not allow your body and mind to become a home for it.
3. Figure out your skin type. There’s oily, sensitive, dry, mature and combination skin types. It’s important to know what your skin type is so that you can know which products to use. There is no sense in using a product that doesn’t regulate oil if you have oily skin, or applying an exfoliating toner to chronically dry skin. It will take a lot of trial and error, but once you find your holy grail, you’ll be happy you took the time to study your skin. We can also help with that :)
4. Wear sunscreen. You heard right, contrary to popular belief, black skin needs sunscreen too. The sun does not discriminate, so if it wants to wreak havoc on your skin, it will. We can tan and burn just as easily as everyone else, so sunscreen protects you from overdosing on the sun. Not only does sunscreen protect the skin from skin damage, it also protects dark spots from getting darker. We recommend any COSRX Sunscreens, Mele’s : DEW THE MOST Broad Spectrum Sunscreen, and the Black Girl Sunscreen. These brands are under $25 at most places and do not leave a white cast on the skin. Please add sunscreen to your routine. SPF is your BFF!
5. Change your sheets once a week. If it is not already a habit, make it one! It makes a huge difference between how you go to sleep and how you wake up daily. If enough dirt and bacteria accumulates on your sheets, your skin has no choice but to make contact with it as you sleep. This can result in a pimple or two the next day. It isn’t an exact science; clean sheets = clean skin.
6. Get your beauty rest. Speaking of sheets, go lay in them! During deep sleep, your body enters repair mode and regenerates skin, muscles, blood and brain cells. Inadequate sleep prevents your body from producing new collagen. Try to get 7 hours a nice for optimal skin health.
7. Use paper towels or microfiber cloths. A simple but an effective way to see a difference is your skin, is to use a paper towel or microfiber cloth during your skincare routine. Using regular towels, even if they are freshly washed, can transfer dirt & bacteria back onto the skin.
8. Use clean/ toxin free skin care. This honestly should have been number one, but let’s address it. We promote clean skincare, not but because it’s a trend, but because it works! The ingredients in your skincare make all the difference in your skin’s health.
9. Eat Well. Also another given. The cliches “you are what you eat.” and “as within, so without” are very true sayings. What you feed your body will show up on your skin eventually. Make sure you’re feeding it well.
With all the information circulating with skincare it’s easy to get discouraged, especially when your skin has started to become a source of insecurity. You will thank yourself for making the necessary lifestyle/product changes to make nice with your skin. What you put into your skin is what you will get out. It’s that simple.