I’ve talked about skincare a lot on this blog and reviewed beauty products especially Korean skincare products. However, most readers don’t know about my journey to finally getting acne under control and how I cleared my dark spots.
Over the years, I struggled with acne and post-acne hyperpigmentation. Any pimple that appeared on my face left a dark spot that took forever to clear. The worst was the huge hormonal ones that appeared at tough spots monthly.
I tried literally everything I saw for spot removal especially after graduating from secondary school irrespective of the ingredients. Those days, one thought as big girls (fresh secondary graduates) we needed to glow up for University. The pimples didn’t let me be great and I resorted to covering the dark spots with makeup products anytime I was leaving the house.
You know how people are so quick to suggest skincare products despite your skin type. I got a lot of suggestions and some aunties blamed the spots on my use of makeup, forgetting the spots were the reason I started using makeup in the first place.
While waiting for University admission, I started modeling in Lagos, Nigeria where I met a woman that did facials in her house. Her facials helped in keeping fresh pimples away for sometime but the dark spots from previous spots remained.
I gave up on facials after I left Lagos and continued experimenting with products. I was always exfoliating my face with St. Ives apricot scrub which ended up doing nothing to my spots. I still see a lot of positive reviews of St Ives exfoliators so, I was either buying the fake ones then or not following a proper skincare routine for my skin type.
When I traveled abroad for studies, I went makeup-free between my 1st and 2nd year in the university and reintroduced monthly facials. The cosmetologist I was seeing used Dead Sea products, etc and yet no visible change to the dark spots. Few old spots that were lighter faded away but the rest remained.
I was always so conscious of my face and the rest of my body because my fair complexion made the dark spots very obvious. I tried switching my then dove body lotions and creams to pears and other baby lotions just to rule out effects from harsh ingredients. Nothing worked.
I became obsessed with skincare and vowed to find a remedy for my skin. I mean, how hard could it be to find at most 1 product that works?. Plus I’d always wanted to specialize in a part of medicine I enjoyed. My dream of specializing in dermatology was on the line if I couldn’t find a remedy for my own skin.
I began trying out products by continents and countries. Oh yes, I did! I tried different African black soaps (Dudu osun, zee, etc) and they were too drying for my skin. I tried some American products I bought online, tried some Avon and Garnier products (reviewed the exfo brusher).
Subsequently, I learnt French products were ahead of American products and other European products. I tried a couple of made in France products. Still no change, the tough bastards were still playing on my face.
I was drinking enough water and taking fruits incase you were wondering if I paid attention to my diet. I’ve always hated sugary products since secondary school days and very oily food, so those weren’t part of the issues either. This went on till late 2014. I realized I’ve been going about skincare and everything the wrong way!
How I Got Acne Under Control
Being a blogger, I come across different blogs and articles daily. One faithful day, I saw an article about how Korean skincare was about 12 years ahead of skincare innovation globally. I began searching on google for Korean skincare. What’s the worst that can happen that hadn’t already happened to me.
That was how I discovered Korean skincare routines and Asian skincare/beauty generally. My skin has never been the same since then. I finally understood the phrases “you’re what you eat.” and “If it can’t go into your body, it shouldn’t be on your body.”
Honestly, some of the skincare ingredients I discovered were things I had already tried in the past but I was either too impatient to see results or I didn’t prepare my skin for the products to be effective. Eg. Using lemon to fade scars.
If you’ve ever looked at Korean skincare products, you might be turned off by some of their ingredients, donkey bla bla bla, pig collagen, milky piggy bla bla, etc, or words like whitening, acid peeling, etc. Trust me, they are nothing like they sound and they don’t mean the same as those terms in Nigeria and other countries.
Since discovering these skin changing routines and products, I’ve been more confident about specializing in cosmetic dermatology when the time comes than ever! Like, girl! ‘been there, done that! your skin will be safe with me!
First things first. I had to learn the basics of skincare in addition to healthy food and fruits. I also learnt general practices to aid skincare success. I wouldn’t call me an expert yet but I’ve got years of personal experiences that are enough to advise other people so that they don’t waste money and time or worse, damage their skin in their skincare journey.
Forget what we read about drinking lots of water, if that’s the only thing you’re doing, you might probably never see results. You need to modify other parts of your lifestyle before you can see results while using products, like changing pillowcases often, having a night time skincare routine, etc.
Finally, Here’s How I Cleared My Dark spots Thanks To Following Korean Skincare Routines.
•Double cleansing: this means cleansing oil impurities with oil based cleansers such as this cleansing oil and water-soluble impurities with water-based cleansers such as this low ph face wash. I double cleanse mostly when I have makeup on but it’s better to always double cleanse.
•Exfoliating: at least 2 times a week. I first started with gritty exfoliators like my favorite sugar mask but now I interchange with clay masks, chemical exfoliators (Aha, BHA) and exfoliating gloves and cloths.
•Toner: Contrary to what people use the term toning for in Nigeria, toning in skincare is basically returning your skin’s pH to normal or lowering it as the case may be for the other products (actives) in your routine to be effective.
•Serum, Essence and/or Ampoule Application: If you have a particular skin concern to tackle, your best bet is to use one or all of them to tackle it as most of these products are made specifically for individual skin conditions. If you can’t afford to have all, go for one with a wide range of uses. I use a vitamin C face serum. I talked about it and all the benefits of using the right vitamin C serum in this OST vitamin C20 review.
•Moisturizing: Forget what people say about not using anything on their skin because the weather is too hot, they sweat a lot and creams or lotions make them sweat more, etc. If your cream makes you sweat then it isn’t suitable for your skin. Skin getting so oily or sweaty means your body is overcompensating for your skin’s dryness and insufficient moisture. Hence the reason to balance out your skin’s moisture with lotions.
There are variety of moisturizers to choose from.
•Sun care: I can’t overemphasize on the use of spf in skincare. If you’re using products for hyperpigmentation and not using spf up to 40 minutes before going under the sun, you’re harming your skin. Even if you have sensitive skin, there are soothing sun creams to use like this Aloe soothing SPF50 sun cream.
Miscellaneous Skincare Products For Acne Control
These products are useful, however, if you’re just starting out, you could use them when you feel like pampering your skin.
•Sheet mask: I use sheet masks occasionally, once or twice in a month or when I remember. If you can afford to, you should use sheet masks weekly. Just like other products, there are different sheet masks with ingredients for different purposes.
Some people don’t see their desired results after using sheet masks so, they just leave it out of their skincare routine and count it as waste of money. This won’t be so if used right.
When used right, sheet masks can do wonders to your skin overnight. Here are 4 ways to get the most out of your sheet masks. Beside the benefits on skin, they’re quite relaxing to use after a long day. Very rejuvenating!
From my experience, you should choose a sheet mask with ingredients that target the particular skin concern you want to take care of. If your skin is dull or you had a stressful week or day and your skin needs some brightening, it would make more sense to use a rice or lemon sheet mask instead of a kiwi sheet mask.
Pimple patch: Acne/Pimple patches come in handy when you have a pimple you need to flatten overnight without pressing out the content with your nails. These patches extract them without any pressure on your skin. I reviewed the cosrx pimple patches on the blog, they’re the ones I use.
Like I mentioned earlier, Koreans make individual products targeting specific skin conditions. Example, brightening, anti aging, acne, blackheads, etc.
Blackhead Nose Patch: this patch is made to extract blackheads from your nose in one swift move. There are bigger liquid products that target blackheads also like the Cosrx BHA blackhead liquid I reviewed.
The Best Part Of Acne Control And How I Cleared My Dark Spots
I didn’t have to use only Korean skincare products, just the routines. You actually don’t need only Korean beauty products for Korean skincare routines. I chose to use Korean products almost exclusively because of my experiences over the years with products made in different countries and experimenting without success.
Korean products are so mild that you might actually doubt they’re doing anything to your skin till you compare the state and look of your skin before, during and after using a product. I also love that they use natural products and because they invest a lot in their skincare, they make products that are safe for all skin types.
Above all, they’re patient with their skincare and routines. I order these products straight from Korea and I’ve decided to make it easier for you to get these products in Nigeria through Shop Modavracha.
I saw a 75ml snail cream from a popular Korean brand Mizon that retails between $14 – $20 depending on where you buy from being sold on Konga for 25,000 naira. This was one of the reasons I decided to start my online store for Korean skincare products in Nigeria. Skincare doesn’t have to cost an arm and leg.
For someone who has been using Korean products for more than 3 years almost exclusively now, I know better than to buy certain brands or products for such ridiculous amount in Nigeria when I know their price range even with shipping. Shop Modavracha would sell products at normal retail rates.
If you’re interested in knowing the exact products I’ve used on my skin so far, I’ve documented them under Korean Skincare. I can’t begin to list and explain how to use each of them here or this post would be longer than it is already.
If you already have products that work for you and can be gotten locally, just use the routine mentioned above and your skin would be glowing in no time.
When people see me now and say, you’re looking fresh or your skin looks great. I just smile and think, “if only you know how much money and effort that has gone into this skin and how I cleared my dark spots. I mean I had this drug reaction after clearing my skin but thank God for discovering Korean Skincare products.
If you have suffered like me to achieve good looking skin but yet nothing worked, you’re in luck. This post should definitely teach you a thing or 2 about skincare routines.You need Korean skincare products and routines in your life! Here's why.. Click To Tweet
This year, I didnt stick to my Korean skincare products exclusively because I decided to try Nigerian organic skincare brands. Plus, housejob took too much of my time so, my skincare routine lacked. There are great products out there but I’m now back to my Korean ways, lol.
Did you struggle with acne and post acne hyper pigmentation? What’s your story?
Thanks for stopping by as usual