Drugstores and supermarket aisles are brimming with skincare products of all kinds, but when it comes to choosing ones that work for you, you might need to do a bit of research. Your skin type—dry, oily, or combination—and even your skin tone can influence whether certain products will work more or less well for you. However, there are some products and treatments that work for all skin types—here are a few for you to try out.
Wearing sunscreen is normally considered a ‘must’ for those with light skin, especially people whose skin tends to burn easily in the sun. However, some skincare experts have started advocating that all people should apply sunscreen at least once a day when in a sunny climate, regardless of their skin color. Sunscreen blocks out harmful UV rays from the sun, which can cause skin cancer in the long run, and even though skin cancers are less common among dark-skinned than light-skinned people, that doesn’t make darker-skinned folks immune to them.
When choosing your sunscreen, go for an SPF factor of 30 or higher and make sure that you are picking a ‘broad spectrum’ sunscreen, which means that you will be protected against both UVA and UVB rays.
2. Face cleanser
A good water-based face cleanser will remove dirt and bacteria from any skin type and leave you feeling and looking radiant. However, washing or cleansing your face too often can actually cause your skin to produce too much oil to compensate for the natural oils that will have been stripped away by the face wash or serum. A good rule of thumb is to wash your face in the morning, in the evening, and after a workout or any other activity that causes you to sweat.
3. Chemical peels
A chemical peel is a type of cosmetic treatment whereby a chemical solution is applied to the face to remove the top layers of skin cells. The skin that grows back will be smoother, and wrinkles, scars and discoloration will be less visible. There are different levels of chemical peel, and your doctor will be able to advise you on the best one for you—for example, a deeper peel might be needed to remove scars, whereas a light peel will be sufficient if you simply want to make your skin look younger.
Although a chemical peel will work for any skin type, there are differences in the level of risk associated with having a chemical peel depending on your skin color. People with darker skin are more likely to experience discoloration, which can be a permanent side effect of deep, phenol-based peels, whereas it is only temporary with lighter peels. If you have dark skin, therefore, you should limit yourself to light chemical peels.
4. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, and it has been observed to reduce dark circles under the eyes, unevenness in skin pigmentation, and redness. Look for cleansers and moisturizers with added vitamin C to avoid having to buy a specific vitamin C serum, saving you money and shelf space!