Key skincare ingredients you should look out for

There are numerous skin care products today, both internationally and locally, this blog post will help you understand some of the ingredients in your skin care products that is applicable to your skin concern and how it will benefit you.

Alpha-hydoxy Acid (AHAs)

skin care products containing alpha-hydroxy acids have become increasingly popular in recent years. Creams and lotions with alpha-hydroxy acids may help with fine lines, hyperpigmentation and age spots, and may help shrink enlarged pores. Side effects of alpha-hydroxy acids include mild irritation and sun sensitivity. To avoid burning, sunscreen should be applied in the morning. To help avoid skin irritation, start with a product with a maximum concentration of 10% to 15% AHA. To allow your skin to get used to alpha-hydroxy acids, you should only initially apply the skin care product every other day, gradually working up to daily application.

Salicylic acid

Salicylic acid removes dead skin and can improve the texture and colour of damaged skin It penetrates oil-laden hair follicle openings and, as a result, also helps with acne. Salicylic acid dries out excess oils (sebum) in your pores which in turn reduces breakouts. It is milder and there are many skin care products available that contain salicylic acid.

Hydroquinone

Skin care products containing hydroquinone are often called bleaching creams or lightening agents. These skin care products are used to lighten hyperpigmentation, such as age spots and dark spots related to pregnancy or hormones (melasma or chloasma)..  Not all products that contain hydroquinone is harmful to the skin. It’s mostly for correcting severe discoloration .

Kojic Acid

Kojic acid is also is a remedy for the treatment of pigment problems and age spots. kojic acid works similarly to hydroquinone. It is derived from a fungus, and studies have shown that it is effective as a lightening agent, slowing production of melanin (brown pigment) which in turn begins to lighten.

Glycolic

Glycolic acid is a key ingredient for exfoliating your skin. It works by loosening the glue-like substance that holds dull and dead skin cells on the topmost layer of your skin, revealing newer, healthier skin. And because glycolic acid has the smallest molecular size of all the AHAs, it’s the most bioavailable and active, allowing it to penetrate the skin the most easily.

But that’s not all. Aside from providing instant rejuvenation, glycolic acid has also been shown to stimulate the production of collagen and elastin, which means that with continuous use, glycolic acid can actually accelerate skin healing and reduce signs of environmental damage.

Retinol

Retinol is derived from vitamin A and is found in many “anti-aging” skin care products. Tretinoin, which is the active ingredient Retin-A is a stronger version of retinol. If your skin is too sensitive to use Retin-A, over-the-counter retinol is an excellent alternative. The skin responds to skin care products with retinol because vitamin A has a molecular structure that’s tiny enough to get into the lower layers of skin, where it finds collagen and elastin. Retinol is proven to improve mottled pigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles, skin texture, skin tone and colour, and your skin’s hydration levels. Retinyl palmitate is another ingredient related to retinol, but is less potent.

Ascorbic Acid

This is the only form of vitamin C that you should look for in your skin care products. There are many skin care products on the market today that boast vitamin C derivatives as an ingredient but L-ascorbic acid is the only useful form of vitamin C in skin care products. With age and sun exposure, collagen synthesis in the skin decreases, leading to wrinkles. Vitamin C is the only antioxidant proven to stimulate the synthesis of collagen, minimizing fine lines, scars, and wrinkles.

Hyaluronic Acid

Skin care products containing this substance are often used with vitamin C products to assist in effective penetration. Hyaluronic acid is often advertised for its ability to “reverse” or stop aging. In n This is because the substance occurs naturally (and quite abundantly) in humans and animals, and is found in young skin, other tissues, and joint fluid. Hyaluronic acid is a component of the body’s connective tissues, and is known to cushion and lubricate. As you age, however, the forces of nature destroy hyaluronic acid. Diet and smoking can also affect your body’s level of hyaluronic acid over time. Skin care products with hyaluronic acid are most frequently used to treat wrinkled skin.

Benzoyl Peroxide

Benzoyl peroxide is the most effective acne-fighting ingredient available without a prescription. It works best on traditional red, pus-filled pimples (pustules).

In addition to removing excess oil and dead skin cells, benzoyl peroxide helps kill acne-causing bacteria beneath the skin.

Now that you are enlightened about major ingredients in your skin care products, you can stop by at the youtopia beauty store to get everything you need for a glowing and radiant skin.

THE 7 SKIN TYPES AND HOW TO IDENTIFY YOURS

THE 7 SKIN TYPES AND HOW TO IDENTIFY YOURS.

I’m sure you are wondering why the products you are using isn’t working for you or you are not seeing any visible results and that’s probably because you are using the wrong product for your skin type. Yep!  So that tells you the importance of knowing your skin type.  This blog post is a bit lengthy and that’s because I have outlined and explained major skin types and how to quickly identify yours.

So the question is What’s your skin type?     

Dry Skin

When your skin feels a bit flaky and rough Then you have a dry skin. Dry skin lacks moisture and lipids – i.e. fats. It is therefore less elastic. it is tight and, in many cases, tends to itch. Dry skin is as a result of lack of oil production. It reacts to environmental influences in particular by becoming irritated. With special care creams, you can restore its moisture stores and strengthen your skin’s protective barriers. Its best you get products that are extra moisturizing.

How to identify dry skin;

  • It’s quite pale in colour
  • Can look Flaky in places
  • Feels uneven in texture
  • Fine lines around eyes and mouth

Oily Skin

Oily  skin is as a result of  sebaceous glands overproducing  oil (sebum) due to genetic makeup. Other causes can include hormones, humid climates, or over drying your skin which forces it to produce more oil. When your skin is shiny, or you notice a lot of excess oil on your face, neck, shoulders and back then you should know you have oily skin.

How to identify oily skin

  • Appears shiny
  • Large or open pores
  • Prone to Acne
  • Blackheads or whiteheads

Combination skin

As the name implies “combination” of both oily and dry skin. So what happens is that your T-ZONE (Forehead and Nose) is oily while your cheeks are dry. Combination skin can be a bit tricky because you have to deal with both skin types.

Normal Skin

Normal’ refers to a well-balanced skin. The scientific term for well-balanced skin is eudermic. The T-zone (forehead, chin and nose) may be a bit oily, but overall sebum and moisture is balanced and the skin is neither too oily nor too dry.

How to identify a Normal Skin:

  • It is very clean and clear, no spots and not greasy
  • It has fine pores
  • Good blood circulation
  • No discoloration
  • No blemishes
  • A velvety, soft and smooth texture
  • Not prone to skin sensitivity

Sensitive skin

If you have sensitive skin, you’ll be all too aware of the wide variety of emotional and environmental factors that can affect it – from a change of weather, to household pets, stress and even dust. Sensitive skin is caused by nerve endings in the top layer of skin becoming irritated. This occurs because your skin’s natural barrier function is weakened and has broken down due to a trigger.

How to identify a sensitive skin
•           Is sometimes sore or sensitive to touch
•           Flushes easily after a spicy meal or drinking alcohol
•           Has patches of redness that may or may not fade
•           Has areas of uneven texture, with dryness and flakiness
•           Reacts to skincare.
•           Becomes itchy or develops a rash after contact with irritants
•           Turns red and dries out after a hot shower or rigorous workout
•           Becomes irritable after continued washing with hard water.

Mature skin

As ageing skin cannot store moisture as effectively any more, Sebaceous glands produce less oil as you age. Women gradually produce less oil beginning after menopause. This can make it harder to keep the skin moist, resulting in dryness and itchiness.

How to identify a mature skin

  • Wrinkles
  • Dull complexion
  • Elasticity reduces
  • Less collagen production
  • Lines become deeper around the face
  • Skin gets looser on the neck.

Dehydrated skin

Dehydrated skin, is a skin condition that is caused by external elements (weather and seasonal changes), unhealthy diet (lack of fresh produce) and lifestyle choices (alcohol or caffeine consumption). All of these factors deplete your skin’s water content, resulting in a less supple appearance. A key takeaway is that dehydration is characterized by a lack of water – not oil; even oily skin types can become dehydrated. Luckily, dehydrated skin is temporary and can be relieved with a combination of topical treatments and lifestyle changes. Drinking lots of water is essential in combating dehydrated skin.

How to identify a Dehydrated skin

  • Dark under eye circle
  • Itchy patches
  • Sensitive skin areas.

Hopefully this can help you identify your skin type and  help you pick the right products.

 

 

My Daily Skin Care Routine!

My Daily Skin Care Routine!

It is safe to say that you have a pretty busy schedule and more often than none a lot of people get so busy that they forget to take care of their skin. You are probably a 9-5 worker, or a busy business person, or you are trying to hit the gym, getting your kids ready for school or running late for an important office meeting.  Trust me to understand all of these.

But having a daily skin care routine is important regardless of your busy schedule. I will be sharing mine with you and I hope it helps you

When it comes to a nice, glowing complexion, there are quite a few steps you can (and probably should) include in your skin care regimen although not all of them need to be done on a daily basis or at the same time every day.

Rome wasn’t built in a day, and having a glowing skin is everyone’s desire but you need to know that it cannot happen overnight. It’s not magic! You will have to understand your skin type, you need to be consistent and you also need to use the right products to achieve your desired results.

Hopefully My Daily skin care routine will serve as a guide for you.

Step 1

WASH YOUR FACE

Clean skin is very important! So, reach for a facial cleanser when you wake up and before you go to sleep to help wash away any excess dirt and oil that may have built up on the surface of your skin throughout the day (or while you slept). Personally I use the YOUSKIN vitamin C cleanser and it is amazing for my skin. Its not drying doent contain sulphates and has a great PH.

There other amazing brands that you can use.

  • Cosrx Salicylic wash ( Very good for Acne prone skin)
  • Cosrx lowPh Good morning Gel cleanser

Step 2

APPLY A FACE TONER

Face toners are great for exfoliating the skin, especially the face, although I skip this step and I do it sparingly, it doesn’t mean you should….lol! They gradually help melt dead skin and rejuvenate your skin and also reduce the formation of Acne. I will recommend you use face toners that have Glycolic Acids in them, or AHA, BHA toners, these actives are effective exfoliators and leave skin cleaner and more radiant than before

We love these products ; Pixi toner. AHA, BHA Miracle toner,

Step 3

USE A FACE SERUM

This step is probably what most people ignore because you probably do not know the importance of using a serum.  Serums are usually applied after cleansing your skin, your face will easily absorb the content of a serum because it is made up of smaller molecules that penetrates deeply into the skin.  Vitamin C serums are very good because they act as antioxidants to protect the skin and it also reduces skin damages especially the ones caused by the sun.

You can try out this brands of face serum, YOUSKIN vitamin c serum, Timeless Vitamin C serum, Radha Beauty Vitamin C serum.

Step 4

MOISTURIZE YOUR FACE!!

If you are not consistent with any other routine, you can’t afford to skip this one. Moisturizing reduces the chances of skin problems, and using the right kind of moisturizer can help maintain its balance.

When skin is too dry or too oily, many common skin problems like acne, eczema start to pop up. If your skin tends to be dry, look for a cream base – they tend to have a higher oil content, and if your skin is too oily you should always opt for a lotion.

You can get the Miracle Retinol Moisturizer and the youskin face lightener as  perfect for all skin types

Step 5 :

YOU NEED TO WEAR A SUNSCREEN

Sunscreen is important for all skin types even if you think you don’t   burn easily. Sunburn is an immediate reaction, but sun damage stays for a long time. In Nigeria, our ozone layer is constantly depleting so it doesn’t protect us from the harmful rays of the sun, using a sunscreen will. It is advisable that you don’t use any sunscreen less than SPF50 anything less than that may not give you full protection from the sun.

Some very good brands that we have trusted over the years are the Zein Obagi oclipse and the Body shop Sunscreen .

Of course, sun protection doesn’t end at applying sunscreens there are other protective measures you should take. Those include Limiting the amount of time you spend in the sun and wearing clothes that protects your skin.

Why you should exfoliate your skin all year long!!!!

Everyone wants a glowing skin, but to get that glowing skin you will need   to put in work. Exfoliation involves the removal of the oldest dead skin cells on the skin’s outermost surface

Why is exfoliation so important? Aside from clearing away dry and dead skin, a regular exfoliation habit increases the skin’s radiance, clarity, and youthfulness, by removing dry skin cells, you reveal healthy and vibrant skin.

There are two types of exfoliation

The Chemical Exfoliation: Chemical exfoliants are very easy to use because the chemical or acid does all the work. All you have to do is apply it on your skin, and it dissolves the dry or dead skin cell. Some of these chemical exfoliants include Glycolic Acid, AHA’s and BHA’s

Doing chemical exfoliation once in a while isn’t a bad idea especially if you do not have a troubled skin.

Physical exfoliation is basically exfoliating your skin manually by using facial or body scrubs, or sponges to remove dead skin cells. You should try using the Arami Glow scrub, pixi glow toner. These products are amazing for the skin.

Of course you may want to know Some Benefits of Exfoliating

  1. It Unclogs Pores: when you’re exfoliating your skin, you’re effectively unclogging your pores, clogged pores are a result of dead skin cells getting trapped into your skin, instead of being shed into the environment. So what exfoliation does is to remove those dead skin cells in your pores.
  2. It prevents Acne: The common cause of acne is usually congested skin. Exfoliation therefore helps to decongest your skin and it reduces acne.
  3. It helps skin care products sink in: Exfoliation helps other skin care products penetrate into the skin and you see results faster.
  4. Hyperpigmentation: which can be caused by sun damage, inflammation or other skin injuries and they appear darker than the original skin tone around the face or body, exfoliation is beneficial for breaking up the pigmented cells to allow them fade. You may want to also add a lightening agent; I will recommend the You skin face lightener to totally clear it. 

How often should I exfoliate, you just might be thinking aloud…

Exfoliation in as much as it helps your skin look radiant and smooth, “over doing “ it may cause Redness of the skin, you will notice that your skin turns red, especially when you are using a scrub. It is advisable to scrub at least 3-4 times a week and then give your skin a break sometimes.

See Below some of my go-to exfoliating  products.

The Ordinary Peeling Solution
The Ordinary Peeling Solution
Pixi Glow Tonic
Pixi Glow Tonic
Arami Glow Scrub
Miracle Toner

HOW TO STOP GETTING HORMONAL ACNE

What causes monthly hormonal acne around the time of your period?

Just before the start of a woman’s cycle, there is more progesterone in the skin which causes water retention. Because of this, the skin can appear puffier. When this occurs, it puts pressure on the pores and creates a narrower pore lining. Additionally, oil can get thicker because of the imbalance of hormones and the increase of testosterone during the pre-period hormonal shift. When you have thicker oil trying to get through a narrower opening, this creates the ideal environment where breakouts can now begin.

What can you do to prevent blemishes from appearing?

The key here is PREVENTION. We all have a plan of attack for when a blemish appears. This usually means bringing out all of your most powerful spot treatment to get them to go away as quickly as possible. However, there is not much awareness for figuring out how to prevent them from showing up in the first place. Here are some things to try to help stop monthly hormonal acne, including cystic acne.(key word being TRY)

Take vitamin B6 daily one week prior to your period.

This supplement may help ease PMS symptoms by improving metabolic function and hormone metabolism. Vitamin B6 can help the body manufacture neurotransmitters, such as serotonin, which aids in the body’s ability to cope with stress. I have some friends who feel this works well for helping prevent their hormonal acne. However, every person’s body chemistry is different so you’ll just have to experiment.

Modify your skin care routine slightly 4-7 days prior to the start of your period. (Using non-drying products with salicylic acid.)

The idea here is that you want to start creating an environment in your skin where breakouts are less likely to occur. Replace 2-3 products in your current regimen with ones that focus on clearing away bacteria.

My favourite  products with salicylic acid, glycolic acid and sulphur to use to help stop monthly hormonal acne are:

You skin Salicylic wash: I recommend using this product just once a day, at night. Since bacteria and oil build up on throughout the day, using this cleanser in the evening provides a beneficial anti-microbial cleansing.

 

T Pads from Zein Obagi– this toner has salicylic acid in it which offers an anti-microbial effect along with exfoliation to keep pores clear and free from bacteria.

Pixi Glow tonic: This has glycolic acids and help keep cells turning over so the skin will behave nicely.

PIXI GLOW TONIC

You skin Sulphur Mask: it has Sulphur which can help starve bacteria so it can’t breed while also helping to control oil production. After all, lack of oil means lack of breakouts. Lastly, it hydrates the skin while soothing hormonal-induced puffiness. This mask is excellent for creating an environment where fewer breakouts are likely to occur around the time of your period. You’ll use this every night after cleansing for a minimum of five minutes to clear surface bacteria within the pores while keeping the skin’s moisture barrier intact.

 

Learn the benefits of salicylic acid in helping to stop monthly hormonal acne.

Salicylic acid is a keratolytic beta hydroxy acid (BHA) ingredient famous for its ability to help clear out bacteria and remove breakout-clogging cells. It does this without irritating the skin and causing dryness. Drying out the skin will only cause more breakouts by creating surface cell buildup that can keep oil and bacteria trapped in the pore. Plus, adult skin types need to focus on keeping the skin in a healthy, hydrated state to encourage the slowdown of lines and wrinkles. You’ll usually find salicylic acid in cleansers, serums, and masks, as well as in acne spot treatments. It’s a fabulous ingredient with proven results in preventing the appearance of blemishes.

Treat the skin as needed with the use of gentle, calming, pore-clearing, antibacterial ingredients and you just may find that your monthly hormonal acne is a thing of the past.

 

 

6 WAYS TO PROTECT YOUR SKIN THIS SUMMER!!

6 WAYS TO PROTECT YOUR SKIN THIS SUMMER!!

A big concern for some people (not everyone though!) is how to prevent summer sun spots and pigmentation that appear during the hottest months of the year(especially those travelling to really hot countries this summer). Keeping the skin even-toned can be a challenge, especially from the heat, these skin care tips can make a huge difference.

Wear sunscreen

I know this is stating the obvious, but exposing your skin to the sun will bring out sun spots and pigmentation. If you are serious in your quest to prevent this, you have to apply more than you think you need. Protecting your skin from the sun has much more to do with how much you apply than it does to the SPF number listed on the bottle, so you really must load it on. And reapply every 90 mins if you are outside for long periods of time.

Limit exposure to both heat and sun.

Did you know that the heat given off from the sun will stimulate melanin activity, resulting in discolouration on the skin? This means that no matter how diligent you are about re-applying sunscreen, wearing a hat and staying in the shade, you still may not be able to avoid pigment from forming. If you can, avoid being in direct sunlight from 10am – 4pm which are the hottest hours of the day if you want to prevent summer sun spots.

Don’t lessen your acid exfoliation in the summer.

One of the keys to managing skin discolouration that can easily appear during the hot summer months is to keep exfoliating regularly. This can be with acids, at-home peels, gentle facial scrubs and clarasonic cleansing brushes. However, people get worried about doing so when spending more time outdoors since some exfoliating acids (like AHA’s) and retinol can make the skin slightly more sensitive. Guess what as long as you are not deliberately trying to get a tan. You should continue using your exfoliators.

Don’t cut back on using retinol in the summer.

Same goes for using retinol(at night), you’ll want to keep using it all summer long. If your goal is to prevent summer pigmentation, this will be very effective for doing so. With continued use, retinol slowly delivers incredible smoothing and resurfacing results while keeping pigment cells under control

Use a natural skin brightener daily under sunscreen.

In addition to exfoliants and retinol, applying a skin brightener daily to the skin will dramatically help suppress melanin cells to fade and prevent summer sun spots. Many skin-brightening products contain the ingredient hydroquinone, which is known to be a fairly controversial ingredient. If you want to use something more natural, I suggest using a cream light the YOUSKIN lightening face cream as it is a proven skin lightener and can make a big difference in keeping the skin even-toned

Consider wearing a hat

Protecting your skin by wearing a hat when outdoors is always a smart idea.

PS this is for people that care about tanning oh, and remember I am not saying if you do all these you are guaranteed to stay the same, I am just saying all this should help.

4 MISTAKES YOU DON’T WANT TO MAKE IF YOU HAVE ACNE PRONE SKIN

If you deal with acne and frequent breakouts like me, surely you have tried everything under the sun to get clearer skin. Hopefully you’re getting results with your efforts like I am. if you are not getting any results, then you might be making these common mistakes.

Mistake 1: Using Acne Spot Treatments Incorrectly 

As soon as you start to feel an acne bump underneath your skin is when it’s time to take action. You should already be following an acne-fighting regimen that includes a cleanser that contains salicylic acid and a gentle, non-comedogenic moisturizer. Once you feel the pimple starting to grow under the skin, apply a tiny dot of benzoyl peroxide or Sulphur. You should only be applying the spot treatment maximum three times a day. Any more will dry out the skin and irritate it. If you over treat, it can become red and the spot can be irritated and could actually become worse. When you spot treat the correct way you will be lessening the severity and duration of the zit.

Under no circumstances should you pick or pop your pimple. Trust us when we say it will heal a whole lot better if you spot treat without any of the picking or pulling In fact, just touching it alone might make matter worse by spreading the bacteria and oil on your fingers to other parts of your face.

You can’t always prevent a blemish from appearing, but you CAN control what happens when it does. I encourage you to be patient and let the healing process run its course. Your skin will be clearer and less scarred. It’s always best to work with Mother Nature, and never go against her. And I also encourage you to check out our Acne Kit which contains all of the mentioned blemish spot treatment products.

Mistake 2: Skipping Sunscreen

People who get acne are often so focused on dealing with their blemishes that they overlook one surprising blemish product — sunscreen! Those with acne-prone skin types will generally shy away from sunscreen because traditionally, formulas feel too heavy on the skin. Some formulas can actually worsen breakouts. But did you know that NOT using SPF daily can make the post-breakout red and dark scars linger for even longer?

The biggest problem with those who have acne is not the actual blemish (since most breakouts will heal up in 4-7 days). It’s the discoloration left behind from the skin’s injury. Acne scars are the result of inflammation within the dermis layer of the skin. Inflammation triggers pigment cells, resulting in red or purple discoloration. The severity of the scarring depends on how much you picked at the blemish.

Pigment cells stay active whenever your skin is exposed to UV. This means a blemish scar takes longer to fade. Sunscreen keeps pigment cells calm, so the fading process for blemish scars begins more quickly. Wearing a lightweight, non-pore clogging sunscreen will protect the damaged cells and give them time to properly heal, recover and fade. Your skin can get even-toned much faster.

Mistake 3: Over-Exfoliating 

Brushes like Clarisonic, or all rotating brushes for that matter, are marketed as cleansing brushes. we are led to believe that the skin isn’t really clean if we aren’t scrubbing. What most people don’t understand is that these are exfoliating tools rather than just cleansing tools. The oscillating bristles are designed to remove dead skin.

Exfoliating the skin is very effective for preventing blocked pores, but using a brush twice daily (which is recommended by most manufacturers) is equivalent to using a facial scrub twice daily. Most people know better than to manually scrub their skin twice a day.

Acne is an inflammatory disease of the skin. If you’re scrubbing too much, you’re actually creating more inflammation. This is especially true for people who really grind those brushes down hard on their skin.  Over-exfoliating will damage your skin’s natural moisture barrier, leaving it unbalanced. When people add other exfoliating products in their routine (acid serums and acid peels), in addition to the brush, it really stresses out the skin and adds to the inflammation.

Many people find their breakouts, redness and dryness diminish once they cut back on using the brush. If you’d really prefer to use a brush rather than a facial scrub, I recommend using it 3 days per week. If you want to up your exfoliation game in a safer and gentler way to clear breakouts, start using an acid serum with salicylic acid a few nights a week. The benefit is that the antibacterial ingredients enter the pore lining and help clear out breakout activity.

Mistake 4: Not Using Moisturizer 

People with acne-prone skin are paranoid about using moisturizer. They worry that it will clog their pores and not let the skin “breathe”. There are a few problems with this type of thinking. First, wearing moisturizer does not directly cause breakouts. Acne occurs when the cells that line the inner pores fail to fall off properly and the pore becomes clogged. This process happens whether you moisturize or not.

Those with oily, blemish-prone skin must use moisturizer no matter what. Your skin needs sufficient water to keep it healthy and balanced. Skipping moisturizer disrupts the skin’s proper water levels, and this dehydration process stimulates more oil production. This potentially causes more breakouts, as it encourages the formation of bacteria and the buildup of dead cells within the pores.

So there you have it…my  advice on what NOT to do. But hopefully this clarifies what WILL help you in your quest to get clearer, less-blemished skin.

My Melasma Story 😊

It’s been a minute. I had promised to follow on with my progress after my groundnut attack! Lol. As I clearly failed to practice what I preached., I was plagued with very congested, and unhappy skin. To top it off, my Melasma came back with a vengeance.

So much has happened since my last post, and a tonne of lessons learned. I will have to break them down into a series of posts over the next couple of weeks. Today I want to focus on how I stumbled upon a product which appears to have done the downright miraculous for my melasma. My next post will focus on how I got rid of my congestion and the pigmentation that followed.

I have suffered from Melasma most of my adult life. It’s comes and it goes.. and over the years I’ve realised various hormonal and or stress factors bring it on. What is Melasma?

Melasma is a very common patchy brown, tan, or blue-gray facial skin discoloration, usually seen in women in the reproductive years. It typically appears on the upper cheeks, upper lip, forehead, and chin of women 20-50 years of age. It is thought to be primarily related to external sun exposure, external hormones like birth control pills, and internal hormonal changes as seen in pregnancy. Mine is almost always on my upper cheek and lower eye . Basically I look like a panda 😊. No.. I’m not pregnant (phew)… but asides being a practicing aesthetician, I also work as a project manager and my stress levels can peak during busy periods.

I was back home in Nigeria for 2 weeks in January/February, and as glorious as the Sun was ..sun exposure can cause or exacerbate melasma because ultraviolet rays affect the cells that control pigment (melanocytes).

My skin went from sad and angry to furious and miserable and surprisingly, none of my normal go to products were working, as a matter of fact, things were getting worse. I’ll do a separate post on how it’s important to adapt your skin routine when visiting different climates- it was a sobering lesson I need to share ha ha.

As chance would have it… I literally stumbled upon this product in Nigeria, on my sisters dresser. I passively asked her to decant a tiny sample in a pot for me ( I always have empty sample pots in a bag- #junkieparaphenalia).

I started using this product once a day, at night, on the areas of the Melasma and saw a marked difference within 4 days!!!! Within 2 weeks, my Melasma was all but gone. As I mentioned, I only decanted a tiny bit of this product and at the end of the 2 weeks, I had run out 😢😢!!! Will I order this product for myself ?? MOST DEF! I used it once a day, night time only, and continued with my daily routine, which includes daily SPF.

Now, this is not a paid post, and whilst I didn’t purchase the product before leaving Nigeria, I have every intention of ordering it and keeping it on my shelf for use if and when my Melasma reoccurs. I know there is a lot of negative hype about ‘lightening products’ and this clearly is one.. but I for one, will try most things once before giving an opinion, and for me? This worked, and I recommend you find out for yourself.

The product is pictured below and links to purchase can be found here: https://youtopiabeauty.com. Or check out @youtopiabeauty on Instagram.

Why did I see such a big improvement when I first started a new skincare routine?

 

You very well might be correct in what you are seeing. What can happen with people is their skin can reach a visible plateau where they forget what their skin looked like before they started using new products. For example, let’s say your goal is to brighten your skin and you recently started using an exfoliating acid serum and a vitamin C serum, which you have never used before. These types of products will give fast  results, and it’s not uncommon for us to hear from our customers “I just started using your products two weeks ago and I can already see a huge difference!” What occurs is that once these type of products have started to fade unwanted pigment from your skin and create a more even-toned look, there are fewer results that you might see over time. It’s simply a perception situation in that what you are seeing now is the new normal.

Can my skin products lose their effectiveness over time?

The simple answer is, no. Your skin doesn’t build up an immunity to skincare products over time. They don’t just one day decide they aren’t going to work anymore. This is because there is no direct mechanism for your skin to become immune to the effects of products. When you apply a product, your skin’s receptors will take it in, and, assuming it’s a well-formulated product, it will go to work immediately to perform its function.

However, there is an exception. In the case of using topical prescription retinoid, your skin can build up a tolerance which will result in fewer negative side effects over time.