4 Black Skincare Tips You Should Know this Summer
People with darker skin tones face a unique set of skincare needs according to the American Academy of Dermatology.
“Skin conditions are color blind, occurring in patients of every skin tone, but certain conditions can affect patients with skin of color more frequently and more severely,” said certified dermatologist Neelam Vashi, MD, FAAD, and director of the Boston University Center for Ethnic Skin.
According to Dr. Vashi, some of the most common problems reported by patients with skin of color include hypopigmentation, which involves patches of skin becoming lighter than the surrounding skin, and hyperpigmentation, which involves patches of skin becoming darker than the surrounding skin. These conditions are more visible in patients with darker skin tones, she said, and research has shown that pigmentation problems can have a negative effect on patients’ quality of life.
To best protect, nourish and treat skin of color, check out these tips and products that can help promote healthier skin
Cleanse and moisturize
Some research suggests that darker skin loses moisture quicker than some lighter skin tones. To avoid this and to prevent the skin from looking ashy, apply a daily moisturizer that contains humectants, such as glycerin or hyaluronic acid. Humectants retain moisture in the skin.
Gentle facial cleansers formulated specifically for dry skin, like micellar water, are a perfect option. They use the power of tiny oil molecules to gently clear away surface-level impurities and makeup from the skin without drying it out.
Check out the Micellar Cucumber Aloe Facial Cleansing Water from Marla Rene, who created her natural skincare line for women of color.
Always wear sunscreen
One of the biggest myths about black skin is that it does not burn and that Black people do not need to wear sunscreen. This is far from true — everyone should use adequate sun protection.
The AAD recommends using a waterproof sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30 that protects against both ultraviolet (UV) A and UVB rays.
While sunscreens are traditionally very thick, chalky, and leave the skin looking pasty, nowadays there are a lot of elegant choices where sunscreens are ultra-sheer for dark skin tones.
Black Girl Sunscreen SPF 30 is a highly reviewed sunscreen made by women of color for people of color.
It’s important to practice sun safety from a young age as well. Black Girl Sunscreen has also made a sunscreen for kids with SPF 50!
Treatments for hyperpigmentation
Dark spots may occur on black skin when the skin overproduces melanin, the substance that gives skin its color. Dark spots can also occur as a result of inflammation or trauma to the skin, such as from acne, bug bites, burns, cuts, reaction to skin care products, psoriasis and other skin conditions.
Ingredients that help reduce the appearance of existing dark spots include retinoids, hydroquinone, koji acid, and Vitamin C.
Cleansing the skin and wearing sunscreen daily can also help reduce and prevent dark spots.
Treatments for eczema
Eczema is a common skin condition that causes inflammation and intense itching. According to the AAD, one in 10 Americans has eczema, with the condition being more common in children of African and Asian descent.
Adrienne Blake, founder of Bake N Co skincare company, developed an all-natural remedy to help her and her children’s eczema. Her product solves issues with problematic skin such as eczema, psoriasis, and dark spots.