Beautiful man

To say I take skincare seriously is a gross understatement.  I approach my routine with the same focus and precision that a physique competitor applies to his diet.  Blame it on some unusual skin growing pains.

As a kid, I suffered from eczema, which I outgrew.  During my teenage years, I once contracted a fungal infection in my face, which was basically just bad acne.  Because I have dark skin, a serious zit can leave behind dark spots that take weeks to go away.  To combat acne, I went to my trusted dermatologist every two weeks for five years straight.  And don’t get me started on shaving.  From razor bumps to irritation, I’m prone to any and every issue.  

So, what does a dark-skinned guy with sensitive skin do to protect himself?  If you said, ‘live in a bubble’, you might be on to something.  Luckily, I have a few options that are less extreme.

Cleanse Like You Mean It

Cleansing is the foundation of my routine (and should be yours, too).  The thought of going to sleep at night without washing my face gives me the heebie jeebies.  

I have combination skin, meaning my T-zone (forehead and nose) resemble an oil slick while the rest of my face cries for moisture.  Oil cleansers work best for me.  The cleansing oil works in tandem with the skin’s natural oil to lift dirt from the skin.  I’ve found nothing gives me a more thorough cleaning.  I love Burt’s Bees Facial Cleansing Oil.  I use it twice a day, and it never leaves me too oily.

Toning Isn’t Just for Muscles

Step two in the process involves using toner.  Though this might not be necessary for everyone, I’ve found using a toner twice a day removes any dirt my cleanser may have missed (it’s not perfect).  Plus, it strengthens the surface of my skin and helps me maintain a clear complexion.  My favorite?  No7’s Beautiful Skin Balancing Toner for Normal and Oily skin.  I pour a little onto a cotton pad and gently wipe my face a couple times over.

It’s Okay to Spot Train

Even when your skincare routine is serious business, you can still get pimples.  That’s just life.  I always keep a strong spot treatment on deck just in case.  Clean & Clear’s Advantage Acne Spot Treatment is ridiculously powerful.  It’s one of the best over-the-counter acne medications on the market.

well dressed manHydrate

Last but not least, I moisturize.  However, I have a two-pronged approach.  I use No7’s Beautiful Skin Day Cream, which has an SPF of 15 for some daytime sun protection.  At night, I use the complementary Night Cream, which is a bit stronger.  I favor night creams because the skin does most of its repair work while you sleep.  Ideally, you could use the same moisturizer twice a day.  If you do this, I’d recommend Aveeno’s Clear Complexion moisturizer, which works wonders.

Don’t Skip Your Vitamins

I balanced, healthy diet and water consumption are important factors in my skincare.  But most important are my vitamins.  I swear by Olly’s Vibrant Skin and Undeniable Beauty vitamins.  I’ve noticed a significant difference in my pre- and post-Olly skin.  I can easily maintain that dewy, fresh glow that every celeb seems to have round the clock.

It takes an army to maintain great skin.  If all these products are too much to handle, at least remember this: cleanse, tone, moisturize.  CTM?  No, I can’t think of a cool acronym for this.  Just take care of your skin.

Jefferey Spivey