Apologies for such long hiatus. Writer’s block, LOL.
In this post, I’ll share you what I currently use for morning skincare routine after using Adapalene & Retinoic Acid at night.
FYI, Adapalene & Retinoic Acid are two prescription-strength creams that will definitely open our pores, but they won’t exfoliate them. We still need help from exfoliating actives like AHA or BHA, in the morning. You can choose only one active in one product (like toner only or serum only), but if your skin can stand it, go all the way from toner to serum.
CLEANSER/MORNING MASK: SEBAMED CLEAR FACE ANTI BACTERIAL CLEANSING FOAM Contains Montaline C40 that will zap acne bacterias and Panthenol.
SERUM: DUVADERM CLARIFYING SERUM This contains 0,5% Molecular BHA
MOISTURIZER: SEBAMED CLEAR FACE CARE GEL & KRAVE OAT SO SIMPLE WATER CREAM As you know I’m on my 3 Step Moisture Method, that’s why I’m using double moisturizer after natural moisturizer which is water. Steer clear of any actives in the moisturizers’ ingredients lists.
SUNSCREEN: SKIN AQUA UV SUPER MOISTURE GEL SPF 50+ PA++++ It has been my HG because it didn’t trigger my Fungal Acne & Comedo.
If you’ve been reading my blog posts and follow me on IG, you’ll notice one thing missing from my skincare regime. It’s Vitamin C.
First, I don’t enjoy Vitamin C serums turn brown due to oxidation. To think about my hard-earned money, and it turned bad easily, I don’t think so. And that oxidation process is obviously a destructive process, so if you put that on your skin, it will cause further skin damage. Ouch!
Second, Vitamin C is a great anti-oxidant, but it’s possible to become a pro-oxidant when in contact with metal/iron. Unfortunately nowadays, iron is a significant pollutant in the air and water (according to the FDA), and that means our skin comes in contact with iron every day. So, if we apply Vitamin C and our skin comes in contact with the air, it was like inviting problems to occur.
Last but not least, Vitamin C is one tough cookie to be mixed with others in the skincare ingredients list. It should never mix with AHA, BHA, Retinol, and Benzoyl Peroxide. If you’re a fan of layering skincare like me, better watch out and read ingredients list very carefully.
Moral of this post, my skin can’t take a topical Vitamin C, especially in concentrated serum format. It broke me out, caused redness and it tingled badly. So I did some research online, and I did find some interesting facts. Apparently, antioxidants in skincare are BAD when they are in concentrated form and disrupt the body’s natural ability to fight off bacteria.
TIPS & TRICKS:
Use Vitamin C in other format than serum for lighter percentage. Personally I use GOOD MOLECULES NIACINAMIDE BRIGHTENING TONER. It contains 2-O-Ethyl Ascorbic Acid (number 6 on the ingredients’ list), a quite stable form of Vitamin C
Try the serum as a dark spot treatment only. Resist the temptation to apply it all over the face. I had great success with GOODAL GREEN TANGERINE VITA C DARK SPOT SERUM, that helps to reduce the appearance of dark spots.
This is going to be a simple review, just because this moisturizer is that simple.
Simple ingredients’ list, simple packaging, and simple intended customers. Basically, those who want to simply moisturize without worrying that it’ll break you out or irritate you further. And the best part, it is safe for Fungal Acne! (Finally, a Krave Beauty product that’s safe for FA).
It fits right in to my current 3 Steps Moisture Method craze (thanks to Olena Beley who commented to my IG video earlier this month). Read here if you missed my post about Olena’s tips.
I use this as the final step of my hydrating steps, because it does contain Capric Triglyceride and Squalane, the perfect emollients to seal all in. And being on Adapalene journey, my skin also needs soothing moisturizer, so this just completes me, by having Oatmeal Extract as one of the ingredient. Yes, I also mix this with EVALEN Adapalene Krim 0.1% to reduce the concentration and lessen the risk of Adapalene’s side effects. And this moisturizer helped me a lot during my Adapalene’s nights (so far I’m only at week 1, but I’ll write about the journey soon).
Look at its’ luscious white and milky texture. It has no scent, and it just glides softly when applied. It also mix wonderfully with almost everything that I applied before it (actives, hydrating toner, humectant). It melts right away in contact with the skin, and absorb really well without leaving any film or dewy look.
It’s silicone free, gluten free, fragrance free and essentials oil free. For me personally, there are only two misses for this moisturizer, it still contains Butylene Glycol which has comedogenic rating (luckily it didn’t trigger mine). And the jar packaging. Being a practical girl, I don’t really dig plastic jar. It took a while for me to finally close the lid properly. I wish it comes in pump packaging instead.
Been to Seoul, South Korea and what I saw there was really eye-opener. If you see the K-Drama and all the actors & actresses have flawless, poreless and unblemished skin, trust me, those who sold street-food as a living in Seoul, have exactly the same skin. They are fortunate to have such a blessed skin, it’s in their genes.
However, I do have to admit that their K-beauty skincare products are the best and highly-effective for toners, essences, hydration and sunscreens. They are also great at super fast innovation (new ingredients) and good-looking packaging. As for actives, personally I’d prefer the western brands, (again) based on my experiments.
So, here’s my round up for K-beauty skincare products that are safe for Fungal Acne prone skin.
ESSENCE: AMORE PACIFIC VINTAGE SINGLE EXTRACT ESSENCE, I’M FROM MUGWORT ESSENCE
TONER: SOMEBYMI AHA BHA PHA 30 DAYS MIRACLE TONER, DEAR KLAIRS SUPPLE PREPARATION UNSCENTED TONER
CLEANSER: HEIMISH ALL CLEAN GREEN FOAM, PYUNKANG YUL ACNE FACIAL CLEANSER
AMPOULE: CNP LABORATORY MUGENER AMPOULE, LEEGEEHAAM GROW VITA PROPOLIS AMPOULE (RENAME TO DR CEURACLE ROYAL VITA PROPOLIS 33 AMPOULE)
As life is not simple right now, it’s best not to over-complicate our skincare regime by trying to understand those long lists of ingredients.
Yes, there are sites for help like skincarisma, folliculitisscout, cosdna and incidecoder to break them down. But, I truly believe keeping it simple is the best. Especially if your skin is troublesome like mine, it’s a good feeling to know that we don’t layer hundreds of ingredients on our skin.
Here, I will list my favorite minimal ingredients skincare products (that only use ten or less ingredients for each product), which are also safe for Fungal-Acne prone skin.
EAU THERMALE AVÈNE TOLÉRANCE EXTREME EMULSION Contains only 6 ingredients, this is a staple in my moisturizing routine. Because it is an emulsion, I found it lighter than any moisturizer.
SIMPLE KIND TO SKIN REFRESHING WASH GEL Made with only 9 ingredients, this is an affordable face cleanser (even for sensitive skin). Easy to find at our nearest drugstore. It is a face cleanser, so it cleanse. That’s it and don’t expect something magical out of it.
LA ROCHE-POSAY SEROZINC Basically it contains only 3 ingredients: water, sodium chloride and zinc. Truly a must have mist for me, I don’t dig mist with too much gimmicky stuffs.
AMORE PACIFIC VINTAGE SINGLE EXTRACT ESSENCE Minimal ingredients with maximum price (LOL). There’s only 6 ingredients inside this luxurious bottle of essence. If you have the budget to buy, splurge. But to tell you the truth, I skip essence step most of the time.
Disclaimer: I live in Jakarta, Indonesia with (you can say) a limited skincare products legally available in our retails.
Luckily, we do have market places choices with online stores that carry imported skincare brands. We just have to make sure they are legit and not fake. I do have some recommendations for online stores in market place that I usually purchased from, please feel free to DM me on my IG @shintarosvita.
Back to the topic, for those who asked me on products that they can easily get (especially for Fungal-Acne rookies out there) this one’s for you. Basically all you need is a good cleanse (first and second ones), toner, treatment and sunscreen.
If your Fungal-Acne is relatively new, I do recommend you to stay out of makeup until they heal. But if you have to put on makeup anyway, look for non-waterproof makeup and sunscreen, so you don’t have to use cleansing balm or oil as a first cleanser. Opt for cleansing water instead to remove your makeup (except for eyes, you might need a specific eye makeup remover).
Being a number one choice for me for such a long time, before they are legally available in Indonesia. Removes makeup like a charm and it feels like swiping your makeup away with water without leaving any oily residue. But still needs to wash with second cleanser and water, okay. Where to buy: Drugstores
It didn’t foam up much, but I love how it cleans comfortably. Comes in a milky-gel texture and without fragrance, this is a great second cleanser for Fungal-Acne prone skin. Where to buy: Style Korean Indonesia
No fuzz daily toner. Feels like water without tackiness and will lift any leftover from your first and second cleanser. Where to buy: I believe they sold this exclusively at Guardian Indonesia.
Combat fungal acne like a champ with sulfur. And this lotion contains 6.6% of Precipitated Sulphur. Where to buy: Pharmacies
You know how hard it is to find sunscreen that are safe for Fungal Acne, right? No worries, this sunscreen is safe, super affordable and doesn’t leave white cast. Where to buy: Drugstores
Obviously, before my first fungal-acne attacked in 2018, I didn’t even know which ingredients triggered them. But after the healing process, my whole skincare regimen has changed a lot. To give you a clearer idea, here’s my minimal skincare routine back in 2018.
Here’s my updated minimal skincare routine now, please note that these are during #stayathome periods (you’d be surprised, the more time I have the simpler the routine becomes).
CLEANSE: First thing that I apply in the morning, cotton pads soaked with warm water to wipe away oil residue and nighttime products. Then I cleanse with TATCHA THE DEEP CLEANSE, which I intend to finish before it expired. Luckily mine is a travel size ones.
TONE: I never skip toner, because I believe if I did, my pores will clog more. My current fave is EUCERIN DERMATOCLEAN CLARIFYING TONER, it’s not an exfo toner or hydrating ones, it’s a perfect daily toner that won’t irritate sensitive skin.
TREAT: I skip moisturizer in the morning, just because this #stayathome period. Instead, I do something that I rarely did back in the old days. AM Treatment! I dab on acne treatment and dark spot treatment on specific spots. My current faves: DERMA E VERY CLEAR SPOT TREATMENT (for pimples) and GOODAL GREEN TANGERINE VITA C DARK SPOT SERUM (for post acne marks). Both can be use on daytime, so I maximize this period to make sure pimples and dark spots are treated during daytime, too.
If I have to catch some sun in the morning (which I do lately every morning), this is my HG sunscreen: SKIN AQUA UV SUPER MOISTURE GEL SPF50+ PA++++. I admit it’s hard to find a new replacement for this. It’s not waterproof, so easy to clean with just micellar water (no need for balm or oil).
CLEANSE: I will use BIODERMA SENSIBIO H2O to cleanse my leftover sunscreen and continue with PETER THOMAS ROTH IRISH MOOR MUD PURIFYING CLEANSING GEL. I use the cleansing gel with my FOREO LUNA3.
TONE: As lazy as I can be these days, I only use ALPHA H LIQUID GOLD, alternating with EUCERIN DERMATOCLEAN CLARIFYING TONER.
SERUM: On my non-exfo days, I apply GLOSSIER SUPER PURE SERUM.
TREATMENT: I apply DRUNK ELEPHANT A PASSIONI RETINOL CREAM twice a week, topped with DRUNK ELEPHANT T.L.C FRAMBOOS GLYCOLIC NIGHT SERUM. I love this combination for my never ending clogged pores problem.
HYDRATE: Last step for PM routine is to hydrate, with my old time favorite, VICHY MINERAL 89 – SKIN FORTIFYING DAILY BOOSTER. I love this because it’s gel, absorbs easily and feels so light on skin.
Super glad that 2019 is almost over. Definitely not one of my best year, but I’m sure you don’t want to hear about it (LOL).
Just a quick update on my skin condition, I believe when I got older, my skin easily and rapidly reacted to skincare products. Bumps and adult/hormonal acnes are still easily appeared. The good thing is, I’ve managed to control my fungal acne come back with the right products. In fact, I didn’t suffer any fungal-acne breakout this year.
After trial & error here and there, I became more aware on what ingredients that actually work, or in the other hand, caused the problems. In my case, I try to avoid:
Butylene Glycol, because it might trigger comedones.
Centella Asiatica, because it’s not good if you are still suffering from acne or having acne-prone skin like mine.
Essential Oils or any facial oil, because my skin didn’t react well after using them.
So yes, it became harder to find skincare products for me. Other than avoiding non-safe fungal acne ingredients, now I also have to check those ingredients above. And trust me, it’s not easy!
This (much shorter) list is based on my own personal experience and after checking all the ingredients on cosdna and skincarisma. No worries, this list is mostly different from my 2018 list (with additional categories and check out my HG products with *).
Enjoy reading and happy holidays, folks! Make sure you spent your money wisely when it comes to skincare products (talking like a true champ, LOL).
Yes, I have different morning and night routine (and products, too), so let’s break them down on different post. Please note that they’re all fungal-acne safe (based on skincarisma.com checking). Let’s do my morning routine first, shall we?
mild gentle foaming wash (DHC Morning Face Wash)
Acne Toner (this is not an exfoliating toner, but I still use hydrating toner
after this, just to be safe)
Essence Toner (it might feel tacky at first, but after a few taps, you will
know why this is my favorite essence)