BEST OF 2019: FUNGAL-ACNE SAFE SKINCARE (NEW PRODUCTS)

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:

  1. Butylene Glycol, because it might trigger comedones.
  2. Centella Asiatica, because it’s not good if you are still suffering from acne or having acne-prone skin like mine.
  3. 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).

MAKEUP REMOVER:

  • Hada Labo Gokujyun Premium Micelle Cleansing *
  • Eau Thermale Avene 3 in 1 Make-Up Remover

FOAMING CLEANSER:

  • Drunk Elephant Pekee Bar *
  • Drunk Elephant Beste No 9 Jelly Cleanser
  • Patyka Paris Detox Cleansing Foam

MIST:

  • La Roche-Posay Serozinc *
  • La Roche-Posay Thermal Spring Water
  • Vichy Mineralizing Thermal Water

EXFOLIATING TONER:

  • Biologique Recherche Lotion P50T *
  • Alpha-H Liquid Gold
  • Cosrx Aha 7 Whitehead Power Liquid

TONER:

  • Patyka Paris Anti-Blemish Toner *
  • Thayers Facial Toner Unscented
  • Eucerin Dermatoclean Clarifying Toner

BOOSTER:

  • Vichy Mineral 89 *

SERUM:

  • Drunk Elephant B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Serum *
  • Cos De Baha Niacinamide 10 Serum
  • Aqulabo Vinyasa Calming Serum
  • The Ordinary Argireline Solution 10%

ESSENCE:

  • I’m From Mugwort Essence *
  • Isntree Hyaluronic Acid Water Essence
  • Amore Pacific Vintage Single Extract Essence

MOISTURIZER:

  • Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Oil-Free Gel Cream
  • Eau Thermale Avene Tolerance Extreme Emulsion *

SPOT TREATMENT:

  • De La Cruz Sulfur Ointment *
  • Fourth Ray Beauty Later Hater Spot Treatment

SUNSCREEN:

  • Skin Aqua UV Super Moisture Gel SPF 50+PA++++ *
  • Nivea Super Water Gel SPF 50 PA+++

PHOTOS: SHINTA ROSVITA

FUNGAL-ACNE SAFE SKIN-CARE PRODUCTS FROM LOCAL (READ: INDONESIAN) BRANDS

I’ve received lots of DM on my IG about this topic, and I’m trying to find ones that are safe for fungal-acne prone skin. Feel free to add to this list, please DM me on my IG, here.

If you’ve been reading my blog, you will know that I did recommend to do the basic skincare routine while dealing with Fungal Acne. You can build up your routine once they’re completely gone. Personally, I will stick with cleansing, toning and hydrating steps. That’s it. No makeup added, just the good ol’ basic skincare routine.

CLEANSE

ELSHESKIN DEEP CLEANSING SENSITIVE

TONE

VIVA ASTRINGENT CUCUMBER

HYDRATE

NAMEERA HYDRATING GLOW ESSENCE WATER

PHOTOS: SHINTA ROSVITA

NIACINAMIDES FOR FUNGAL ACNE

If you’ve been reading my posts and follow my IG, you’ll know how much I appreciate Niacinamide. Even back in the days when my fungal acne were still around…until today.

You can read somewhere else about WTH is Niacinamide and what would it do to your skin, but here I’m going to share you my favorites and my not so much. But for sure, all of the stuffs I mentioned are fungal acne safe. Tried & Tested by yours truly. Your welcome.

GLOSSIER SUPER PURE

Unlike most people who purchased Glossier’s makeup products as their first encounter to this loveable brand, I bought this. I remember I was so disappointed of The Ordinary Niacinamide because it clumps, then I decided to buy the more expensive Niacinamide serum out there. And this didn’t disappoint me from the first hello.

They used to sell the 15ml version, but now the latest version is 30ml, bigger bottle. With 5% Niacinamide and Zinc PCA, it’s also paraben free, fragrance free and vegan.

Why I love this? It contains no Butylene Glycol which I personally believe can be comedogenic. And I love the feel when it glides smoothly without clumps. Totally a winner, considering the hefty price tag. I believe this is my fifth bottle already.  

PAULA’S CHOICE 10% NIACINAMIDE BOOSTER

I heard so much good things about this. So, even though it’s more expensive than Glossier, I decided to splurge.

It contains more percentage of Niacinamide, mind you. This contains 10% of Niacinamide with additional Sodium Hyaluronate for hydration and Allantoin for skin-soothing.

Usually I will mix this with essence, because unlike Glossier, this is a bit sticky when used alone.

Unfortunately this contains Butylene Glycol which I try to avoid lately, but since I like to restock, and already purchased this second bottle, WTH. I will try to finish this serum booster, anyway.

COS DE BAHA NIACINAMIDE 10 SERUM

Like seriously guys, I am so glad I stumbled upon this serum while browsing religiously online. This is like the cheapest serum I’ve ever bought in my life and it’s not even a local brand. It costs under IDR100K, for a 30ml bottle.

Yes, all the good stuffs are in there. 10% Niacinamide, Pure Hyaluronic Acid, 1% Zinc PCA and Licorice. It’s a South Korean brand, and they claim to use 78% organic ingredients. Free of sulfates, paraben, colorant, alcohol and fragrance, too.

I love this, it is that good. Similar feel like Glossier, without the price. For sure I’m going to repurchase this (currently checking what to buy next from this underrated brand).

2 SOL FACIAL RECOVERY BOOSTER

Unlike those three mentioned above (which have clear transparent texture), this has yellowish liquid shade. I believe it’s because of Ethyl Ascorbic Acid, aka Vitamin C, one of the main ingredients here. Yes, this one mix 10% Niacinamide and Vitamin C, people. But no worries, Ethyl Ascorbic Acid is a very stable Vitamin C and soluble in water and oil. I didn’t find mine getting oxidized after awhile (just make sure to close it tightly after usage), so there you have it.

Unfortunately, this also has Butylene Glycol in it (like Paula’s Choice one). And I don’t like the packaging, it has no stopper. So, I’m also trying to finish this first (and last) bottle.

PHOTOS: SHINTA ROSVITA

STRESS ACNE: WTH?

Been in a very tough situation lately, I have to admit this is not a very good year for me. And I’m sure you’ve heard it everywhere, when you are stressed, so does your skin. Just look at my stress acnes!

I’ve been fighting them for about two weeks now, but I know I’m not alone. So I decided to do some research online and write down this post.

WHAT CAUSED STRESS ACNE?
Obviously, STRESS. And if your skin is already acne-prone, stress can make acne worse. You see, hormones released and produced during stress will increase further skin inflammation. And for some people, stress will vigorously make them pick at their acnes which can cause bigger problem like scars and such.

WHAT DIFFERS NORMAL ACNE & STRESS ACNE?
I personally believe stress acne is redder than ordinary ones, and doesn’t necessarily have pus in it. Sometime, it formed a painful cyst too. And also what I personally experienced, stress acne will show up on areas you’ve never had acnes before. I also experienced more blackheads and whiteheads.

HOW TO MANAGE STRESS ACNE?
Seriously guys, if I told you not to stress over it and stay calm, you’ll kill me, right? I tried to manage my stress first, by hanging out with friends and trying not to bring work problems home. So, find your chill first, then try to handle the stress acne. First, drink more water, less caffeinated & dairy drinks and alcohol. Then, do basics skincare like cleanse, tone and moisturize. Don’t overdo things like adding more unnecessary steps to your skincare routine. Or worse, do cleansing more than twice a day. Remember to stick to your basic routine and products.

MY BASIC SKINCARE ROUTINE DURING STRESS ACNE

FACE CLEANSER: DRUNK ELEPHANT PEKEE BAR

This stuff is MAGIC in a bar form. It’s fragrance and soap-free, doesn’t contain any essential oil and have honey in it (you know how I love honey).

TONER: SIMPLE KIND TO SKIN SOOTHING FACIAL TONER

The name said it all. It is a soothing toner, feels and looks like water. I’d recommend to stay away from exfoliating toner when your skin is stress. Choose a hydrating toner that’s light and alcohol free.

SERUM: VICHY MINERAL 89

Why 89? Because it does contain up to 89% of natural origin Hyaluronic Acid. This will protect skin from pollution, stress and fatigue. And I chose hydration serum during my stress acne period, rather than my regular Niacinamide or vitamin C serum (it’s like taking a break from the hard stuffs). I also skip moisturizer after this, just because I feel this already helped with the hydration.

SPF (AM ROUTINE): SKIN AQUA UV SUPER MOISTURE GEL SPF50+ PA++++

Long time favorite of mine. SPF in a gel form, easy to absorb, doesn’t leave any white cast and never broke me out. It’s super light in texture and good for makeup base too.

MORE TIPS:

  • Don’t overkill your stress acne with spot treatments, especially those with tough ingredients such as Benzoyl Peroxide or Salicylic Acid. Trust me, they will look worse (looks more red & irritated).
  • Instead, try to hydrate your skin as much as you can. Personally, I love to spray my face with Avene Thermal Spring Water during the day.
  • And also, try to touch up your SPF during the day. Usually, I reapply every four hours even though I stayed indoor most of the time. Because I wear makeup, I like to use Kose Suncut Protect UV Spray SPF50+ PA++++.
  • Double cleanse if you have makeup on. My all time favorite is Banila Co Clean It Zero
  • Stay clear from anything acid and retinol while stress acne attacked. Treat them first with tender, love and care.

PHOTOS: SHINTA ROSVITA

FUNGAL ACNE GONE: NOW WHAT?

Dedicated to those who asked me on IG DM, “SHALL I STILL BE USING FUNGAL-ACNE SAFE PRODUCTS NOW THAT THE FUNGAL ACNE IS GONE?”

Well, first, disclaimer: I am not a dermatologist or skin expert. I’m only sharing based on my own trial & error.

Q: Shall I stay away (still) from skincare products with fungal acne trigger ingredients?

A: From my own experience, when it comes to wash-off products (only stay on skin for maximum 2 minutes), I’d go for non-safe fungal acne products.

Q: What kind of wash-off products are you talking about?

A: First cleansers are your best bet. Cleansing balm, Micellar Water, Lip & Eye Makeup Remover and/or Face Wash.

All of these are not safe for fungal acne, but didn’t trigger ones as long as used correctly

Q: How about other products?

A: Personally, I will stick to fungal-acne safe products for stay on skincare products (just to be safe), like toner, essence, serum, ampoule, moisturizer, and even for SPF. But if you are bored or simply just want to try other products, maybe you can try non-safe for fungal acne SPF, because it’s the last layer on skin and won’t absorb anyway.

PHOTOS: SHINTA ROSVITA

NEW & INTERESTING NATURAL INGREDIENTS FOR SKINCARE

Frankly speaking, I am not an all-out green and natural skincare products seeker. I mean, I still believe in hard-core acids and stuffs. But, lately there are new and interesting natural ingredients on the skincare market. Thought I’d give it a shot.

HIBISCUS

Hibiscus is a beautiful flower and surprisingly has skincare benefits. It is one of the most powerful anti-aging plant actives, so it’s known as nature’s botox for its’ firming and lifting ability. This flower is also rich in antioxidants to help skin fight free radicals from pollution and UV. But please aware that hibiscus is a fragrant plant, therefore it might affect those who are sensitive to scents on your skincare product.

NONI

In Indonesia where I live, it’s not rare to drink the juice. But what do we know? Noni fruit extract is great for healing and rejuvenating skin due to its abundance of vitamins (A & C) plus antioxidants to protect against free radicals. One thing that interest me the most about one of the benefits is: Noni has antibacterial and anti-fungal properties! Whoa! It might be good for fungal-acne, no?

EGGPLANT

Again, where I live, people will eat cooked eggplants (though I don’t like it). I know it’s a healthy food, but little that I know it’s full of vitamin C. And when I did research for eggplant on the net, it contains ‘lupeol’ (some kind of substance that’s highly effective on problematic skin). It’s also antibacterial and anti-ageing. Pretty potent veggie, right?

PHOTOS: SHINTA ROSVITA

IF YOU HAVE FUNGAL-ACNE, ‘BE FRIENDS’ WITH THESE INGREDIENTS

SULFUR

Known for its antifungal and antibacterial properties, you’ll easily find this ingredient in the treatment for acne and such. If you can stand its’ distinct scent, that’s great, because it does work to get rid of fungal acne.

PROPOLIS

I read in simpleskincarescience.com that there are studies that showed that propolis extract exhibits antimicrobial activity. And I love how propolis does give a glowing effect on skin.

KETOCONAZOLE

Unfortunately, this ingredient mostly came in a shampoo form. But no worries, you can use this shampoo as a 5 minutes wash-off face mask. Compared to other antifungals, like Zinc Pyrithione, Ketoconazole is the champ.

TEA TREE OIL

Tea tree oil has strong antimicrobial properties against Malassezia aka fungal acne. Personally, I tried to stay away from the oil per se, just because I found it too thick and might irritate my sensitive skin. So I chose product that actually contains one (it’s diluted with other ingredients).

PHOTOS: SHINTA ROSVITA

WHAT TO DO IF YOUR HG PRODUCT STOPS WORKING?

ALTERNATE, people.

Is it just me? Or lots of you experienced the same thing as me? My skin easily got immune, usually after finishing two of the same skincare product. Weird but true.

That’s why I found a way to alternate between products, just to make sure their effectiveness on my fungal-acne prone skin. So, after finishing one product, I usually move to another brand with similar ingredients and purposes. Then, I’d move back to the old one.

EXFOLIATING TONER

HADA LABO MILD PEELING LOTION & SOME BY MI AHA BHA PHA 30 DAYS MIRACLE TONER

The similarities: both are fungal acne safe and contain water plus butylene glycol.

The difference: Hada Labo only has 7 ingredients, while Somebymi has 22.

Thoughts: they are both mild enough to use everyday as exfoliating toner, but I try to use it every other day to avoid over exfoliating. And usually I just use exfoliating toner at night time.

BOOSTER

PAULA’S CHOICE 10% NIACINAMIDE BOOSTER & 2SOL FACIAL RECOVERY BOOSTER

The similarities: both are fungal acne safe and contain niacinamide, panthenol, sodium hyaluronate and allantoin.

The difference: 2Sol only has 19 ingredients, while Paula’s Choice has 24.

Thoughts: They both will be better if mixed with ampoule or moisturizer, as they might be sticky if stand alone. Both have same clear watery texture.

ESSENCE

COSRX ADVANCED SNAIL 96 MUCIN POWER ESSENCE & BENTON SNAIL BEE HIGH CONTENT ESSENCE

The similarities: both contain snail secretion filtrate, panthenol, betaine, arginine, butylene glycol and allantoin

The differences: Cosrx only has 12 ingredients, while Benton has 25. Corsx is safe for fungal acne, while Benton (unfortunately) has polysorbate 20 (known as one of fungal acne trigger) in their ingredients list.

Thoughts: Cosrx is more gloopy (literally like snail mucin), while Benton is less gloopy. Unfortunately Benton reformulated this and added Polysorbate 20 in their new formula, so it might not be safe for fungal acne.

PHOTOS: SHINTA ROSVITA

CLEAN BEAUTY FOR FUNGAL ACNE

I’m sure a lot of you already familiar with the term of “Clean Beauty”.

Lately I’ve become more aware of this, especially after my first strike of fungal-acne back in April 2018. After that 1st attack, I read the ingredients label on the back like I’ve never been before. And luckily, now we’re blessed with skincare ingredients search engine that can identify the safety of most products that we use every day for our skin.

Now it’s harder for companies to market and brainwash us with their products, because (thanks to the awesome technologies) we can find out by ourselves. For certain, I can’t be fooled by the word “natural” or “organic” or “pure” anymore.

After some research online, the terms “Clean Beauty” refers to lots of definition, but I guess I can simplify it to non-toxic. Non-toxic products that are made without ingredients linked to harmful health effects (from simple and short term ones like skin irritation, to scary and long term ones like cancer). If you search online, you will find a lot of harmful ingredients with familiar names like Propylene Glycol which actually is an antifreeze, or Sodium Hydroxide which is used as a drain cleaner. Yes, nasty chemicals indeed. So, it’s not about eco-conscious anymore, but more to health-conscious.

I’m trying my best to join this “Clean Beauty” route. Having fungal-acne prone skin, I do have to check every single time I want to purchase skincare product. Thanks to simpleskincarescience.com, I know I have to stay away from Ester (alcohol and fatty acid) and its’ friends like Polysorbate. So, initially I looked for harmful fungal-acne trigger ingredients, but turned out those ingredients are also harmful in any other ways. Lucky us, the industry (especially personal-care ones) are slowly but surely cleaning up, for more aware consumers. After the US, K-Beauty is also trying to clean up to serve the new generation of more aware consumers.

My favorite Clean Beauty products for Fungal Acne are:

I’M FROM MUGWORT ESSENCE

It consists only one ingredient: 100% of Artemisia Princeps Extract (aka Mugwort). It’s known for its’ soothing and cleansing effect. Great for sensitive skin!

Drunk Elephant Pekee Bar and T.L.C Framboos Glycolic Night Serum

There won’t be any Essential Oils, Drying Alcohols, Silicones, Chemical Screens, Fragrance/Dyes and SLS in Drunk Elephant’s products. So yes, I love Drunk Elephant, especially these two.

UNBOUND LAB HIBISCUS SMOOTHER PAD

Instead of using AHA, this pad is using 88% Hibiscus (known as Nature’s Botox for its’ firming ability and natural source of AHA). So, it delivers the same benefits as chemical AHA without being harsh. I just love this new Clean Beauty brand from Korea. Even the packaging looks so clean!

PYUNKANG YUL ESSENCE TONER

Most of their products contain less than 10 ingredients. Very minimalistic, just like their packaging. This is one of their star product, which contains 91.3% of milk vetch root, a super ingredient in Korean and traditional Chinese medicine, full of skin-beneficial betaine and minerals. It’s fragrance free, dye free and irritant free.

SKIN1004 MADAGASCAR CENTELLA ASIATICA 100 AMPOULE

Main and only ingredient: Centella Asiatica Extract. It’s really soothing for sensitive skin and very affordable for a big bottle of ampoule.

PHOTOS: SHINTA ROSVITA

EUROPEAN DRUG-STORE SKINCARE PRODUCTS FOR FUNGAL-ACNE PRONE SKIN

Do I have other products than K-Beauty skincare? Of course, dearest. I do have a few of European drugstore brands in my collection. Disclaimer: unfortunately, most of them were purchased when I travelled abroad, because they don’t carry them where I live (Jakarta, Indonesia). Boohoo!!

EAU THERMALE AVÈNE or simply called Avène.

Thermal Spring Water

I guess every girl in this world must have this in their vanity. I use this before first toner, right after cleansing. Why? Because I have hard water in my home, so I need to neutralize my skin before everything else. It has ideal calcium/magnesium ratio to help improve skin texture. And I love the cooling & calming sensation on every spray it made. Super love!

3 in 1 Make-Up Remover

This is like a cleansing milk, non-rinse ones. Its’ milky texture will turn into fluid when rubbed. Please note that this has fragrance (but claimed to be tolerated by sensitive skin). It removed base makeup well, but not recommended to use to remove eye makeup.

Vichy Laboratories Mineral 89

I am sold by one of their claim that it acts as a protective shield against pollution. And after more research, I found out that this only has 11 ingredients (which is great for sensitive skin), with the highest concentration of their Thermal Mineralizing Water plus Hyaluronic Acid. Currently, I use this as daily moisturizer, by the way.

URIAGE EAU THERMALE or simply called Uriage

Creme Lavante

Another Thermal Water based product in my collection, this is a fragranced cleansing cream. Even though it’s fragranced, it’s safe for sensitive skin (proven by yours truly). Usually I use this in the morning after my acid night (which is only twice a week now). Mind you, this is soap-free and contains 1/3 nourishing milk. It won’t dry out skin but in the same time it didn’t leave any filmy residue after cleansing.

Hyseac SPF50+ Fluid

It’s specifically tailored for combination to oily skin, so yes on this point. It contains licorice extract which known for its’ ability to reduce excess sebum and prevent new blemishes. Another yes. It didn’t leave my skin look shiny or white or greyish or patchy.

Eucerin Ultra Sensitive Soothing Care

This is actually a day and night moisturizer, but I use this as a daily moisturizer for AM only. It’s preservative-free, paraben-free, paraffin-free, fragrance-free, alcohol-free, colorant-free and emulsifier-free. Since I’ve experienced redness here and there, especially after that over-exfoliating period, this really help to calm them down. It’s very light and contains SymSitive, their patented ingredient specially developed for hypersensitive skin. I do recommend this to strengthen skin barrier.

Biologique Recherche Lotion P50T

This specific type (they do have lots of type) of acid toner has been developed to suit all skin types from sensitive to dehydrated skin. I was too excited to try this hype acid toner, I applied this every night. Yes, I ended up having over-exfoliated skin. So, I do recommend to use this only once or twice a week (diluted on a cotton pad moistened with water). I don’t mind the vinegar-like smell, it reminds me of Apple Cider Vinegar.

LA ROCHE-POSAY

Thermal Spring Water

What is it with me and Thermal Water? Well, this is another favorite Thermal Water of mine. Naturally rich in selenium, well known as a powerful antioxidant, this face mist not only refreshes but also tones and rebalance skin. That’s why on my bad skin days, I will use this as a face toner to replace my regular toner.

Serozinc Face Mist

To beat the shine with only mist? Yup, this will do. This is actually a mattifying face mist, specially made for oily skin people. As the name applied, it does contain zinc sulfate to target signs of oily skin. No worries, it’s also clear like ordinary water mist, and I believe this is also a great toner if you’re sensitive to anything.

Bioderma Sensibio H2O

Need I say more? Tried many of cleansing water for makeup, from another brands, another countries, but keep on coming back to this. Even though this doesn’t dissolve eye makeup, but a great base makeup remover.

PHOTOS: SHINTA ROSVITA