Check out more of the best drugstore products for dry skin.
3. What are the best treatments for dark spots?
Hyperpigmentation, the blanket term for discoloration on the skin, is a fairly universal skin issue. While hyperpigmentation can take many forms and vary from person to person, one of the most common types of discoloration is known as dark spots.
Dark spots, which are caused by melanocytes (cells responsible for skin’s color) depositing excess pigment into deeper levels of the skin, are often difficult to treat. “In general, hyperpigmentation is tough to treat and a chronic condition,” New York City-based board-certified dermatologist Dhaval Bhanusali previously told Allure.
But just because it’s troublesome to fade hyperpigmentation caused by previous breakouts, sun damage, or hormonal changes, that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to treat dark spots. That said, dermatologists typically recommend a cocktail of remedies, including topical treatments (both over-the-counter and prescription) formulated with brightening ingredients, such as vitamin C, licorice root, and kojic acid, as well as laser treatments, which, together, help diminish discoloration over time.
See our comprehensive lists of dark spot-fading serums and brightening vitamin C options to try.
4. I’m dealing with acne. Help!
Allow us to preface this by saying: you’re not alone. In fact, given the current state of our country (and the world), feeling stress — and then watching it manifest on your face in the form of stress acne — is almost inevitable. “The relationship between psychological stress and the physical appearance of skin is affected by complex interactions across the body,” Evan Rieder, a board-certified physician who specializes in both psychiatry and dermatology in New York City, previously told Allure. “Stress can cause many skin conditions to worsen.”
Good news, though: Just like all other breakouts, stress acne be treated and prevented. The first step in taming flare-ups is to get some sleep and maintain a sense of normalcy via routine, say experts. “Keeping routines can be profoundly helpful in times of unprecedented stress and uncertainty,” Rieder said. “When we have seemingly lost control of [many of] the elements that give us peace, including our occupations, finances, and health, normalcy in any sense is welcome [and] things that we take for granted and often do automatically are important to maintain.”
Of course, on the topical side, there’s also spot treatments. Shari Marchbein, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City, recommends looking for creams that contain ingredients that fight acne-causing bacteria, such as salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, and retinol. We like the Clean & Clear Advantage Spot Treatment, which is made with two percent salicylic acid. And for any lingering scars or marks once the blemish clears, try one of these dermatologist-approved acne scar treatments.
Learn more about why stress causes acne and how to treat it.
5. Is there any way to get rid of the dark circles under my eyes?
Reader, we have some news you probably weren’t expecting to hear: Unfortunately, while there are many products to help soothe and de-puff sleepy undereyes (i.e. eye cream), for some, dark circles are hereditary. “The undereye area is one of the thinner areas and is easily neglected in basic skin care,” Paul Jarrod Frank, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City, previously told Allure. “There is a strong genetic component to dark circles, which is out of people’s control.”