The Skincare Essentials For Dark Skin Tones

Darker skin may be slower to age and less likely to burn, but it’s also more prone to hyperpigmentation: the overproduction of melanin that can result in a dull, uneven tone and post-blemish dark spots. Keep your complexion looking its best by turning to exfoliating acids to fight discoloration, vitamin C to give extra glow and an SPF that ensures your investment pays off.


Dr Barbara Sturm

Darker Skin Tones Foam Cleanser, N/A

German aesthetics doctor Barbara Sturm is one of the most respected names in skincare, and her high-performing, science-backed products are beloved by celebrities. This powder-to-foam cleanser, which belongs to her Darker Skin Tones line, contains vitamin C and doubles as a light enzyme peel – perfect for nixing surface-level pigmentation. Use in lieu of your day-to-day cleanser two to three times a week (or daily if you have oily skin).



Super Soin Solaire Facial Youth Protector SPF30, N/A

Even for those with very dark skin, daily use of an SPF is non-negotiable – especially if you’re making regular use of acids. Fortunately, sun-care experts Sisley-Paris have created the most luxurious sunscreen you’ll find – a divinely scented, non-greasy formula that disappears into the skin like a moisturiser (thanks to glycerin and shea butter) and, most importantly, leaves no chalky blue cast.


The Ordinary

Ascorbic Acid 8% + Alpha Arbutin 2%, $10.00

The Ordinary boasts a selection of serums that are rich in glow-giving, free-radical-fighting vitamin C, but this ‘water-free’ solution (which feels a little like an oil) is our go-to for achieving a more even skin tone. That’s thanks to the added extra of alpha arbutin, which slows down melanin production and brightens the complexion. Simple yet effective.


Paula's Choice

Clinical Niacinamide 20% Treatment, N/A

Niacinamide is one of the buzziest ingredients in skincare for good reason: it’s an all-rounder, tackling enlarged pores, fine lines and dark spots all in one. This Paula’s Choice treatment is supercharged with the stuff – apply daily, after cleansing and before moisturiser, for best results.


Drunk Elephant

C-Firma Day Serum, N/A

This hard-working antioxidant serum from Drunk Elephant not only delivers a shot of brightness to the skin with a healthy dose of vitamin C – it also contains peptides for firming, pomegranate and pumpkin extract for exfoliation, and vitamin E for hydration. Follow up with an SPF of 30 or more.


Kate Somerville

Exfolikate Intensive Exfoliating Treatment, $25.00

Unlock glowing skin in a flash with LA facialist Kate Somerville’s two-minute treatment (one of the brand’s bestsellers). A super-fine exfoliant made with lactic and salicylic acid, it works by turning over the uppermost skin cells to reveal a brighter, smoother complexion underneath – and is designed for once or twice-a-week use. Super-sensitive types should steer clear – this is one for acid veterans.

Posted: Sunday, 18 July 2021

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