Life

5 Canadian influencers share their skin issues and how they control them (without filter)

Their go-to products and practices for that healthy insta glow.

Their go-to products and practices for that healthy insta glow

When you have skin issues it always seems like everyone else has better skin than you do. Especially when you scroll through the filtered world of social media. You're constantly bombarded by glossy, blemish-free skin.

Although things may seem near perfect, the fact is many social media influencers struggle with various skin woes. We spoke to five Canadian influencers about their skin stories. They shared their favourite products and other skincare secrets for healthy, gram-ready skin.

So whether you're looking to get a handle on your dry skin or perhaps dark circles under your eyes, here's how these influencer it gals deal with their skin problems and how you can too.

Dominique Baker - @dominique.baker

Dominique Baker is a beauty, fashion and lifestyle blogger and YouTuber based in Ottawa.

(Credit: Dominique Baker)

Skin issue: "My major skincare issue right now is adult acne. I have tried everything from expensive creams to Accutane in an attempt to control it." Products that help: "I did two rounds of Accutane during the months leading up to my wedding. It basically cured my acne, but was very harsh. Since then, I get occasional flare-ups, but the acne leaves scarring that takes months to heal. A few months ago, I discovered Elta MD Clear, a niacinamide-based face cream that is highly effective at controlling my acne and reducing oiliness. I would recommend it to anyone suffering from acne, but if you have severe acne, consult your dermatologist first before trying it out."

*Bonus* skincare tip: "I always use sunscreen! I'm very fortunate to have great skin, but black people are prone to sagging due to sun damage. I want to ward that off for as long as possible! I also use SkinMedica Gel Cleanser which is great at removing makeup, including stubborn eye makeup. Every couple of months, I'll treat myself to a hydrafacial which purifies skin and leaves you looking glowy and refreshed. It's also the most relaxing and lovely experience!"

Sandy Gill - @thesandylion

Sandy Gill is an educator, creative consultant and style influencer.

(Credit: Pukhraj Bassan)

Skin issue:

"My biggest skin care concern has always been the dark circles around my eyes. It is hereditary, but it also gets worse depending on my diet and how much sleep I've had. It's really the only reason I wear makeup."

Products that help:

"In the past year I really started to take it more seriously; trying various products to help with the dark circles. Last summer I started using a combination of Neostrata's Intensive Eye Therapy and Kiehl's Eye Fuel eye cream. That combination has been working really well for me. I use the Neostrata cream at nighttime. Then I use the Kiehl's cream in the morning, mainly because it's easier to apply makeup on top of the Kiehl's eye cream. However I'd love in the future to only use the Neostrata cream because my skin overall feels much better with it. In the winter, keeping my skin moisturized is an issue for me, I find the Neostrata Moisture Infusion face cream is good for that. It's super hydrating."

*Bonus* skincare tip:

"I also rub almond oil on my dark circles twice a week or so. It helps as well but I try not to put too much, because it might cause a breakout. I also use the Mario Badescu Facial Spray throughout the day. It keeps my face hydrated, keeps my makeup fresh and glowy. I really love it. I am however trying not to wear as much makeup these days. By focusing more on skincare recently, it has helped me to be more confident in my own skin. My circles have lessened and skin is looking better overall."

Sydney Hoffman - @syd.hoff

Sydney Hoffman is a Toronto based lifestyle blogger.

(Credit Tracey Hoffman )

Skin issue:

"I have dry and sensitive skin."

Products that help:

"I'm always trying to pile on the moisturizers thinking it will help. Some do, but believe it or not an exfoliating toner called Lotion P50T from Biologique Recherche was the answer to my problems. Having sensitive skin, I was always terrified of toners and never tried them because I always thought they were going to destroy my skin. This one is a miracle worker. It moisturizes, gently exfoliates, minimizes pores and evens out my skin tone. You only need to use it maybe 4-5 times a week! If I forget to use it one week I instantly notice a difference, because my skin looks dull and rough. Everyone needs to try this product."

*Bonus* skincare tip:

"The two things I ALWAYS say to everyone for clear, hydrated skin is never go to bed wearing makeup. I always wash my face before I go to bed. I love Bioderma Micellar cleansing water (sensitive.) I use this to remove my makeup and use it as a cleanser as well. My number two is water, water and more water. I drink so much water and I truly believe it shows in my skin. Whenever I don't get enough water one day I wake up the next day looking dull. These are simple things and very crucial to clear skin in my opinion."

Cory Lee - @coryleemusic

Cory Lee is a juno nominated singer, actress and blogger based in Toronto.

Skin issue:

"I have sensitive, ageing, acne prone skin" Products that help: "My current go to brands are Dermalogica, The Ordinary, Philosophy and Omorovicza. In particular I like the following."

"I use the Demalogica Special cleansing gel. It's a heavy duty cleanser that is gentle and perfect for oily and combo skin. I also love the Demalogica Precleanse. I use it before washing my face especially if I'm wearing any makeup. Then there is The Ordinary Glycolic Acid Toning solution. It really exfoliates my skin and leaves it feeling super clean. The Ordinary Niacinamide and Zinc serum is a gamechanger product for me. It helps fight my blemishes, oil and congestion. Perfect for my adult acne since it doesn't dry out my skin. I use Philosophy's renewed hope In a jar as I think it's the perfect lightweight moisturizer."

"Another game changer product for me is Philosophy's ultimate miracle worker retinol pads. I use this nightly, it reduces fine lines, gives me a glow and helps fight my breakouts. I also love putting on the Omorovicza Budapest Miracle Facial Oil at night. It really has made a difference in my fine lines and doesn't make me breakout more. For a mask I use the GlamGlow YOUTHMUD Tingleexfoliate treatment. It honestly feels like microdermabrasion and I am here for it. It is the best exfoliation you can get, but it's not for the faint of heart."

*Bonus* skincare tip: "I always wash my face morning and night. Exercise, sleep, water and proper skin care is always the best routine for my skin. I also try to watch the alcohol."

Amy Patel - @lesbest

Amy Patel is an artist, stylist and influencer

(Credit: Erin Leydon)

Skin issue:

"Eczema, dermatitis and ageing skin."

Products that help:

"I'm very regimented in my routine. I do a lot of research, it's not just a fad for me. So, after testing I realized I had a really bad form of Eczema. Not only skin rashes but my eyes would get swollen like I had a foodborne allergy. I would also get pretty hivey in general.

One of my favourite products right now is the eczema balm from Province Apothecary. It's a thick white cream and the main medical ingredients are colloidal oatmeal and zinc. I've been putting that on my eyes, neck and chest. I make a nighttime mask with it."

"I also use The Ordinary's 100% Organic Virgin Sea-Buckthorn Fruit Oil. Sea-Buckthorn is high in vitamin E and C. Not only does it help with wrinkles, fine lines etc., but it also helps with inflammation. Good for burns, cuts, wounds. I use around my eyes. It's good for when my skin is out of a dry state and is healing. It is yellow like turmeric, so I use a hypoallergenic towel on top of my pillow in the event of any stains.

"Again I use The Ordinary's 100% Organic Cold-Pressed Rosehip Oil in the day. Rosehip has fatty acids and vitamin A. It also helps promote skin regeneration. I put this on early in the morning. I stay away from vitamin C or any acids so as not to aggravate my face. I've been obsessed with Super Goop Unseen Sunscreen. I use that on top of the oil with minimal makeup. I've also been using the Omorovicza face spray."

"In terms of body skin care as a result of the eczema I used almond sweet oil. For a face wash, I use Consonant's foaming face wash, because it's 1000% natural. With my lips, I'm obsessed with La Niege's lip sleeping mask. I do run in all seasons and it's important to protect my lips. I love Sun Bum lip balm in the coconut scent."

*Bonus* skincare tip:

"I truly believe food plays a huge part in beautiful skin. I started a candida diet last April as a way to reset my gut and it has helped a lot. Additionally I take collagen everyday along with a vitamin C spray as that helps with absorption. A collagen supplement is great for skin, eyes and joints. I take that along with zinc (combined with a fat like Omega fish oil and vitamin D, again for proper absorption). One of my favourite things to consume is bone broth (chicken, fish, beef or veggie) it has lots of benefits including anti-inflammatory properties. To round it out I regularly drink Hibiscus tea. It helps to purify my skin and encourage cell turnover. I also add acai powder to water as it is high in amino acids and antioxidants and helps to plump my skin."


Nneka Elliott (@nnekaelliott) is a lifestyle blogger, host and actor. She shares her adventures with fashion and beauty in her pursuit of a gutsy life. nnekaelliott.com

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