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xoNecole Readers Share How They Get Rid Of Dark Spots

Beauty & Fashion

Women are donning beat faces and flawless skin now more than ever. In fact, just about every other video on Instagram is a makeup tutorial.


But just like weaves, we have to make sure that what's underneath the extensions of our beauty is carefully maintained as well. That made us wonder how women are keeping their skin tight and right. One of the biggest culprits that adds years to your appearance is dark spots. While they can be harmless, the presence of hyperpigmentation can decrease your self-esteem and make you extremely self-conscious.

Here at xoNecole, we asked some of our readers to let us in on the ways they tackle dark spots and achieve glowing, radiant skin. Here's what they had to say:

Shanelle

What She Does:

Freelance Writer

How She Gets Rid of Dark Spots:

"The number one thing that has UNDOUBTEDLY helped with my dark spots is Vitamin C serum. It's a natural brightener and it helps your skin glow from the inside out. I have sensitive/combination skin so I was a bit apprehensive about putting an oil like this on my face, but I'm so happy I did! I use that twice a day, morning and night, and it's definitely a MUST HAVE in my skincare routine."

The Products She Swears By:

"A product I can't live without would be either the Vitamin C serum or my Noxzema Ultimate Clear Anti-Blemish Pads. The pads are made with salicylic acid, which sounds harsh, but it works like an astringent. In addition to blocking blemishes from forming, they also help to reduce scarring from previous ones. Without those two, my skin would NOT look as cohesive as it does."

Mel

What She Does:

Business Owner, RN, CMSRN, Professional Makeup Artist

How She Gets Rid of Dark Spots:

For Mild - Acne Scarring

"I use a salicylic-based skincare line, Clinique, to prevent more breakouts. In a nutshell, salicylic acid is a naturally occurring alpha hydroxy acid family derived from willow bark (the same place we get aspirin). Salicylic acid is both highly keratolytic and comedolytic, which means it not only dissolves dead skin cells on the surface of the skin, but it's also able to get down into the pore, dissolve the oil and break apart the debris inside that commonly leads to acne. Additionally, it can correct dark spots without irritating your skin because it's derived from willow bark, which has some topical anti-inflammatory benefits."

Olamide

What She Does:

PR Consultant/Brand Strategist/Multi Media Journo

How She Gets Rid of Dark Spots:

Morning Routine

"I battled with acne and as a result dark spots for years, but after reading up on maintaining a flawless skin and getting to understand my skin, I stuck to a routine that has worked for me till date. My routine is pretty simple enough for every day and doesn't take my time. I start with wiping excess oil with unscented wipes, then I go on to wash my face with a gentle wash from Beauty Formula when taking a bath. Afterwards, I leave my face to air dry and then use my ever-trusted Palmers Skin Success Deep Cleansing Astringent (I've used this for over 15 years!), which is followed by Palmer's Skin Success Toner. Then, I moisturize."

Nighttime Routine

"My night routine is also pretty similar, from wiping my makeup to cleansing, toning, and using a green tea serum that works on my skin overnight. I exfoliate once a week using a sugar scrub from Arami Essentials. I interchange this with my electric facial brush that also works for exfoliating and deep cleansing so my skin is clean and clear. I also drink lots of water and make sure I never touch my face. I wash my makeup applicators often and sometimes I go makeup-free, leaving my skin to breath. I never pop pimples, I make sure to apply topical cream to them till they dry off and the scar slowly fade out."

Naomi

What She Does:

Purpose & Soul Creator of @yourstrulyclub & @inspofinds/Host of Yours Truly Podcast Design + Direction

How She Gets Rid of Dark Spots:

Skincare Journey

"I normally have very good skin and then around October 2017, I suddenly had constant breakouts for a good couple of months, which led to, of course, picking and leaving me with quite a lot of scarring around my cheeks. My main problem was the spots not clearing up at first as I couldn't fix the dark spots if I was still getting acne. I tried so many products and even the famous DuDu black soap, but I have now learned that too much irritation to the skin can cause more breakouts. I have discovered that I have highly sensitive skin and combination skin. I think learning what skin you have is so important to know what products work well for you. For instance, at night I use an oil and I tried coconut oil, which is highly popular but it was too much for my skin and clogged my pores but Vitamin E oil isn't as heavy and contains antioxidants to help acne and smooth uneven tones."

Dietary Restrictions

One big part of my routine now is no dairy. I realized that a lot of my skin problems came from the dairy and after taking it out I no longer have breakouts and my eczema is also clearing up. It's not just about what you put on your skin but what you feed your body too and, that said, I also drink a minimum of 1.5L of water. It's so easy to say, water doesn't do anything when you drink a lot, but a friend reminded me that imagine your skin if you didn't drink anything!"

Skincare Routine

"I think everyone needs to be 100% committed to a morning and night routine to transform and maintain good skin."

"Every morning, I wash my face with Shea Moisture African black soap, which unlike the Dudu African soap, is very nourishing. I don't feel like my face has been stripped away. I then follow up with Body Shop Aloe Toner. I then follow the Body Shop Vitamin C moisture serum, which honestly, this range has transformed my skin. The only difference is my night routine. I change my moisturizer for pure Vitamin E oil and smooth a few drops onto my skin. For around six weeks, I did this every night but now I do this twice a week as it is starting to get warmer in the UK."

The Product She Swears By:

"Now the magic product I just LOVE is the Body Shop Vitamin C Glow Revealing Liquid Peel. It has honestly transformed my skin. I use it twice a week and it subtly lifts a layer of my dead skin off and you feel it doing so! Because I use this twice a week, it lifts the dead skin sitting on my dark spots allowing them to fade."

Do you have any other natural ways to remove dark spots? Let us know in the comments!

Featured image by Getty Images

ACLU By ACLUSponsored

Over the past four years, we grew accustomed to a regular barrage of blatant, segregationist-style racism from the White House. Donald Trump tweeted that “the Squad," four Democratic Congresswomen who are Black, Latinx, and South Asian, should “go back" to the “corrupt" countries they came from; that same year, he called Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas," mocking her belief that she might be descended from Native American ancestors.

But as outrageous as the racist comments Trump regularly spewed were, the racially unjust governmental actions his administration took and, in the case of COVID-19, didn't take, impacted millions more — especially Black and Brown people.

To begin to heal and move toward real racial justice, we must address not only the harms of the past four years, but also the harms tracing back to this country's origins. Racism has played an active role in the creation of our systems of education, health care, ownership, and employment, and virtually every other facet of life since this nation's founding.

Our history has shown us that it's not enough to take racist policies off the books if we are going to achieve true justice. Those past policies have structured our society and created deeply-rooted patterns and practices that can only be disrupted and reformed with new policies of similar strength and efficacy. In short, a systemic problem requires a systemic solution. To combat systemic racism, we must pursue systemic equality.

What is Systemic Racism?

A system is a collection of elements that are organized for a common purpose. Racism in America is a system that combines economic, political, and social components. That system specifically disempowers and disenfranchises Black people, while maintaining and expanding implicit and explicit advantages for white people, leading to better opportunities in jobs, education, and housing, and discrimination in the criminal legal system. For example, the country's voting systems empower white voters at the expense of voters of color, resulting in an unequal system of governance in which those communities have little voice and representation, even in policies that directly impact them.

Systemic Equality is a Systemic Solution

In the years ahead, the ACLU will pursue administrative and legislative campaigns targeting the Biden-Harris administration and Congress. We will leverage legal advocacy to dismantle systemic barriers, and will work with our affiliates to change policies nearer to the communities most harmed by these legacies. The goal is to build a nation where every person can achieve their highest potential, unhampered by structural and institutional racism.

To begin, in 2021, we believe the Biden administration and Congress should take the following crucial steps to advance systemic equality:

Voting Rights

The administration must issue an executive order creating a Justice Department lead staff position on voting rights violations in every U.S. Attorney office. We are seeing a flood of unlawful restrictions on voting across the country, and at every level of state and local government. This nationwide problem requires nationwide investigatory and enforcement resources. Even if it requires new training and approval protocols, a new voting rights enforcement program with the participation of all 93 U.S. Attorney offices is the best way to help ensure nationwide enforcement of voting rights laws.

These assistant U.S. attorneys should begin by ensuring that every American in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons who is eligible to vote can vote, and monitor the Census and redistricting process to fight the dilution of voting power in communities of color.

We are also calling on Congress to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to finally create a fair and equal national voting system, the cause for which John Lewis devoted his life.

Student Debt

Black borrowers pay more than other students for the same degrees, and graduate with an average of $7,400 more in debt than their white peers. In the years following graduation, the debt gap more than triples. Nearly half of Black borrowers will default within 12 years. In other words, for Black Americans, the American dream costs more. Last week, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, along with House Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Maxine Waters, and others, called on President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.

We couldn't agree more. By forgiving $50,000 of student debt, President Biden can unleash pent up economic potential in Black communities, while relieving them of a burden that forestalls so many hopes and dreams. Black women in particular will benefit from this executive action, as they are proportionately the most indebted group of all Americans.

Postal Banking

In both low and high income majority-Black communities, traditional bank branches are 50 percent more likely to close than in white communities. The result is that nearly 50 percent of Black Americans are unbanked or underbanked, and many pay more than $2,000 in fees associated with subprime financial institutions. Over their lifetime, those fees can add up to as much as two years of annual income for the average Black family.

The U.S. Postal Service can and should meet this crisis by providing competitive, low-cost financial services to help advance economic equality. We call on President Biden to appoint new members to the Postal Board of Governors so that the Post Office can do the work of providing essential services to every American.

Fair Housing

Across the country, millions of people are living in communities of concentrated poverty, including 26 percent of all Black children. The Biden administration should again implement the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, which required localities that receive federal funds for housing to investigate and address barriers to fair housing and patterns or practices that promote bias. In 1980, the average Black person lived in a neighborhood that was 62 percent Black and 31 percent white. By 2010, the average Black person's neighborhood was 48 percent Black and 34 percent white. Reinstating the Obama-era Fair Housing Rule will combat this ongoing segregation and set us on a path to true integration.

Congress should also pass the American Housing and Economic Mobility Act, or a similar measure, to finally redress the legacy of redlining and break down the walls of segregation once and for all.

Broadband Access

To realize broadband's potential to benefit our democracy and connect us to one another, all people in the United States must have equal access and broadband must be made affordable for the most vulnerable. Yet today, 15 percent of American households with school-age children do not have subscriptions to any form of broadband, including one-quarter of Black households (an additional 23 percent of African Americans are “smartphone-only" internet users, meaning they lack traditional home broadband service but do own a smartphone, which is insufficient to attend class, do homework, or apply for a job). The Biden administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Congress must develop and implement plans to increase funding for broadband to expand universal access.

Enhanced, Refundable Child Tax Credits

The United States faces a crisis of child poverty. Seventeen percent of all American children are impoverished — a rate higher than not just peer nations like Canada and the U.K., but Mexico and Russia as well. Currently, more than 50 percent of Black and Latinx children in the U.S. do not qualify for the full benefit, compared to 23 percent of white children, and nearly one in five Black children do not receive any credit at all.

To combat this crisis, President Biden and Congress should enhance the child tax credit and make it fully refundable. If we enhance the child tax credit, we can cut child poverty by 40 percent and instantly lift over 50 percent of Black children out of poverty.

Reparations

We cannot repair harms that we have not fully diagnosed. We must commit to a thorough examination of the impact of the legacy of chattel slavery on racial inequality today. In 2021, Congress must pass H.R. 40, which would establish a commission to study reparations and make recommendations for Black Americans.

The Long View

For the past century, the ACLU has fought for racial justice in legislatures and in courts, including through several landmark Supreme Court cases. While the court has not always ruled in favor of racial justice, incremental wins throughout history have helped to chip away at different forms of racism such as school segregation ( Brown v. Board), racial bias in the criminal legal system (Powell v. Alabama, i.e. the Scottsboro Boys), and marriage inequality (Loving v. Virginia). While these landmark victories initiated necessary reforms, they were only a starting point.

Systemic racism continues to pervade the lives of Black people through voter suppression, lack of financial services, housing discrimination, and other areas. More than anything, doing this work has taught the ACLU that we must fight on every front in order to overcome our country's legacies of racism. That is what our Systemic Equality agenda is all about.

In the weeks ahead, we will both expand on our views of why these campaigns are crucial to systemic equality and signal the path this country must take. We will also dive into our work to build organizing, advocacy, and legal power in the South — a region with a unique history of racial oppression and violence alongside a rich history of antiracist organizing and advocacy. We are committed to four principles throughout this campaign: reconciliation, access, prosperity, and empowerment. We hope that our actions can meet our ambition to, as Dr. King said, lead this nation to live out the true meaning of its creed.

What you can do:
Take the pledge: Systemic Equality Agenda
Sign up

Featured image by Shutterstock

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