For the longest time, I’ve suffered with hyperpigmentation and scarring on my face. When I say I tried everything I could to get rid of it, I did. I went to brands such as Drunk Elephant, Dr Dennis Gross and Elemis and spent hundreds of pounds in products that just didn’t show me the results I wanted. Don’t get me wrong I actually love all the products I’ve tried from these brands and I will still use them but they weren’t tackling my problem areas.
The next step was to find a good dermatologist in my home city of Manchester. It didn’t take me long to find Dr Nicole Dermatology from the Lumiere Clinic and I was so excited. So excited that I immediately booked in for a consultation after looking at her credentials. Being a licensed doctor I knew I was in the safest hands possible and the reviews and testimonials spoke for themselves. Sadly I had to reschedule my appointment for a few months after I had initially booked in for but I was still beyond excited.
When I arrived to the clinic, they were very professional and inviting which was lovely as I was a little nervous about what to expect. I was given a few forms to fill out and then patiently waited to be called. It didn’t take long for me to be called into the consultation room and I was greeted by the one and only Dr Nicole. She was so lovely, very smiley and chatty and made me feel very comfortable and at ease. We began by discussing my problem areas, what I wanted as my end goal and what I do/have done to my skin previously. She had a quick little look at my skin up close and then proceeded to introduce me to the Obagi C-RX Starter System. This includes a C-cleansing gel with added vitamin C, C-clarifying serum with added vitamin C and 4% hydroquinone, C-exfoliating day lotion with added vitamin C, C-therapy night cream with added vitamins C & E and 4% hydroquinone and a broad spectrum SPF 50. This skin care routine is specifically formulated for normal to dry skin (which I have) with the 4% hydroquinone to reduce hyperpigmentation such as dark spots. It is important that if you want to try this out, you must only do so with the supervision of a licensed doctor as it contains some strong chemicals that can make things worse. As well as this kit, I was also recommended the Obagi 1.0 retinol cream. This is a slightly irritating but high concentrated retinal formula that minimises the appearance of fine line and wrinkles, improving the overall complexion, and smoothing the appearance of uneven skin texture for clearer looking skin.
As I began using it, both in the morning and evening, I noticed a tingling sensation on my face. It was a bad sensation, just like I knew that it was doing something! I still get it now which I’m very glad about. It’s great to know my skin isn’t used to the products and they’ve “stopped working”. I also began the retinol in the evenings but with a slow start, gradually building it up to every night. I soon noticed that my skin began to peel and it really wasn’t looking its best but I trusted the process. I began moisturising before apply my SPF in the morning and the last step in the evening. It didn’t matter to me that much that my skin was peeling as we were in lockdown so no-one’s going to see me anyway and when I did go out I always had a face mask on anyway. As I kept consistent with this, my skin had improved SO much, it began to clear up, become even and go back to its normal self in terms of dryness. The thick moisturiser really helped to hydrate my skin and help with the peeling. I still get the odd patches of dry/flaky/peeling skin on my face but this is all normal and moisturising day and night really helps.
I haven’t had any issues with any of the products in my kit and have loved using them all. As I am using such a high percentage retinol, it’s important that I keep consistent with my SPF, making sure that I’m using a SPF 50 or higher. The only thing about the SPF is that it creates a slight white cast on my face which means it takes me longer to rub into my skin, but it disappears after a few minutes so it isn’t a huge issue. Just one thing that can be improved for people of colour.
Now for the costs, the initial consultation cost me £175, the Obagi C-RX Starter System was £300, the Obagi 1.0 retinol cream was £50 and the Obagi hydrate facial moisturiser was £50. So for the first half of my treatment I have spent £575 which is considerably lower than what I was initially anticipating. It may seem like a lot of money to spend on skincare to some people and that’s fine but I’ve seen a drastic change in my skin already and I’m only 3 months in. There would have been no point in me going for my consultation, paying £175 to say no to what was recommended to me.
I have some before and after pictures that I thought I would share after a course of 3 months.
I’ve just bought another set of this as I ran out, it’s normal to go through 2 or 3 sets, but didn’t bother with the moisturiser as I feel like an average thick moisturiser can do the same job. I’m very excited for the next 3 months and see how much my skin texture and appearance improves. I’ll definitely keep you guys updated on this journey and discuss it in depth on my final blogpost 💕
See you in 3 months,