There’s a good reason why this review took so long, I promise. It’s crazy, but I’ll get to it at the end of this review. Remember back in March, I told you guys about these skin care products for problem skin that I got from Perfect Trust Cosmetics? Super super thoughtful of them to send me these products, because as you probably know, ya girl has been battling adult acne for some years now.
I was sent the Facial Scrub/Wash, Facial Mask and Toner from the Shea Moisture African Black Soap Problem Skin line, as well as the Spot Correcting Moisturiser from the Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus line.
In this post, I shared my Shea Moisture skincare regimen, that is, how I used each product. Now, I’m back to tell you how it all worked out for me. You know we like to go deep with our product reviews and we are talking about 4 here, so buckle up!
Because this is a discussion about 4 products, let me just refer you to the official Shea Moisture website to read the product descriptions, and ingredient lists for each one. I used the products together, as a system. While I’m going to comment on how each one looked and felt, this review is really about how they worked TOGETHER. Okay? Okay!
Here’s how it’s going to go:
- Links to the Products
- First Impressions
- Notes on the Individual Products
- My Results After Using All 4 Products Together For 3 Months Consistently
- Sand Sand in My Garri
1. Links to Products under Review
2. First Impressions
Have you ever tried looking at the list of most skincare products in the supermarket or pharmacy? I am legit always so concerned because the lists are more complicated than my shampoo! Products that I am meant to put on my already stressed face!
My first impression about these guys was how simple the ingredients are, compared to other products I have seen, and used. The Toner has the cleanest list, followed by the Spot Correcting Moisturiser. The other two are good too. Ingredients wise, Shea Moisture represented like they always do.
I like how the products are packaged. The Scrub is perfect in the tube, and having a spray cap on the Toner is such a good idea! It’s the first toner I’ve ever used that comes with a spray cap, so I can tell you it is much more efficient for clumsy pants like me, than the regular ones you just “pour”. The Spot Correcting Moisturiser smells so sweet, and not in an overpowering way. The little glass tub it came in made me feel all grown up! (I really should up my skincare game, babes are getting old!)
The Problem Skin products (Toner, Wash & Mask) kinda smell like Shea Moisture’s other hair products and bath products in the African Black Soap line, like this one here. It’s a light, pleasant smell.
3. Notes About the Individual Products
TONER: I love that the Toner is really gentle. I have oily skin, and so far, in my skincare experiments, Toners haven’t been my best friends. Apart from natural remedies like diluted ACV, and Thayer’s Rose Water and Glycerine Toner, the regular chemical stuff is too harsh for me. They are okay for application on a stubborn zit but too drying for my whole face, which causes my skin to overproduce oil. Now, the crazy thing about certain toners that I will not name being harsh on zits is that, that is not the primary work of a Toner!
A Toner is meant to restore the pH balance of your skin after it has been somewhat upset by the use of a Cleanser. I’ve been forced to learn more about my skin than I was interested in, honestly. So, this toner is very very gentle. It claims to reduce pores (I have visible pores and I can’t say it did this for me) but it definitely helped reduce shine. Even with the moisturiser, my face just wasn’t as oily as usual.
MOISTURISER: After the Toner, my favourite product is the Spot Correcting Moisturiser. I love it so. I mean, all the products worked together for good, but beyond the acne stopping, the evidence of acne cleared too! I think the Moisturiser had a heavy hand in this. Don’t just take my word for it. Nappily Nigerian Girl said her sister used it on a scar on her leg and it cleared!
SCRUB: I used the scrub about two times a week. It has tiny “beads” but these aren’t, to the best of my knowledge, the ones that are bad for the environment. When you first apply it, it looks like soap. I massage it into my skin in a circular motion until it is totally absorbed. The tiny “beads” small as they are, may not wow you, or have you feeling like wow, I just exfoliated! However, I did notice that after rinsing my face, sometimes, I would have little whiteheads poking out of the surface, so I could easily remove them.
MASK: I used the mask once a week, and I still use it now. After use, it has my face feeling “really washed”, like my iniquities have been lifted! HOWEVER, do not get carried away by this! The mask says to apply to CLEAN skin, and they mean it. It is NO substitute for a cleanser/ wash. The one time I thought I could use this as a one-step product to multi-task, I saw a lot of dirt on my cotton pad while applying the Toner after. Really weird, but I am now properly guided.
Now that my preamble is over, let’s get to the question you want answered:
4. Did these Shea Moisture Products Fix My Problem Skin, Tho?
I used all 4 products consistently through March, April and May. Six weeks in, my colleagues were commenting about how much my face had improved. I wear makeup to the office like 1 out of 8 times, so to be honest, while they were really good judges of my progress, I was a little embarrassed wondering how bad my face looked before. 2 people in particular wanted to know the products I was using, and I happily referred them to my source: Perfect Trust.
By the end of May (that is, after 3 months) my face was looking the best it had in a long, long time. No zit in sight, and a lot of my scarring was gone! Not only was the scarring gone, I started to realise how uneven my face had been before. All that hyper pigmentation from a few years of acne, with some of them super dark because of zits recurring in the same spot, had cast some kind of shadow on my face. I’m not trying to be dramatic lol if you’ve ever struggled with acne, or if you pay attention to these things, you know what I’m talking about.
My skin was glowing, you guys! Glowing in general and most of my scarring was gone! I even stunted small on Instagram! I’m not kidding.
This is my default face. I promise you, I wasn't angry in this photo 😂 Can you see the glow though? ✨✨✨ No powder, no foundation. Shout out to @perfectrustcosmetics & @sheamoisture for helping me find products that ACTUALLY help with acne and scarring. I'll be blogging my full review soon but I already shared the products and how I use them on the blog. See link in bio xx #thekinkandi #acne #scarring
In uni, I used to have a recurring hormonal zit on the side of my nose. Back then, my friends used to joke that it as like a nose ring lol! Well well. Nose ring who? It is GONE. I give the Spot Correcting Moisturiser most of the credit for this.
Now, here’s the thing about procrastination. Like a good blogger, I should have been photographing my face every day, but life did not let me observe blogging best practices. I kept enjoying my new face, which I thought was always going to be here until…
Sand Sand for My Garri (If you’re not Nigerian, read as “a spanner in the works”)
June 9. I remember this day oh. The day my enemies attacked me for real.
Just kidding, I don’t believe in enemies!
I woke up that morning and as I did my face routine, I felt some knobby things under the surface of my skin. Not out there, but bubbling under. By June 10, the day of my birthday shoot, they were really threatening my peace. A week later, I had a colony of zits on my cheek, and they hurt! Soon enough, they started to spread fast. It was like my whole face from the cheeks down to my chin and jaw area. The way it happened, I was convinced that I was experiencing a severe reaction to something, but I didn’t know what. It didn’t help that I went out of Lagos on that day for a party. The last time I had a severe breakout like this was in December, right after I returned from my work retreat in Epe.
I was going to post my review in June after 3 months of use, but after I started breaking out again, I decided I didn’t want to write about my skin until it was gone, or until I had a better understanding of why I was breaking out.
Between June and now, I’ve tried 2 topical treatments, been on a 45 day prescription, and seen a dermatologist. Actually, that should have been 2 dermatologists but the Nigerian public healthcare system is a mess and my appointment with the second one didn’t come to pass.
Including these details in my review is not to say that these products are bad. AT ALL. They were great. Really. I truly recommend, Even, see these phone pictures from June 10 when the breakout was still loading. You can see zits on my cheek, but also see how clear the rest of my face is. This acne thing… power pass power and we always want you guys to get the full picture.
Most people never get to experience acne as something more than a minor irritation that happens sometimes. If you are one, lucky you. I have been dealing with breakouts off and on for years, but my last 2 were severe, ad unlike anything I had ever experienced. At that point, you should seek professional help, like I did. Just like most hair care products are made for people with normal porosity, most skin care products that are available at supermarkets and drugstores, are NOT treatments. They can be helpful, but aren’t strong enough to fight the real issues that require treatment! Acne is DEEP, you guys.
These products are not out here claiming to be cures. For what they are, they are pretty good. If you have mild acne and your skin care budget can only accommodate drugstore products, I really encourage you to try them before you invest in Clinique or Clarins or any of them fancy stuff. I’d really encourage you to try these instead of say, Neutrogena or Clean & Clear. It’s simpler, cleaner beauty.
I feel like I should follow this post up with an update on how I’ve been coping since I stopped using this regimen. I had to stop using the scrub because my face was much too irritated for even the gentlest scrubs. My dermatologist advised me to stop using the Moisturiser (and really, all face products with natural oils and butters) and switch to an oil free moisturiser instead, which I have. I still use the Facial Mask every week. I recently ran out of the Toner, which I will replace.
If you made it to the end of this post, you’re a real champ! Thank you! Now, over to you. Have you ever tried any of these products or any of Shea Moisture’s other skincare lines? How was your experience? Let me know in the comments! Do you have any questions I haven’t addressed? Are you inspired to give the products a shot because of this review? What other clean(er) beauty brands have you discovered that work well for you? Sharing is caring!
Also, because this has been an awfully long post (my excuse: 4 products!), would you have preferred to watch a 4 minute video instead of having to read so much? Please let me know what you think!
Till next time,