How I Improved my Skincare Habits in 2017

This post is in partnership with Skincare by Alana.

At the start of the year, I made a commitment to make all kinds of improvements in my life. I wanted to take further steps towards improving my overall health through cleaner eating and regular exercise. And, since the skin is the largest organ, I wanted to improve my skincare habits as well.

Drinking more water? Check! Eating more high-water-content foods? Check! Stepping up my skincare routine? Working on it! I have troubled skin, and I’ve always been under the care of skincare professionals due to chronic problems like eczema and contact dermatitis. These two problems have been steering the care of my skin (and sometimes my life) for too long. Often my skincare goal was simply to find products that didn’t irritate my seriously sensitive skin. This year, I wanted more for my skin.

I’m fortunate to have e-met Alana Mitchell of Skincare by Alana, an online retailer and resource dedicated to improving the quality, appearance, and overall health of the skin. Alana, a licensed esthetician, offers over 300 top beauty products, including her own line, Alana Mitchell Skincare.

I was thrilled to learn that Skincare by Alana is an authorized retailer of Image Skincare products, a line I had been introduced to but had difficulty actually purchasing. You see, Image Skincare products are only sold by estheticians and sell out quickly due to popularity. Finding a trusted online retailer, then, is the best convenience ever.

In addition to my sensitive skin, my major concern is hyperpigmentation due to an unfortunate bout with adult chickenpox. That encounter left me scarred. And, as a brown gal, I’ve been terrified to try products and procedures that promise to address skin discoloration around my scars. Many of the proposed solutions potentially make the problem worse. Image Skincare’s Iluma collection came highly recommended for dark skin though. So, I tried it, and to my surprise, I saw improvements within days.

Here are the products that I’m currently using (all available at Skincare by Alana):

Image Skincare Iluma Intense Lightening Cleanser (daily)

Image Skincare Iluma Exfoliating Powder (2-3 times/week)

Image Skincare Iluma Brightening Creme (daily when not using serum)

Image Skincare Iluma Brightening Serum (daily)

Image Skincare Prevention + (daily)

I’ve been sampling the line since December, and I’ve been using this routine exclusively for a few weeks. The serum is currently my go-to moisturizer. This product contains 2% hydroquinone, so I’ll be using it for 3 months and then switching to the brightening creme. I’ve had my scars for several years, and hence kept my expectations low. But, here I am bare faced, y’all. The scars on my forehead are actually less visible. The scars along my jaw line are the worst, but have shown some small improvements already. I’ll spare you from seeing those. Ha.

The newest and most surprising addition to my routine is surely sunscreen. I’ve been told many times that I needed sunscreen to prevent the further darkening of my scars. But, I’ve always been terribly allergic to sunscreen, or so I thought. I’ve learned that I’m allergic to chemical sunblock (found in a lot of the popular products sold in-stores). Physical sunscreen, however, with no added fragrances and no other common irritants, doesn’t irritate my skin. So, the the Image Skincare Prevention +, a physical sunscreen, has become the final step in my daily skincare routine.

Skincare habits

I’ll plan to give an update in 3 months when I break from using the serum. I might even be able to show you the sides of my face then.

Overall, I’m really excited to be using a line that relies on botanical ingredients to address my biggest skin concerns. I’m even more thrilled to find Skincare by Alana,  a trusted and reliable online retailer of the products.


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  1. Tara
    March 16, 2017 / 11:15 am

    You have such a strong inner light, Psyche, and it really shines through in your photos! I need to take a page from your book and get committed to exercise, drinking more water and really taking care of my skin. It sounds like you have found a really great line to take care of your skin–hooray.

    • March 16, 2017 / 11:52 am

      Thank you so much for the kind words, Tara. I always appreciate hearing from you. It’s funny how just starting one thing inspired me to do more.