Michelle Obama is undeniably having a moment since leaving her post as FLOTUS, especially with the publishing of her memoir Becoming. The former first lady had been busy going on her book tour and attending speaking events. Such a busy travel schedule can take a toll on one’s skin, of course, but you wouldn’t know it with Mrs. Obama—Michelle’s skin is more glowing than ever.
Her secret? She has been working with skincare expert Jennifer Brodeur (of the JB Skin Guru line). One of their biggest priorities was addressing hyperpigmentation to achieve a more even skin tone. Hyperpigmentation can be caused for a variety of reasons, including sun damage, the natural aging process, genetics, pregnancy, eczema, and skin injuries (including acne). Individuals with darker skin tones are sometimes more prone to experiencing hyperpigmentation.
Often, exfoliating acids, dermabrasion, and lasers are among the recommended treatments for improving skin tone, but Brodeur prefers a gentler approach: ”I’m not a big believer in peels or exfoliation,” she shared with Refinery29.
Brodeur designed an effective, sustainable routine for Michelle. “We started with an anti-inflammatory system, and then it was about integrating more vitamin C and then vitamin A in the evening,” she says.
Vitamins A and C are arguably the two most well-researched skincare ingredients on the market and are available in a variety of forms. When it comes to topical vitamin C, the type of vitamin C that will benefit your skin the most depends on your specific needs (here’s a detailed breakdown of the various types of vitamin C and their benefits). Before a special event, Brodeur will treat Michelle’s skin with a vitamin C-infused facial—doesn’t that sound utterly dreamy and glowy?
Vitamin A, usually in the form of retinol, is a popular ingredient in evening skincare routines because it “tells” damaged skin cells to “behave” (and therefore appear) like regular, healthy skin cells, resulting in an improved complexion in a matter of weeks–and it combats acne and fine lines. (Retinol is often used at night because it can sensitize skin to sunlight. Here’s more on this wonder ingredient.)
The next treatment on Michelle Obama’s skincare line up is collagen, a fascinating ingredient that entered the mega mainstream in the past few years. “I use a gel-based collagen in which I’ll infuse vitamin C and then I’ll use oxygen to make sure the skin absorbs as much as possible,” Brodeur explains. Unfortunately, most topical and ingestible collagen treatments are animal-derived, meaning that your average collagen booster isn’t vegan-friendly. The good news is that there is an increasing number of vegan-friendly pro-collagen supplements that you can add to your regimen to protect and bolster your body’s natural supply and production of collagen.
Brodeur also ensures that Michelle stays on top of her skin’s hydration with the help of her ultra-luxe peony-infused facial oil. “Our favorite go-to is the Peoni L’extrait oil,” says Brodeur. “It’s an anti-inflammatory and makes sure the skin stays very hydrated. She can even use it on her cuticles.” Some of the beautifying ingredients include Sunflower Seed Oil, Peony Root Extract, Licorice Root, Green Tea Leaf Powder, Kakadu Plum, and Vitamin C. The concoction is designed to soothe irritation, repair damaged skin, boost luminosity, and supply vital nutrients.
The final ingredient in Michelle’s skin care is self-care! “She learned from a very young age that she needed to put herself first,” Brodeur explains. Ahh, Mrs. Obama is so wise! ”The whole gesture of cleansing your skin and applying your serums and creams, all of those things you can do for yourself and it’s the best display of self-love—it’s not vanity.” Amen.
Do you have any skincare favorite in common with Michelle Obama?
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Photo: public domain; JB Skin Guru via Instagram, Respective brands