Interview: Keke Palmer Reveals the Skin-Care Products She Swears By for Cystic Acne

Palmer reveals that one of the things that has helped her manage her acne the most has been seeking professional guidance. “Obviously, I would say it’s expensive, but one of the things that helped me the most is going to see an esthetician, just because they’re constantly working on it and helping you every step of the way,” she explains somewhat hesitantly, understanding that “not everybody can really invest in an esthetician.”

Thankfully, she’s also found a few products that her skin has been loving as of late, including the Renée Rouleau Rapid Response Detox Masque and Triple Berry Smoothing Peel. She’s also been loving MDacne’s cleanser along with Estee Lauder’s Advanced Night Repair Serum. “I love doing that routine throughout my week. It just helps, I feel like, really decongest the skin,” she says. 

The Smoothing Peel contains mandelic acid, which, as board-certified dermatologist Ellen Marmur, MD, previously explained to Allure, is an alpha-hydroxy acid that gently exfoliates and increases cell turnover to lessen the appearance of acne, dull skin, uneven texture, and hyperpigmentation. The Detox Masque and cleanser both include salicylic acid, a beta-hydroxy acid known to dissolve debris that clogs pores and act as an anti-inflammatory, as board-certified dermatologist Naissan O. Wesley, MD, previously told Allure

With all those active acids going on the skin, the Night Repair serum is a great balancing product because it’s full of peptides. Peptides in skin-care products, as previously explained by board-certified dermatologist David Kim, MD, are designed to boost collagen production and help reduce the appearance of fine lines by making the skin firmer. 

Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Multi-Recovery Complex

Renée Rouleau Triple Berry Smoothing Scrub

Renée Rouleau Rapid Response Detox Masque

MDacne Hydrating Cleanser

Incorporating wellness practices into her routine spans beyond addressing her health and skin issues; as someone who is constantly in front of cameras, on planes, and just around a lot of people, Palmer finds that she has to be more intentional about taking care of her mental health. “I love journaling,” she excitedly shares with Allure. “It helps me so so much to get my feelings, my thoughts, and all that kind of stuff out.” 

Though she’s used to the hustle and bustle of a career in Hollywood (she has been doing it since she was 11, after all) she still finds it very necessary to take breaks. “I really try to be intentional with my schedule in terms of what I’m gonna allow to happen all in one day,” she explains. Admittedly, some days, she’ll push herself past her limits, but for the most part — and especially these days — the actress is keen on scheduling time to relax, which often just looks like sleeping. “Sometimes all you need is a good nap,” she says.