In our Ivan Lam interview, you’ll learn how he keeps his acne at bay, his top skin care ingredients, and his current skin care routine.
If you’re one of Ivan Lam’s 200K+ YouTube subscribers, you know and love the Los Angeles-based vlogger for his amazing makeup tutorials and skin care tips. Ivan grew up in Malaysia until he was 18 and developed a love for K-beauty after he discovered K-pop.
We had a chance to ask Ivan some of the biggest questions we had about his skin care routine and how he became obsessed with K-beauty.
What’s the goal of your YouTube channel?
My channel focuses mainly on skin care and makeup, and the occasional heart-to-heart chats. My goal is definitely to promote self-love and acceptance on my platform.
When did you first become interested in skin care and K-beauty in particular?
I think I was first introduced to K-beauty when I was introduced to Korean pop music. Just watching the ads for beauty made me so interested in how Koreans achieved that flawless skin!
What was your journey like when it came to clearing up your skin? What products did you use and what were the skin care mistakes you realized you were making?
[Laughs] Clearing up skin is a journey, all right. Even though my skin is better than it was six years ago, it is still an everyday struggle for me! I saw a lot of improvement when I starting using milder treatments; I used to slather on benzoyl peroxide until my skin peeled, and obviously that threw off the balance of my skin.
What are your top tips for people who want to clear their acne?
Definitely realize that your skin is a reflection of everything in your life, literally. You have to control your diet, hormones, stress levels, and of course, skin care! Listen to your what you need in life and change those things about it! Acne doesn’t change overnight, and if you expect it to, then you will face a lot of disappointment, which leads to more stress, in my opinion. Listen to the needs of your body. Do your research, be an educated consumer, and find products that work for you. I also recommend limiting the intake of dairy.
What do you wish you had known about skin care growing up?
I wish I had known that more isn’t always more, and skin doesn’t just magically heal overnight. There’s no mask in the world that will clear up your skin in one treatment. Skin care is a lifestyle, just like fitness and practicing mental health.
What are common mistakes men make when it comes to skin care?
[Laughs] The first mistake is not using skin care! And thinking that they can only use skin care for men. Skin care is universal. I’ve had so many men come up to me and tell me they only use bar soap as skin care, and their skin looks fine. Well yes, of course your skin will look fine, you’re only in the 20s! But once you hit your 30s, 40s and so on, that’s when you start seeing the irreversible damage.
What are the top three ingredients you recommend to your friends for better skin?
I definitely always recommend a chemical exfoliant (AHA/BHA) and hyaluronic acid. Also, sunscreen (titanium dioxide/zinc oxide) is a definite must!
What’s your current skin care routine?
My routine changes about monthly, but I currently use DHC’s Deep Cleansing Oil, followed with a Clarisonic brush and the Etude House SoonJung pH 6.5 Whip Cleanser. I then use the Acwell Licorice pH Balancing Cleansing Toner. After that, I rotate between the Cosrx Triple C Lightning Liquid serum and Missha’s Time Revolution Night Repair. I use the Etude House SoonJung 2x Barrier Intensive Cream and top it off with the Cosrx Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Mask. On some days, I’ll use the TLC Framboos Glycolic Night Serum by Drunk Elephant if I need extra exfoliation.
For my day routine, I just take out the overnight mask, and apply sunscreen over my moisturizer! I’m currently using the Missha Near Skin Dustless Defense Sun Block SPF 50+/PA+++.