While we've come a long way with the technology behind acne patches, the best ones still look like circular Band-Aids. Sure, they serve an important purpose — to suck the gunk out of a clogged pore — but they don't look cute doing it.
Former beauty editor Julie Schott wants to change that with an acne patch that's actually meant to be seen. Her new skin-care brand, Starface, is born out of the idea that pimples are inherently human, and are best treated with a bright yellow star.
Before launching her own beauty business, Schott was an editor at Elle magazine, curating the publication's beauty content. "Working in beauty, I've always had access to the best skin-care products, education, dermatologists, studies — all of it," Schott tells us. "Still, I always had acne. It seemed like the more I tried, the worse my skin looked."
Instead of getting frustrated — or worse, hibernating to ride out the lifespan of a gnarly pimple — Schott found the best remedy was reframing her point of view. "Acne is hard because it's partly hormonal, partly genetic. There are all these factors that influence our skin," she explains. "There's truly no magic treatment and acne affects everyone — literally 95% of the population — so I'm like, "Who gives a shit about a pimple or two?"
The tricky part is that society tells us we should "give a shit," and the most vulnerable population — teenagers — are taught to hide their skin when it's not clear and smooth. "There's a problem with our language," says Schott. "I hate when people talk about acne and say things like 'blemish' or 'imperfection.'"
Armed with her industry knowledge, Schott left her post at Elle, hoping to create an acne-care product void of shame-y undertones. Thus, Starface was born to put a positive spin — a literal smiley face — on acne treatments.
A patch proved to be the perfect place for the new brand to meet the needs of its target audience. "There are so many people who don't have a dermatologist, and they put together a skin-care routine based on what they find on Reddit, Instagram, or articles they find on the internet — and that's cool," says Schott. "Knowing that, we wanted to make a pimple patch because it's low-risk, high-reward, something that can be introduced into whatever you're doing. It won't break you out, and will hopefully help clear your breakouts and just help you feel better."
As for the science behind the patch, Schott tells us Starface stickers are clean and gentle. "These patches are made with hydrocolloid, an ingredient proven to help draw out infection from a pimple while protecting it from outside bacteria," she explains. "It's safe for everyone, from teens with reactive skin to pregnant women who are eliminating ingredients like glycolic acid, retinol, or salicylic acid from their routines." Plus, the stickers are both cruelty-free and vegan.
Beyond the formulation, the colour, star shape, and floss-sized magnetic carrying case make the brand stand out amongst a sea of medicinal Band-Aid boxes. "We're all about making skin care, and acne care specifically, fun and positive," says Schott. "Acne products should make everyone feel extremely welcome because acne doesn't discriminate; we all experience it."
Each Star Pod starter kit includes 32 stickers (8 sheets, with 4 stickers on each) for £27. Refills include 32 stickers for £12.
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