Kim Kardashian On Her Adult Acne: “If People Saw It They’d Be Really Shocked”

Photo: James Devaney/GC Images.
Contrary to prior interviews she’s given, Kim Kardashian is no longer taking extreme measures to chase a “youthful” complexion. Yes, at 42, she looks the way she looks and people have no issue sharing their unsolicited thoughts. But the famous Skims mogul and mother wants to be clear: Her aging process is about maintenance. 
“I hate to be that person that's like, ‘As you get older...’ But as you do, I think that making your skin as — I don't even want to say 'youthful' because I'm not even trying to chase something — but you just want to work with what you have,” Kardashian explains. We’re on the phone to talk about her skincare brand, Skkn By Kim. The luxury refillable label launched in June of 2022 and continues to expand as Kardashian finds new ways to put her stamp on the skincare industry.
Now more than ever, the brand is a personal passion project.

On her adult-onset acne

To my knowledge, Kardashian's skin is naturally amazing. But she says, that hasn't been her experience in the past few years. “Oh, I've gotten full acne, like full bouts of it,” Kardashian says. Although, it's somewhat of a secret to the general public. “It's [concealed] really well under makeup," she adds. "But I've documented it. I think if people saw it they'd be really shocked to know that I had that experience.”
Treating out-of-nowhere acne, for Kardashian and the rest of us, is like trying to complete a 1,000-piece puzzle where every tiny square is the same color. "I'm like, should I stop using oils if I have acne? Then realizing, no, to stop using oil hasn't been helpful," Kardashian explains. "It could be hormonal or a change in supplements. Every time I change the way that I eat or try different foods — I guess my skin has gotten really sensitive. It's been really interesting to try new products and figure out what works for different skin that I never thought I would experience in my 40s."

On her chronic psoriasis

In addition to dealing with adult acne, Kardashian also has psoriasis. “I'd love to thank my mother for that issue; I'm the only one of her kids that got it,” Kardashian tells me, seemingly with some real resentment. Trying to figure out how to clear the chronic rashes has been nothing short of frustrating. “I'm still very confused about my psoriasis and what triggers it,” she explains. “Sometimes I'll be completely stressed out and I'll be completely clear with my psoriasis. Sometimes I'll be zen as can be, not a care in the world, and my psoriasis will completely flare up. They say it should be the opposite. I've kind of given up on trying to figure it out."

On her skin-care routine

With access to the best facialists in the world, Kardashian has been educated on skincare ingredients, which is why she wanted to create her own line in the first place. "I've learned so much along the way from all the experts," she explains. "I want to share those tips and tricks."
When Kardashian was starting to get random breakouts, her facialist introduced her to pumpkin enzymes, a natural ingredient for skin exfoliation. Kardashian says that a flash enzyme face mask was a big help to her skin, "especially if [I] had blemishes, putting a little bit of pumpkin enzyme as a blemish mask, sitting it on there — that's how I first became aware of pumpkin enzymes," she explains.
The pumpkin enzyme mask became such a key player in her weekly skincare routine, Kardashian decided to bring it into her Skkn by Kim collection. "I would have never imagined I'd use pumpkin enzymes on my skin," Kardashian admits, "but becoming aware that [enzymes] are so used in the industry, I wanted to bring that to the consumer." The Skkn By Kim Resurfacing Mask, which launches on October 4, “has the fermented pumpkin enzymes with the glycolic and lactic acid, which helps to enhance your skin texture and your complexion,” Kardashian explains.
Skkn by Kim Resurfacing Mask
She uses this new Resurfacing Mask just twice a week in conjunction with a full Skkn by Kim regime. "For the fall, I always like to extra moisturize and extra exfoliate," Kardashian explains. Her new favorite skincare move? Mixing her face oil into moisturizer, as the kids do. “It's a new thing for me; I used to like to be so matte before, so I never really used oil,” she explains. “If you get a spray tan, oils usually rub that off. I used to be so scared of oils and think, are oils going to give me oily skin or make me break out? None of the above. I use a little bit, mixed with moisturizer, you just look so glowy and it feels like the moisture holds.”

On TikTok beauty trends

Different forms of skin-care “cocktailing” have become super trendy on TikTok. Kardashian is influenced by skincare content. “I order everything, trust me,” Kardashian says, “even if it's from Korea.” Though, she won't buy in all the way. "I always like to ask my esthetician and she always gives me the best advice," Kardashian adds. "Sometimes it's hard to know what to believe.” So, what does Kardashian's FYP look like? Lots of hairstyling tips. "Not so much for me, but for my kids," she clarifies.

On her vibe for fall

To that end, Kardashian is enjoying the evolution that is aging, finding her skincare routine and makeup preferences. "I think that your style changes for sure," she explains. “I used to love super matte makeup and I never thought I would like super creamy products. Now, I just want to look creamy and dewy." Of course, Kardashian is always open to bucking the mainstream makeup trends. “I wonder if I'll go back to super matte in the fall...”
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