In the quest of achieving clearer, smoother, and youthfully glowing skin, we willingly spend more bucks on skincare products. While the thought that “the more expensive something is, the more it’s effective” is true for some, unfortunately, this is not the case for everyone. Buying expensive skincare products in hopes of achieving that glass skin hurts so much when we instead end up damaging our skin after using those. While the culprits we know are usually the common lifestyle factors such as stress and aging, they may also be the common skincare mistakes we unwittingly commit.
To help you maximize your skincare and keep you protected from unhealthy skincare patterns, we’ve listed common yet unnoticed skincare mistakes to avoid.
1. Using skincare products with harmful chemicals
One of the most common skincare mistakes that many tend to overlook is using products with harmful chemicals or toxins. There are products that often have ingredients like sulfates, parabens, silicones, phenoxyethanol, and more which can cause skin irritation, clog pores, get absorbed through the skin, and cause other worse skin-threatening effects. Be careful though because the “natural” labeling doesn’t always mean the product is natural and safe. Some skincare products mask themselves as natural yet while a small portion is derived from a natural source, there are still harmful chemicals in its formulation. Ensure that prior to buying a product, you read its label first. Choose only those that use natural ingredients, are toxin-free, and are dermatologically tested. This way, you don’t only care for your skin. You also care for the environment and help reduce greenhouse gases.
2. Pimple picking or popping
Let’s admit it, it’s tempting to squeeze, prick, or pop a zit. However, doing such won’t necessarily get rid of the problem. It may even push bacteria and pus deeper into the skin.
If you forcefully squeeze out a pimple, the bacteria lying in the follicles will also spread to the other follicles. This implies that the infected pore may also affect the healthy ones, causing more pimples to break out. Besides, it may cause more damage and irritation, which may lead to scar or mark formation, hence delaying the natural healing process.
3. Applying sunscreen only during the summer season
Sunscreen is more than just protection against the sun when on the beach or outdoors. Aside from preventing burnt skin due to sun exposure, hyperpigmentation, and premature aging, it also helps prevent skin cancer that UV rays may cause in the long run. While these rays are mostly coming from the sun, the light coming from electronic devices such as smartphones can also penetrate your skin and cause hyperpigmentation. Such UV rays can also cause fine lines, wrinkles, dark spots on your face, and other early signs of aging.
Opt to apply sunscreen every single day, regardless of the weather. Ideally, you apply an SPF of at least 30 for better protection. Check also if your product has a broad-spectrum protection label.
It’s best to use a mineral-based sunscreen that offers broad-spectrum protection and is SPF 30 or above to keep your skin protected from the harmful rays.
4. Not layering hyaluronic acid
Hyaluronic acid is indeed a mega moisturizer as it can hold up to 1000 times its own weight in water through extracting moisture from the air. However, should you opt to apply the ingredient during winter, remember to always follow it with a moisturizer for you to help trap the ingredient in your skin’s barrier. If not, hyaluronic acid goes excavating for moisture within the skin instead of doing this at the surface, thus depleting moisture and drying the skin.
You can opt for hydrators and moisturizers to keep the skin moisturized and protected, and one good ingredient to look for among them is hyaluronic acid.
Many think that over-exfoliating by applying chemical-fused serums and physical scrubs frequently works for the skin. However, the skin doesn’t replenish itself quick enough to endure constant rubbing and cleaning. You must let your skin cells live their short lives prior to just scrubbing them away. This way, you protect your skin from redness and irritation as there are no baby cells underneath yet waiting to come up.
Consider exfoliating only once to three times a week using gentler ingredients or formula.
6. Not double cleansing
While double cleansing may require a bit of extra work and time, it’s always worth it. We all know that not cleansing the face thoroughly won’t only cause breakout but will also prompt premature aging. This is because the impurities and dirt that may be collected on the face contain free radicals, which disrupt the natural elastin and cause fine lines and wrinkles.
Make sure to double cleanse using effective and safe products. While oil is an ideal cleanser, keep in mind to also avoid these oil cleansing mistakes.
7. Sleeping Carelessly
Many of us usually have a bedtime skincare regimen. However, this may be done in vain if the sleeping environment isn’t conducive. This means it may be too cold, too dry, or contains unclean pillowcases. To ensure better sleeping conditions, you can use a humidifier to add moisture to the air during the winter to prevent dry skin. Keep your pillowcases and hair clean also.
Another factor to consider is sleep. If the ideal sleeping time isn’t followed or you’re always deprived of sleep, it’s not only your immune system that’s going to be affected but your skin, too! Sleeping is a surefire way for skin repair, better blood circulation, and collagen rebuilding, so let’s not take it for granted.
The bottom line
To have healthier, moisturized, and glowing skin, make sure to do skincare responsibly and meticulously. Use only products that are suitable for your skin type and those that address your skin concerns. Likewise, avoid making the mistakes listed above.
Remember to create and do your skincare routine mindfully. Your skin will thank you.
Written by Katie Pierce, a teacher-slash-writer who loves telling stories to an audience, whether it’s bored adults in front of a computer screen or a bunch of hyperactive 4-year-olds. Writing keeps her sane (most of the time) and allows her to enjoy some quiet time in the evening before she walks into a room of screaming kids (all of whom she loves dearly) the next morning.