Old habits die hard and this couldn’t be truer when it comes to beauty. We all know that we should be wearing a ton of SPF and drinking gallons of water daily, but beyond that, most of us just end up doing what we’re used to. Which is totally fine, unless you’re self-sabotaging and find yourself paying the price! We break down nine of the most common – but easy to fix, phew! – beauty mistakes that we all need to stop making ASAP.
1. Assuming the SPF in your foundation is enough
Sadly, the SPF20 in your moisturizer or foundation doesn’t cut it. Not only do you use far less foundation than you would a sunscreen, it is likely to a lower SPF than needed and with no reapplication. Typically, around 1/3 to 1/2 teaspoon of minimum SPF30 is needed to sufficiently protect your face. Not only does UV exposure accelerate ageing, it any darkens blemish scars you may already have, so this is a change worth making.
2. Applying DIY face masks
Step away from the lemon juice, please. While the idea of glowing skin created with nothing but the contents of your kitchen can be appealing, especially when you’re on a budget, the reality is that it can be risky. Recipes which call for corrosive ingredients such as lemon juice or baking soda can be very harmful can compromise your skin’s moisture barrier. Irritation, burns, hypersensitivity and even salmonella (if you accidentally ingest a raw egg mask) are problems you do not want to have! We also recommend exercising caution when it comes to coconut oil. Coconut oil is very versatile and can be used as an occasional hair treatment, for example, however it is very comedogenic so can cause serious breakouts if used on the face. Don’t say we didn’t warn you!
3. Overdoing it with skincare products
We are so guilty of this one. We love nothing more than a good beauty haul and experimenting with new products. It can be seriously tempting to use everything on the shelf at once, but less is really more when it comes to skincare. Using too many products which are formulated with active ingredients can leave your skin irritated and over-exfoliated, and while layering too many hydrating ingredients is less risky, it doesn’t allow you to identify what’s really working for you.
4. Wearing makeup to the gym
You don’t have to work up a huge sweat to trap oils and bacteria under a layer of makeup. Doesn’t sound appealing, right? We didn’t think so. This can be tricky when you’re working out at lunchtime, in which case we suggest removing only your foundation and reapplying later – although you’ll likely have a healthy flush you might not want to cover!
5. Using too much dry shampoo
Dry shampoo is a haircare staple and for good reason. It saves us time and helps make hair styling so much easier. However tempting it can be to reach for the can on a daily basis, it could be detrimental to your hair and scalp health in the long term, leading to irritation, flakiness and a dull appearance. We suggest using dry shampoo only when absolutely necessary – which isn’t every second-day updo – and using a clarifying shampoo now and again to help your hair in tip top condition.
6. Touching your face
Its skincare 101 – don’t pick or touch your face! If you struggle with absent-minded picking, which many of us do, make a verbal commitment to yourself to stop. Keep your hands occupied and make it a priority, as this is the easiest way to spread bacteria and cause infections. Have you ever noticed that you get more blemishes around an area when you’ve been picking one particular spot? This is why. If you’re struggling, we suggest applying an Acne Pimple Master Patch to the areas you’ve been struggling with, to keep your skin protected and to serve as a reminder.
7. Removing your makeup off with a cleansing wipe
Makeup wipes don’t really remove your makeup, they remove the pigmented excess and mostly just move the rest around on your skin, leading to congestion, dull skin ad breakouts. If the thought of a double-cleanse right before bed is too much to bear, how about trying a balm cleanser? These types of cleansers remove makeup and SPF effectively while leaving your skin clean and ready for moisture.
8. Avoiding moisturizer when your skin is oily
Speaking of moisturizer, the last thing you want to do when your skin is feeling oily is to skip it all together! Well, this actually depends on the type of moisturizer you’re using. Dehydration typically exacerbates oily skin as your skin produces more oil to keep itself balanced – trapping you in a vicious cycle. After washing with a low pH cleanser, hydrating oily skin with a hyaluronic acid serum and a light gel moisturizer works best.