Maintaining proper skincare can be a real challenge, especially if you’re not entirely sure what you should be doing! Our skin is the body’s largest organ and acts as a barrier against infection, and keeping our skin healthy and hydrated will help strengthen that barrier. There are so many rumours circulating in the skincare industry about what we should and shouldn’t be doing, so to help you work out what’s correct and not so correct, below are six skincare myths debunked:
1. Skin should feel tight after washing
If your skin isn’t feeling ‘hydrated and soft’ after cleansing there may be a chance that your cleanser is too harsh for your skin. Astringent cleansers can be effective in removing excess sebum from skin that is oily, however if your skin is feeling tight after cleansing it’s probably not the right cleanser for you. It’s important not to compromise the natural balance of your skin’s barrier, which can lead to irritation and dehydration. A creamier cleanser will leave your skin feeling fresh, soft and cleansed, whilst keeping skin balanced and protected. Understanding your skin’s needs and trying different products will help you find the right products for you.
2. Eating specific foods cause skin problems and acne
This is one of the biggest skincare myths many of us have heard. The truth is that there is no evidence at all that consuming any specific form of food causes acne. In fact, it’s an oily substance called sebum that can lead to acne. Sebaceous glands are all over the body, apart from the palms of our hands and soles of our feet. When the body has the right amount of sebum, it acts as a barrier to protect your skin. Too much sebum is what causes acne, whilst not enough sebum can lead to dry, cracked and irritated skin. Eating specific types of food does not affect or change your sebum levels on the skin.
3. Tanned skin is a sign of good health
Although many of us love the appearance the healthy glow of a tan brings, tanned skin is actually ‘damaged’ skin. All sun exposure is harmful to the skin, unfortunately. Wearing a broad-spectrum SPF when exposed to the sun is crucial to maintaining healthy skin. ‘Broad spectrum’ SFP means it covers both UVA and UVB rays, both of which are damaging, so lather up the sunscreen in the morning before you head out for the day. And for extra caution wear a daily moisturiser with SPF included.
4. Facials and microdermabrasion are good for your skin care routine.
Whilst these treatments may feel nice, (and who doesn’t love a bit of pampering!) it has been found that they do not necessarily provide long-term skin benefits, and can even lead to acne and irritation for some people. These types of beauty treatments can negatively impact your top layer of skin called the epidermis and cause an imbalance in the sebum and bacteria on your skin’s surface, leaving it open for infection and further damage. A good, regular skincare routine at home will provide many more benefits for your skin and avoid the need for more serious (and expensive) so called treatments.
5. The higher the SPF, the longer you can stay in the sun
This is one of the more potentially damaging skincare myths! SPF level is only an indication of how much it protects you from the sun’s rays, as opposed to how long it will protect you for. It is also important to note that even though you can get products with higher SPF, there is very little difference in level of protection above SPF 30. Sunscreen should, ideally, be reapplied every two hours, so if you’re out in the sun all day, be aware of the time and remember to reapply!
6. Using multiple skincare products will produce a better result
If we’re struggling with managing our skin and its’ needs, we often think the more skincare products we throw at ourselves the better! Adopt a ‘less is more’ attitude; over-washing your face can dry out your skin, or cause a sebum imbalance. Over moisturising can clog pores and congest the skin.
Face cleansing should not be done more than twice a day and ensuring the cleanser you use is suited to your skin is critical. Exfoliating can help to unclog your pores. However, it is recommended that exfoliating be done infrequently, once or perhaps twice per week. Applying a mask once per week at home can also refresh your skin.
A good skincare regime will likely include cleansing morning and night, applying moisturiser once a day, and perhaps a serum or treatment after cleansing at night. Using a face cloth with your cleanser can provide a gentle exfoliation, too. So, take some time to learn about and understand your skin’s needs to find the right products that will keep your skin hydrated and feeling healthy every day!
We’ve compiled a simple skincare routine based on whether your skin is Normal/Dry or Combination/Oily to help you get started and focus on the important things when it comes to skincare. Find out more about which products are right for your skin type here.