The fact of the matter is, we are all guilty of one or more of these crimes. I know I am. Bad skin habits ranging from what we put on our faces to what we put into our bodies that affect the condition and health of our skin.
In mammals, the skin is the largest organ of the body. It is made up of a number of layers of ectodermal tissue and it guards the muscles, bones, ligaments and internal organs that lie beneath it. It helps to protect the body against disease causing germs, helps to prevent water loss, regulates temperature, acts as an insulator and is a great organ of sensation.
The skin is made up of the following layers:
Epidermis; Dermis; Subcutaneous fat layer (subcutis)
The skin is the first line of defence against the harsh environment since it is the organ that directly interfaces with the outside world. That in itself should be motivation enough to get you to better look after your skin. It does a great job of protecting itself, especially when we are young. But as we get older, it needs a little more help from you.
So here is what you can do to help your skin. Not just for beauty’s sake (anti-ageing, loss of collagen; youthful radiance); but also for the sake of your skin’s health.
Bare-Faced in the Sun!
You’ve probably heard it a million gazillion times. But I swear it can never be stressed enough. People just have no idea the amount of damage the sun can do to your skin. If you are in your teens to late twenties, it may not show right now. But as the years roll by, you’ll notice the damage start to surface. Wearing sunscreen is so vitally important. Add an SPF of at least 15 to your day skin care routine. Choose a sunscreen which offers broad protection against UVB and UVA rays – UVA being the nastiest culprit of the two, causing the most damage.
My number one choice that I would recommend (and that I use myself) is the HelioCare SPF 50 Gel. They also have a spray and cream with an SPF of 50 too. They not only help to protect against sun damage, but are also packed with anti-oxidants that will help to stave off skin ageing.
Picking Your Pimples!
GUILTY AS CHARGED! I used to do this when I was so frustrated with my problematic skin. You think to yourself that it’ll take just one quick squeeze and you’ll be all done. Next thing you know you have an inflamed, irritated and stubborn lump on your face that is worse off then it was before you picked it. Fact is: you don’t know how to pick at a blemish – at least not the proper way. Nor do you know when it’s the right time to pick at a blemish and if it’s necessary to do so. So rather keep your hands off your face and seek professional help for your acne and/or acne scarring. You’ll only be making matters worse.
Going To Bed With Makeup On/Not Washing Your Face!
It is important to keep your face clean. Even if you haven’t worn make up that day, you still need to cleanse, tone, treat and moisturise twice daily.
I can honestly say that I never gone to bed with makeup on or having not washed my face. I just can’t do it. And neither should you. Just think about it: you’ve spent the entire day with your skin under layers of cosmetics. On top of all that, your skin has accumulated pollution, dust, skin cells and oil throughout the day. And you want to now go to bed with ALL of that gunk STILL in your face?!?!
At least take a facial wipe and remove it from your face if you are THAT lazy. Simple Exfoliating Facial Wipes retail for R46 at Dischem and Clicks.
Using the Wrong Products!
This can really reek havoc on your skin if you are using the wrong types of products. I discovered this first hand. All this time I am thinking that I have oily skin. And naturally, all the products I bought were specifically for oily skin. And I was having such issues with how dry and tight my skin was feeling. Especially in the mornings. I would wake up and my skin would be severely dehydrated, dry and flaking. Eventually I thought enough is enough and went out to get my skin checked. I discovered that the cleanser I was using was way too harsh for my skin. It was stripping my skin of the oils that it produced and my moisturisers were being nullified because they were the wrong type – for oily skin – so they weren’t providing for my dry skin. They were much too light, not emollient enough and would simply just ‘evaporate’ without doing anything. So I was changed from a gel to a milk cleanser and my serum and moisturiser were specifically for dry, very dry and dehydrated skin. It made all the difference in the world. The flaking has stopped. The redness is gone. The tightness is no more. My skin’s texture is smooth again and my skin is feeling good. Take time to understand what your skin needs. Stop self-diagnosing and wasting money. Get the right products once and for all.
Not Using Oils!
Many people will think that putting oils on your face is a big no-no. Well, according to Total Beauty, you are wrong. Even if you have an oily skin type, adding oils (Argan Oil or Rosehip Oil) can help to regulate oil production and can even improve acne. There are a number of facial oils available for specific skin concerns and types. Make sure to do your research first before going out and splurging. The right oil for your skin will do wonders for its health and will help keep your skin supple with a youthful and healthy glow.
“The key is to get high quality oil with a “molecular structure that’s so small it can penetrate into your skin without sitting on top and clogging your pores.”
Read the article Seven Best Oils For A Perfect Complexion to see which oils suit which skin type and/or concern.
Not Cleaning Your Makeup Brushes!
If you are not going to keep your tools clean and sanitised, your skin will suffer the consequences. You should be washing your brushes at least once very week or two. And more importantly, you need to let them air dry.
Don’t just wash the brushes and then place them back where they usually belong. Yes, there are some people who actually do that. The last thing you want is to put all that grimy stuff that grows in/on damp surfaces/places onto your skin.
Read this blog post by Tiffany D (with a video) on how to clean and dry your brushes…properly.
What You Put In Is What You’ll Get Out!
You are what you eat. Your skin is what it is because of what you eat. What you put in your mouth will reflect in the health of your skin, hair, eyes and nails. These are such health tittle tellers!
- Water – we’ve all heard of the eight glasses of water a day, not so? But did you know that you could actually be wasting your time gulping down so much water? Neither did I. According to Dr Howard Murad, M.D. (founder of Murad Inc.), drinking that much water means many more bathroom breaks. And that basically means that the water simply flushes through your body. Don’t get it twisted though. You still need to be drinking that water. But not necessarily eight glasses. Dr Murad suggests that of the number of glasses you have cut down should be replaced by eating foods high in water such as cucumbers, watermelon and zucchini (marrow vegetables). So what I have done is cut down to drinking one litre of water a day and then munching on foods high in water. Cells absorb water from food a lot easier than water that has been drunk. Eat more fruits and vegetables which also have higher percentages of water.
- Cut out the fast foods – processed foods will do nothing beneficial for your skin, body and health. The less McDonald’s, Burger King, KFC etc., the better!
- Smoothies – such a delicious, fun and easy way of getting more nutrients, vitamins and other essential minerals into your body. It is very daunting when you think you’ve got to eat at least five fruits and five vegetables a day. But with a blender, life is so much easier. Just mix in your five for the day and VOILA! All that goodness in one go.
- Exercise – good for the body. Good for the skin. Good for your health. Do it!!
So that’s that. Among the many of the bad habits out there, these ones I felt were the most common, and for me personally, the most relatable. I hope you enjoyed the post.
Until the next one…take care 🙂