7 Bad Beauty Habits That Could Be Harming Your Skin
7 Bad Beauty Habits That Could Be Harming Your Skin

7 Bad Beauty Habits That Could Be Harming Your Skin

We all know the right skincare can transform the look and feel of your complexion but certain habits – be it using too many active ingredients or over-exfoliating – can cause more harm than good. Here, three skin experts reveal the bad habits you need to avoid.
By Rebecca Hull

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Habit #1: Scrubbing Too Much

Why It’s An Issue: “People are often guilty of over-scrubbing in an attempt to tackle flakiness – either with physical exfoliants or via microdermabrasion. While this can easily become a habit, doing it too often can actually cause micro-tears in the skin and eventually thin it out. I often see clients who believe they have sensitive skin, when the reality is they’ve just overused exfoliating products and in turn, damaged their skin barrier. Instead, use gentle acid exfoliants, like lactic, phytic and fruit acids. These will help to reduce dryness without stripping the skin, ensuring the rest of your skincare can still penetrate properly.” Sarah Chapman, Celebrity Facialist & Skincare Expert 

Habit #2: Overloading Your Complexion

Why It’s An Issue: “A mistake many of us make is using too many products in our routine. It’s what I call ‘skincare overload’ and it’s a habit people get into because they think the more the better. This couldn’t be further from the truth. The more you layer on, the more likely you are to get breakouts and suffocate your complexion. Thin, light layers are key, as is a small and consistent routine of products that truly work for you. Remember the power of three: cleanse, serum, SPF. You can of course add moisturiser if needed, but your routine doesn’t have to be any more extensive than this.” Abigail James, Award-Winning Facialist & Wellness Expert 

Habit #3: Disrupting Your Skin’s pH

Why It’s An Issue: “As we’ve mentioned, consistency is key, so it’s best to use what works for you and allow at least a month to see results. Switching things up all the time can lead to damage – especially if you’re using lots of astringent acids. Your skin needs sufficient time to react and respond to active ingredients. Likewise, if you use too many, rather than sticking to the rule of three, your skin’s acid mantle can become compromised. This is both a physical and chemical barrier which provides a crucial form of protection from the external environment. When it’s compromised, skin becomes more susceptible to bacteria, irritants and pollutants, leading to skin that’s more vulnerable and prone to inflammation. Everyone should use products that are pH-balanced where possible; if you don’t, you’re continually destroying your acid mantle which can cause long-term problems.” – Sarah

Habit #4: Never Checking Your Dates 

Why It’s An Issue: “So many of us neglect to check the date on our skincare products – particularly sunscreen. Like anything, products expire, and if you’re using them past a certain time, they won’t be as effective. This is especially risky with products like SPF – if it’s out of date, you’re less likely to get the optimum levels of protection your skin needs. Always check use by or best before dates. Often there is a symbol on the packaging which indicates how long you can continue to use the product once you’ve opened it. It sounds like a small issue, but it can have a big impact on your skin.” Dr Justine Kluk, Consultant Dermatologist & Skincare Expert

I often see clients who believe they have sensitive skin, when the reality is they’ve just OVERUSED EXFOLIATING PRODUCTS and in turn, DAMAGED their SKIN BARRIER.

Habit #5: Storing Your Products The Wrong Way

Why It’s An Issue: “This may not seem like a bad habit, but I often see people leave their skincare out on shelves and dressing tables in direct sunlight. It’s a big no-no. When you leave formulas exposed this way, they go off incredibly fast. UV rays break down formulas and can cause products to split, making them less potent. Too much exposure causes everything to oxidise, and this can also lead to skin sensitivity, too. Always store everything in the shade, and preferably in the coolest area of your house.” – Abigail

Habit #6: Not Reapplying SPF 

Why It’s An Issue: “I’m not saying you have to apply SPF every two hours, but to only do so in the morning, and then not at all, is not enough. You need to apply another layer at least once during the day to maintain optimum protection. It can be a faff on top of make-up, but there are many formulas – sprays and powders – that can lock in an extra layer with minimal effort. Your skin will thank you for it.” – Abigail 

Habit #7: Not Focusing On Prominent Concerns

Why It’s An Issue: “Many of us have a combination of dry patches, pigmentation, fine lines and blocked pores, so focusing on these prominent concerns is important. The bad habit lots of us all fall into is slapping skincare on without much thought. Your skin is constantly changing due to lifestyle, environment, hormones and diet, so it’s hugely important to pay attention and ensure your skincare meets your needs. For example, if your skin is dry and dehydrated one week, focus on that and give it the love it needs. Likewise, if spots are plaguing you, shift your attention to them. It’s less about using lots of different products, and more about making subtle changes to use only what you really need.” – Sarah

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