With ever changing trends, and so much information out there, it can be a little overwhelming to know what exactly you should be doing (and what you should be avoiding). Most of us want to improve our skin in one way or another, and skincare is one of the first things we look to, to help! But there are some common skincare mistakes you could be making which is in fact sabotaging your skincare goals. We break them down below, so you can take your skincare routine to the next level.
1. Getting too complicated
In the past few years, 12-step skincare routines have been all the rage. Despite the popularity of these routines, skincare products can occasionally cause more problems than offer solutions. Sometimes, less is more when it comes to taking care of your skin. The standard recommendation is a cleanser, one kind of treatment, moisturizer, and SPF during the day. Your skin could get overloaded if you do TOO much.
2. Not knowing your skin type
Knowing your skin type is one of the most important parts of establishing a good skincare routine. There was a period when we wanted to use all the oily, creamy products being marketed to us. It seemed like every celebrity's YouTube skincare video had everyone describing their dry skin and it made us want to use luxurious, hydrating products. But if you have combination skin for example, you really should be using a salicylic acid wash and light moisturizer rather then oil-based products. When you choose the right products for your skin type, magic can happen.
3. Not wearing SPF
This is the most boring but perhaps most important recommendation for taking care of your skin. Not only does it protect against fine lines and keep your complexion from aging - it protects against skin cancer. Almost every dermatologist will tell you this. There are many sunscreens on the market that are barely noticeable so you can find one that works best for you. Experts suggest SPF 30 or higher.
4. Not washing your makeup brushes/pillowcases
This is another less glamorous tip. If you are doing everything right, but consistently getting acne flare-ups, it could be a bacterial issue. The culprit could be picking up bacteria from surfaces that touch your face. The usual suspects are your pillowcase, make-up brushes, and phones. Make sure you're changing your pillowcase at least once a week, if not more often, and make sure your phone and make-up brushes are getting regular cleaning as well
5. Using products with too much fragrance
This is an unfortunate rule because half the fun of walking into a store that sells skincare is all the beautiful fragrances. Most high-end skincare brands are founded on the idea that all their products have a similar luxurious smell. Professional perfume makers create a signature scent for everything from your moisturizer to your blush. The fragrance is often suspended in alcohol, which is one of the most irritating, drying ingredients for the skin.
6. Not moisturizing enough
We know we just told a cautionary tale about using too much moisture if you're prone to acne… but moisture is obviously important if you're someone with dry skin. Not enough moisture can cause problems as well. If you don't moisturize, oil can get trapped in the form of breakouts and milia. It's important to find a moisturizer you can use over your active ingredients to keep your skin soft and stop your pores from holding onto oil and debris.
7. Not having a routine
Building a routine is the key to happiness and success, but it can be hard if you have an unpredictable schedule or just get lazy. That's why it's so important to make your routine enjoyable and pick out the most important parts. Most of us need a different routine for morning and night. Once you've established a simple routine that you like, pick a few steps that make life easier. You will only see results with consistency.
8. Not paying attention to active ingredients
You cannot ignore this. As a skincare lovers, we are willing to try anything and love the idea of a serum infused with 100 different plant extracts. However - if you talk to a dermatologist, they will tell you that there are less than 10 proven active ingredients on the skincare market. Occlusives, like glycerin and petrolatum, moisturize. Hyaluronic acid, salicylic acid, and glycolic acid all exfoliate and prevent breakouts. Benzoyl peroxide fights acne and retinol fights wrinkles and breakouts.