5 Habits That Are Actually Sabotaging Your Skin

Whether you’re acne prone or not, it’s crucial to have a consistent skin care routine to keep your face glowing. But we know it’s hard. Sure, you probably know the basics: don’t sleep with your makeup on, use a good face wash, and moisturize, but with endless tips and advice, it’s hard to tell what’s actually helping your skin. So in order to ensure you’re treating your skin right, we’ve debunked all the skincare myths by talking to dermatologist Dr. Bernard Liautaud. Are you guilty of any of these skin faux pas?

1. Over-exfoliating

Exfoliating can and should be a part of your skincare routine, but over-exfoliating can make it dry and susceptible to break outs. It’s good to get rid of dead skin cells to create new ones, but don’t overdo it because yes, there is such a thing as over exfoliating. According to dermatologist Dr. Liautaud, exfoliating is not an imperative part of your routine. He actually says that, “Exfoliation can cause more damage. You are killing the good cells protecting you from impurities.” Instead, he suggests refraining from exfoliating, but if necessary, only do it once a week.

2. Not moisturizing if you have oily skin

The moisturizing debate is endless. Some say you have to and others say that they’ve never done it in their life. Christina, a student from Concordia University, says it’s important no matter what skin type: “I moisturize my face twice a day with jojoba oil and my body with regular lotion.” Dr. Liautaud also says that choosing the right moisturizer can also make a difference. He explains that, “often, the cause of acne and blackheads if from the oil that the skin produces. If your face is too oily, it can cause acne. In that case, you need to avoid comedogenic products.” Comedogenic products have an oil substance that clog your pores, so if your face is oily, it’s better to avoid them.

3. Sleeping on dirty pillows

You should be changing you pillows twice a week, not just once…or every other week (you know who you are). Dr. Liautaud believes that this step is crucial. He says, “Change your pillow twice a week and your bed sheets once a week.” You can also tie your hair in a silk scarf so that any excess product doesn’t rub on you face as well (bonus: silk is also really great for preventing hair breakage!).

4. Not wearing sunscreen

Always wear sunscreen. It slows down the process of wrinkles and prevents skin cancer and facial brown spots. Dr. Liautaud tells us, “I always recommend sunscreen to my patients who want to slow down the aging process.” It doesn’t matter if you’re indoors or not because UVA exposure occurs even through windows. What level of SPF should you use? The American Academy of Dermatology says that everyone should use a minimum of SPF 30 everyday. But you’ll need to reapply it because with time, it wears off. To find the ideal SPF for your skin tone, talk to a dermatologist.

5. Over-treating your skin

When you have a zit, you want to do everything in your power to get rid of it. In doing so you might be using soaps that are very concentrated and dry. This is actually less helpful according to Dr. Liautaud. “You should never overdue anything,” he says. “When you use a soap that’s too dry, it will irritate the pimple. It won’t make it better.” Instead he says it’s better to stick to soft soaps that won’t overdo it. “It’s good if it has salicylic acid, but nothing greasy,” he says. His recommendation for a oft soap is Neutrogena’s Deep Clean Facial Cleanser.

Mind blowing huh? You can’t just assume your routine is right because it works for someone else. Still aren’t sure what to do? Ask a dermatologist to find out what works best for you.

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