There are plenty of old wives’ tales that we’re all familiar with and although there’s truth in some of them, a lot are total rubbish. We’re here to debunk some of the most well-known skin care myths so that you can stop wasting your time on unnecessary skincare products and rituals and start treating your skin in the way it deserves.
Skin care products are working if they make your skin tingle
If your skincare products create a tingling sensation then you should stop using them because although you might think that this means they’re working, they’re actually irritating your skin. Although you might think that these products make your skin look and feel cleaner, over time you’ll start to notice your skin becoming dry, red and inflamed.
Using irritants on your skin will cause a breakdown in collagen and elastin which will prevent your skin from healing properly. If your skincare products do start to make your skin tingle, stop using them right away and replace them with something of a gentler formulation, like those intended for sensitive skin.
Your skin changes so it’s good to change your skincare products every few months
This is a myth that should definitely be ignored. This will not only be great for your skin but also for your purse too. Skincare products are expensive and there’s really no need to replace them before they’re empty because over time they don’t become ineffective. One thing you may notice is that after using your products for a while, your skin might not improve as dramatically as it did at first. This is because your skin was probably in really bad condition when you first started, whereas now it’s perfectly healthy and merely needs to be maintained.
All women grow out of acne
This is also untrue. As it happens, it’s men that have the upper hand as the majority of males typically grow out of acne after puberty as their hormone levels stabilise. Women, however, suffer fluctuations in their hormones constantly through their lives because of menstrual cycles, menopause and pregnancy, which means that some women suffer from acne well into adulthood, sometimes beyond their 30s and 40s.
If you are suffering from adult acne then using products that are intended for oily, acne-prone skin is essential to keep it at bay. Stay away from products that contain oil as this will only make your skin worse. Instead, try an oil-free product like Dermalogica’s Active Moist.
SPF 30 provides double the protection of SPF 15
Another old wives’ tale, we’re afraid. Sun protection with a rating of SPF 30 actually only provides around four per cent more protection than a sunscreen with SPF 15. The only way to ensure that your skin is constantly protected from the effects of the sun’s damaging rays is to continually reapply sunscreen throughout the day, especially if you go into a swimming pool, and avoid being out in the sun during peak hours between 11am and 4pm.
Age spots happen as we get older and they’re inevitable
Believe it or not, age spots are nothing to do with age. It’s true that you’re likely to have more age spots when you reach 40 than you had at 20, but this is purely to do with the sun exposure that your skin has suffered over the years. The sun’s UVA and UVB rays are always degenerating the condition of your skin, especially if you don’t wear sunscreen, and age spots are the result of this – although they’re harmless. Age spots can also be genetic and it is this that will dictate how susceptible you are to them. Although they’re harmless, a lot of women really don’t like them and will use cosmetics to lighten them. The only way to really avoid them is to use a high factor sun protection every day, regardless of the time of year.
Oily and greasy foods are a huge cause of acne
This is something that a lot of people believe and it’s not true at all. Although they’re certainly not healthy and won’t do your body or skin any favours, there’s little scientific evidence to say that they cause acne. That said, your diet can encourage your skin to produce excess oil, which means – if you don’t use the correct skincare products – oil can build-up, clog the pores and cause infection which will consequently result in an acne breakout. It seems dairy products are foods to be wary of, as there is evidence to suggest that overeating dairy may cause breakouts.
Blackheads are a result of dirty skin
Although they are dark, blackheads aren’t dirt and can’t be washed away. Blackheads are merely the result of blocked pores. When the skin produces too much sebum and dead skin cells are preventing the oil from being released through the pore, it causes a clog. When this blockage nears the surface of the skin, oxygen causes it to turn black and only using a special exfoliating face wash – which cleans deeply into the pores – will clear the blockage and remove the blackhead.