Maintaining a glowing, plump, and healthy complexion doesn't happen overnight. It requires following a thorough skincare regimen year-round and opting for the right skincare products. No matter whether you’re striving to treat acne, dry skin, pesky signs of aging, inflamed skin, or simply aiming to sustain the radiant and youthful appearance of your skin, it’s imperative to consider skincare do’s and don’ts and to be mindful of common skincare myths to get your desired results. We'll discuss some skincare myths to help you stay on top of your skincare game. So, let’s get to it!
1. The Higher the SPF, the Better
Many of you may have heard that applying sunscreen with a higher SPF is better for the skin. However, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your skin is better protected with sunscreen containing higher SPF. SPF 30 blocks about 97% of UVB rays, while SPF blocks neats 98% of rays. Generally, sunscreen with SPF 30 is enough for applying and reapplying during the day, along with protecting the skin with clothes, a wide-brimmed hat, and sunglasses.
2. Oily Skin Doesn’t Need to Be Moisturized
Slathering on moisturizing lotions or creams to an already greasy-looking complexion may sound counterintuitive because you might think that adding more moisture to your oily skin may lead to skincare catastrophes. The truth is that applying moisturizer to oily skin has many benefits. For starters, your skin may become dry and inflamed without a moisturizer, adversely affecting your skin’s protective barrier. Moreover, when you don’t apply moisturizer, your skin’s natural reaction is to produce more oil. If you are struggling with oily skin, it's best to look for a non-comedogenic, lightweight moisturizing products that provide ample hydration and moisture without clogging your pores.¹
3. You Only Need Sunscreen Outdoors
Another widespread myth concerning sunscreen is that you don’t need to wear it when you are indoors. The sun’s damaging UV rays are all around us, even when we’re indoors. This is specifically true if you are in a place with a lot of windows or if the room has windows that don’t offer UV protection. This is the reason it’s recommended to apply sunscreen indoors too. Similarly, if you believe that you don’t need to wear your sunscreen on cloudy days, think again. UV rays can get through the clouds and affect your skin. So, never ditch your sunscreen, whether it’s cloudy or sunny.
4. Eye Creams Don’t Work
You may have come across people suggesting that investing in eye creams is useless because they don’t offer any skincare benefits. The fact is that an eye cream can provide various advantages if you choose the right formula. The key is to read through the ingredient list of eye cream and make sure it contains the right ingredients that target your specific skin concerns and only then invest in it. For instance, if you’re struggling to soothe puffy eyes, an eye cream with caffeine is your best bet. Caffeine can reduce inflammation and swelling around the eyes and make the under-eye area smoother. On the other hand, if your main concerns include dark under-eye circles, get your hands on eye cream with skin-brightening ingredients, such as vitamin C, kojic acid, and hyaluronic acid.² For fine lines and wrinkles around your eyes, a formula with peptides and retinol can be effective for your skin.
5. You Don’t Need Retinol Until After Your 40s
If you’re a skincare and beauty devotee, you might be well-versed in the wonders of retinol for the skin. This skincare agent was previously used to treat acne but has recently taken the skincare realm by storm for its anti-aging and hyperpigmentation-reducing properties. So, if you’ve been told that you should only add retinol to your skincare routine after you turn 40, you have been misguided. A preemptive approach is always better for preventing wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, and fine lines. Retinol speeds up cell turnover and boosts collagen synthesis, yielding natural anti-aging skin benefits. It’s ideal for incorporating retinol into your skincare regimen in your mid or late 20s. After all, it’s better to prevent signs of aging rather than treat them afterward.
6. The More You Exfoliate, the Better
We all know that exfoliating the skin has many benefits, as it helps to speed up the skin’s natural process of sloughing away dead skin cells and replacing them with fresher cells faster. As a result, you can achieve an even-textured, soft, and revitalized complexion. However, a common myth is that exfoliating the skin too often is good for the skin. Exfoliating the skin too much or too often can irritate and over-dry the skin. Irritated skin may lead to a compromised skin barrier, putting the skin at a higher risk of developing skin problems. So, how often should one exfoliate? The frequency of exfoliating the skin depends on your skin type and concerns. Usually, exfoliating the skin once or twice a week is recommended unless you have very dry, sensitive, or inflamed skin.
7. Not Washing Your Face Causes Acne
Though a popular one, it’s still a myth and a misconception. This inflammatory skin issue causes pimples, cysts, blemishes, whiteheads, and blackheads on your skin, but it isn’t caused by not washing your face.³ Acne is commonly caused by hormonal anomalies. It can also result from accumulated dead cells, sebum, and bacteria in the pores, which clogs them, causing inflammation and acne breakouts. Hence, washing your face isn’t the only factor that can help prevent this problem. However, proper cleansing or washing your face regularly can help to remove the buildup of these impurities from the pores.
8. There’s No Difference between Day and Night Products
If you’ve been told to use the same products for your day and night skincare routine, you are depriving your skin of various essential nutrients it needs to function at its optimal level. This is because day skincare products are manufactured with different compounds than night skincare products. For example, skincare products for the day usually contain antioxidants and SPF to help protect the skin from the effects of UV rays and other toxins in the surroundings. On the other hand, night products are made with repairing and regenerating skincare ingredients like retinol, vitamin C, AHAs, and peptides. So while it’s essential to protect and nourish the skin with specialized day products during the daytime, it’s equally crucial to use skin-renewing and healing products at night.
9. You can Shrink Your Pore Size
If you think that you can increase or decrease your pore size, we have bad news for you. Your genetics and ethnicity decide pore size, and there is only so much you can do to shrink enlarged pores. For example, people with melanated skin tones usually have larger pores than those with lighter skin tones. Some skincare ingredients can temporarily help reduce pore size, but they may not produce a lasting effect. However, you can take a few measures to make your pores appear less visible, such as avoiding comedogenic products, keeping your pores clean of all kinds of impurities, and applying certain skincare ingredients. Some in-clinic procedures can also help to reduce the appearance of enlarged pores.
10. Wearing Makeup Regularly Accelerates Your Skin’s Aging
Another myth related to the skin is that your skin will age faster if you apply makeup regularly. If you remove your makeup properly at the end of the day, you have nothing to worry about. A consistent daily cleansing routine can help remove makeup from your skin. On the contrary, if you don’t cleanse or wash your face before bedtime and let dirt, makeup, grime, and other toxins sit in your pores, it can cause inflammation and make your skin more prone to premature wrinkles, age spots, and fine lines. So makeup junkies, take a sigh of relief. Wearing makeup alone will not make your skin age faster.
We all know that there are some skincare basics that everybody should know to achieve and maintain a smooth, supple, and radiant complexion. However, while it’s important to know the dos and don’ts of an appropriate and comprehensive skincare regimen, it’s equally crucial to be wary of the common skincare myths to avoid falling for them. Avoiding these myths can help you stay on the right path and stay devoted to your skincare regimen to keep your skin appearing and feeling its best in the long run. We hope this article has helped you debunk some of your skincare myths!
- Villines, Zawn. (2022). ‘What are noncomedogenic skin care products?’, Medical News Today, Accessed February 13, 2023. Available at: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/noncomedogenic
- S. Brooklyn. (2022). ‘How to Get Rid of Dark Circles’, Sundree, Accessed February 13, 2023. Available at: https://sundree.com/blogs/news/how-to-get-rid-of-dark-circles
- Madornmo, Carrie, RN, MPH. (2022). ‘Causes and treatments for Skin Inflammation’, VeryWellHealth, Accessed February 13, 2023. Available at: https://www.verywellhealth.com/skin-inflammation-5095859