Most of us follow a skincare routine whether or not we are conscious of it. There are things we do out of habit, not even realizing the damage it does to our skin at times. Here are a few things that one must avoid when it comes to skin care…
- Using the wrong Products: No matter how wonderful a product is, if it isn’t meant for your skin type and current skin condition, it will not get you the desired results. Always analyze your skin’s current needs and buy products that will fulfill them.
Read about how to analyze your skin at home here.
- Cleansing: There are people who cleanse their skin excessively and those who don’t cleanse it enough. How much to cleanse and how frequently, which type of cleanser to use, should you use more than one, are questions that have to be judged according to individual needs. Factors to keep in mind are, how dry/oily your skin is, how much exposure it has to dust and pollution on a day to day basis and how strong or mild your cleanser is.
Read our detailed article on Cleansing here.
- Excessive exfoliating: A vast majority of the people are guilty of this. Skin exfoliation is a physiological process that the body does on its own. Because of certain skin conditions or the environmental dirt and pollution or lifestyle changes, this physiological process may become sluggish. Therefore we exfoliate our skin manually to help the process along. By over-exfoliating we are forcefully removing skin cells which are meant to protect the skin thereby disturbing the barrier and causing the skin to get dry, irritated and prone to hyper-pigmentation.
Read about the right way of exfoliation here.
- Inadequate sun protection: Irrespective of whether the sun is shining in the sky or not and at times even when you are indoors using sun protection is extremely important. UV radiation is a major cause of premature skin ageing. UV rays are able to penetrate the cloud cover so even if the sun isn’t beating down on you, it doesn’t mean absence of UV radiation. Some of the computer screens and certain types of fluorescent lights emit UV rays. So a sunscreen is a must use product.
How to choose a sunscreen? Read here.
- Using too many products: Keep in mind that the simpler your skincare routine is, the more likely you are to stick to it in the long term. Using multiple products that perform the same function isn’t going to make your skin so many times better. Instead it could harm your skin by being excessively harsh or could negate the effect of the other product. So plan your skincare routine our carefully and then select the product combination that will work best for you and synergistically with each other.
- Being unaware of products and ingredients: In this age of the internet when information is only a click or a tap away it is very easy to know what it is that you are putting on your skin. Spend a moment to look at the label on a product to know if it contains ingredients that are going to help your skin or if contains a bunch of empty fillers that don’t do much besides putting a dent in your bank account.
Read about how to read labels on skin care product here.
- Not applying the products in the right order: You have done your research and carefully bought products that are right for you. All of it will be ineffective if you aren’t applying the products in the correct order. The correct order of product application is CTMS- cleanser, toner, moisturizer, sunscreen. If you are using more than one product in any group for example a serum and a moisturizer then the order is to apply the lighter product first and then a heavier one.
- Following everything you see and hear: Your skin is not something that you should experiment with as you please. When you hear something about a product or a trend, do your own research about it. Look at the sources of the information and cross check if they are authentic. Always look for sources that are unbiased. Check and cross check everything. The golden rule to follow is, “when in doubt, don’t.” It is your responsibility to be aware of every single thing that you decide to put on your skin.
- Being Impatient for results: All good things take time. This is applicable to skincare as well. When you start a skincare routine, it takes patience and consistent effort to get results. It is a careful combination of testing each product, allowing time for the skin to get used to it, carefully monitoring any change that occurs during the time and tweaking the routine accordingly. Rushing it or having unrealistic expectations to begin with is a sure path to disappointment.
- Always following a fixed routine: We are all creatures of habit and following a set pattern is easy as after a while it requires no active thinking on our part. But when it comes to skin care it isn’t such a good idea. Our skin’s needs change with season, with any change in lifestyle, stress, environmental factors etc. Adapting to these changes and adjusting our skincare routine accordingly, ensures that our skin is healthy all year round.
And as the saying goes, as within, so without along with taking care to avoid the above mistakes, the food we eat, how much sleep we get and how healthy our overall lifestyle is plays a major role on how good our skin looks. Skin care products are most effective when the other internal parameters are taken care of.