10 Regular Habits and Mistakes that are Harming your Skin
We spend so much time and energy taking care of our skin and hair and develop a routine or regimen gradually. Just as we have a specific pattern of brushing our teeth in a particular way or style, with time our skin care also adapts to our style and motion of the routine and we tend to follow that same pattern to apply our products on a daily basis. But going wrong during such habituated tasks can prove to be very harmful for the health of our skin. Here is a list of 10 habits or mistakes we might be making that have adverse effects on skin.
Stretching your eyelid to apply eye liner
This is one of the most common and dangerous habits for your eyes. So many of us have a habit of stretching the eyelid to apply eye liner perfectly because it makes the application so much easier. But this is something that is an open invitation to crow’s feet, fine lines and wrinkles around the eye area.
There is nothing wrong with ageing. It is a natural process and the sooner we come to terms with this fact, the better it is for us. We can always try to slow down the ageing process by eating good food, drinking enough water and following a good skin care routine. But should we be speeding up that process and look older than what we really are? That doesn’t seem like a good idea. And what really baffles me is that I have seen “make up experts” do this!
The skin on the face is much more delicate and thinner than the skin on the rest of the body. And the eye area has the thinnest skin on our face! Skin has a property called Elasticity. So what happens when you stretch a rubber band a couple of times? It loses its elasticity and increases in size. If your eye lid should lose its elasticity, then you can kiss your eye shadows goodbye because you will not have an even, smooth surface to apply them on! Do you see the point? The key to perfecting the eyeliner is to practice! Practice as much as you can and someday you will get it right! Use scotch tape as a guide if required but please, no more stretching, no more shortcuts!
Tugging at your skin while applying moisturizer or foundation.
I have seen so many women apply their moisturizer on their face with the equal amount of force they would use to scrub the toilet! I don’t want to sound rude but this is a very stupid mistake. All that tugging and stretching will only lead to early wrinkles, loose and saggy skin. Always apply your moisturizer with a light touch and against the force of gravity using upward strokes and small circles.
Vigorously rubbing make up brushes against your face
Apart from leaving behind unappealing streaks and brush marks on your foundation, dragging your brushes vigorously on your face leads to the obvious ageing issue. But the problem at hand here is that if you apply your foundation too hard, then it will get absorbed deep into your skin past the primer and moisturizer barrier you created earlier. Foundation and similar make up products contain plenty of chemicals including mica and talc and these are not good for your skin in the long run. When chemicals like these enter deep into your skin, issues like dark spots, patches, acne, early ageing and uneven skin tone are born. Instead, use light pressure and use tools like a stippling brushes, soft blending sponges or best of all, your fingers to lightly blend in the foundation on your skin. Remember, foundation is not supposed to be massaged on to your skin. Use small dabbing strokes to apply it evenly on your face. Using your ring finger really helps as it exerts the least amount of pressure on the skin.
Using dirty Make up brushes/sponges and leaving them uncovered.
Make up brushes on a brush stand on your make up table always look pretty but leaving them uncovered is not a good idea. There are millions of free radicals, pollutants, germs, pollen, dust particles etc floating around you as we speak but they are invisible to the naked eye. (You can however stare at the headlights of a car at night or sun rays in the morning to see these particles in the light beams) Overtime they collect on your brushes and then when you dip your brushes into your cosmetics, not only are you contaminating the products, but those very microscopic shenanigans are also getting transferred to your skin which may later cause acne, infections and lead to major skin issues. This whole paragraph might look like it has been written by someone with OCD but the world we live in today isn’t as pollution free as it used to be. So keep your brushes in a clean, closed container.
Clean your brushes regularly and do not use dirty make up brushes or sponges because this will lead to infections, acne, pimple etc.
Waxing has been considered as one of the safest methods of hair removal since centuries. This temporary method not only removes hair from the roots but also exfoliates the skin and helps remove tan. Waxing also is tough on the skin. So it should not be done more than once a month. All that pulling and tugging, if done often will lead your skin to sag and prone to wrinkles. Shaving is another safe, easy and painless method of hair removal which is sadly shrouded in myths and rumors. I have been using razors to remove unwanted hair since I was a teenager and a decade later, my skin has never been better than what it is now! So make sure to keep a check on the number of times you go the salon for waxing.
Not Removing ALL traces of make up before going to bed
Even after washing your face thoroughly, traces of mascara, eyeliner or kohl can be visibly left behind. Momentarily that might just make you feel that you’re looking really pretty just before going to bed but that is going to do you a humongous amount of harm. Going to bed with teeny-tiny amounts of dark pigments around your eyes will give your dark circles overtime, as those dark pigments will get eight to ten undisturbed hours to reach the deepest layers of your skin and just sit there. So in case you are wondering why you have dark circles despite eating right, drinking enough water, getting plenty of sleep and having nothing to stress about, this might be your answer. All you need to do in order to avoid this is to dip a cotton swab or bud in some make remover and clean out your lash lines and corners of your eyes before you retire for the night.
- Using waterproof mascara regularly.
This I speak out of a very recent experience. I wear mascara almost every time I step out and also change it every three months. So in the beginning of March this year I purchased a waterproof mascara as it was getting too hot and I thought that would be convenient. Usually I just use a good face wash to remove all traces of light make up and go to bed but every time I applied the waterproof mascara, just washing wasn’t enough. I had to use either a make up remover or baby oil to get rid of it and my lashes would still feel clumpy the next morning. within two months I also noticed that my lashes were looking thinner and were falling out. Alarmed, I stopped using the waterproof mascara, because all that rubbing the make up remover and trying to remove the tough, clumpy formula was taking a toll on my eye lashes. The water resistant formula of the mascara tends to stick on to your eyelashes and is pretty difficult to remove. So do not use a water proof mascara very regularly.
- Using old, expired cosmetics
Cosmetics, make up products and toiletries can be very expensive. Some of us love collecting and hoarding make up which is why it becomes even more difficult to detach from your collection and de-clutter or throw away old products once in a while. But it is essential you do so. From mere acne breakouts to major infections and even skin cancer, anything can happen if you use expired cosmetics. Sometimes, detachment is good.
I recently read an interesting post about the harmful effects of using expired make up. You can read it here.
Not brushing your hair enough
Ever wondered why you have those ugly little pimples on you forehead that just wont go away? You are probably not brushing your hair enough.
Just like our skin, our scalp needs to be exfoliated as well. And that exfoliation comes from brushing your hair at least twice a day. When you don’t brush your hair regularly, the excess skin cells shed by the scalp are left behind. And as Sebum, the naturally secreted oil from our hair, gathers around these cells, they fail to find a way out of your head and begin to collect in small mounds. Sometimes they will fall over on to your face and cause a bumpy forehead, acne, pimples, itchy eyes and an oily face. Dandruff has been a known reason for acne for decades now. Use a good paddle brush and brush through hair at least twice a day. Brushing also improves blood circulation under your scalp thus providing your hair with an ample supply of nutrition which eventually improves the health and quality of your hair.
Popping blackheads and pimples
Oh where do I even begin on this one?!
The only reason why I have to spend a very hurtful amount of money regularly on pore minimizing primers is because I had the very wrong habit of popping blackheads. However gross it may sound to you, I actually enjoyed seeing that white wormy stuff ooze out from the bridge of my nose as I pinched it with two fingers standing close to a mirror.. Yeah it was one of those phases of my life, don’t judge me! I was left behind with countless huge pores on my nose and the areas around it. Popping a couple of stubborn zits has led to scarring too and I regret nothing more than I regret doing this to myself. It is easy to get rid of acne and blackheads but trust me the scars left behind never really fill.
Keep your skin clean, maintain a good personal hygiene regimen, Follow the three steps of CTM – Cleansing, Toning and Moisturizing regularly and hopefully you will not have to deal with these problems in the first place!