Good ol’ advice. Can be your best or your worst friend. We’re surrounded by articles of skincare advice, but not all of them may be filled with solid, decent, helpful information. So, I asked you guys over on my Instagram stories “what’s the worst skincare advice you’ve been told?” and my inbox was full of responses. Some golden ones we’ve all done in the efforts to have flawless skin, some which made me full on cringe out, and lastly, some ones that I’m still constantly seeing people do, time and time again.
Armed with a handful of the answers, I wanted to share them here and explain a little about why this advice may not be the most legit.
“Use St. Ives Scrub” – @leahpoulter
We should all by now know how bad it is to use ground up shells in our facial exfoliators – like the St. Ives Apricot Scrub.
The reason why so many people are ditching products containing shells is because when the shells are ground up, they’re left with jagged, rough edges. When these are scrubbed on, they’re leaving micro tears, damaging our skin and leading to infection. Ouch.
St. Ives have even been taken to court over how their scrub is NOT suitable or safe to use on your skin. Best to avoid this one, folks!
“To Stop Washing My Face For A Week To Help With Breakouts” – @simpleserenityazra | simpleserenity.wordpress.com
As much as I love cleansing my skin, this one may actually be party true…
Some people may find that stopping the use of cleansers can help their skin. This is because they may be using the wrong type of cleanser for their skin, over washing (which causes dehydrated skin), or simply not washing the cleanser off properly without knowing it. Also, many people believe that unless you have visible dirt or have been sweating, washing your face with just water should be enough.
I’d suggest looking for a cleanser thats suited for your skin type. If you’re finding that it’s drying out your skin, stick to double cleansing in the evening and only washing your face with water in the mornings.
“Don’t Moisturise Oily Skin” – @kelly.brown__
Repeat after me. Every. Skin. Type. Needs. Moisturiser. Yes, even the oiliest of skins.
Skipping out on daily moisturising is only going to dehydrate your skin. When your skin is dehydrated, it naturally produces more oils to try and compensate for your dry skin. Then, when your skin is working overtime to try and rehydrate your skin by creating oils, your skin is more likely to break out.
Keep an eye out for moisturiser containing hyaluronic acid for a real hydration boost.
Shop moisturisers for oily skin
“Use Anti-Acne Ingredients In Every Product You Use” – @suzettexd
When you have acne, it only makes sense to use multiple ‘anti-acne’ products at once, right?
Actually, a lot of acne fighting ingredients in products are drying to the skin and can sometimes cause unwanted irritation. Using multiple products with these ingredients in is going to strip your skin, leaving your skin tight, dry, and will start producing more oils to compensate.
Stick to using one or two products designed for acne, and concentrate your other products on hydrating and replenishing the skin.
“If It Burns, It’s Working” – @leahpoulter
Ahh – the good old classic one. I can’t remember how many times I’ve told myself this after applying a spot treatment or an acne fighting mask.
Some products do induce a light tingling sensation (like The Ordinary AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution), but if it burns, wash it off with clean, lukewarm water and throw the product away.
“Stop Eating Dairy” – @la.vie.en.luxe | la-vie-en-luxe.com
I feel like this is quiet a controversial topic – does acne and diet have any links?
I know so many people who constantly eat unhealthy, fatty, greasy foods and still have the most beautiful skin around. However, if you’re anything like me, even looking at a cheese board is enough to set off a breakout.
Whilst there are many studies to suggest that what you eat will effect your skin, there are also many people who claim that their diet doesn’t play a part.
If you’re unsure if your eating habits are the cause of your breakouts, try cutting out acne causing foods for a few weeks and see how your skin reacts.
“Going Out In The Sun Without SPF Will Toughen Up Your Skin and Heal Scars” – @lottiegeorgina
I can’t begin to tell you how many times I’d sunbathe and keep my face in direct sunlight, without any SPF, just because I thought this one was true.
Obviously we all know how sun exposure without protection can lead to skin cancer (which should be enough to put you off burning to a crisp), but it’s also going to possibly leave you with post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH).
PIH is often called acne scars, and they’re the red/brown marks that stay put on your skin for months after having acne, a burn, or some kind of skin trauma.
Long story short, avoid the possibility of having sun burn, skin cancer and PIH by wearing daily SPF (yes, even when it’s cloudy).
Shop facial SPF
“Use Coconut Oil On Your Face” – @kelly.brown__
One of my first ever blog posts (now deleted) was about coconut oil and the effects it has on skin.
Many people use coconut oil, all for different purposes. A body moisturiser, an eye makeup remover, a skin cleanser, a hair mask and even as tooth paste, but the one thing I seem time and time again is warnings about using this on your face.
Coconut oil is extremely comedogenic. Instead of soaking into the skin, coconut oil sits on the top, blocking your pores which can end up leaving you with a nasty breakout.
“Use A Mens Shaving Balm As A Makeup Primer” – @emmasjots
After seeing so many people hyping about the Nivea Men Post Shave Balm as a primer, I did actually buy myself a bottle of the stuff too. I don’t think I ever even used the stuff, because after buying it, I started to see reviews from people saying how this stuff wrecked havoc on their skin.
I’ve had a look on cosDNA.com at the ingredients, and whilst there are some good ingredients in it (like Glycerin and Chamomile Extract), theres also a lot of fragrance and ingredients that are likely to cause acne.
If you’re after something that’s cheap, but going to prolong the life of your makeup, have a look at these highly rated drugstore primers.
Shop drugstore primers
“Instead Of Wearing SPF, Just Wear A Foundation That Has SPF In” – @beautylymin | www.beautylymin.com
A few years back, I was definitely made to believe this one.
The amount of times I’ve been glad to see SPF in foundations in pretty stupid now I think of it. Truth to be told, even if your foundation says it had SPF in, it’s most likely going to be doing next to nothing in sun protection ways.
Why? Simply because you never apply enough foundation for it actually to give you enough protection. When you’re applying SPF on its own, you’d put on a pretty decent layer. Whereas when you use it in another product, you’re not going to be putting on enough to give you substantial sun block.
Facial SPF can be picked up super cheap, so there isn’t an excuse for skipping out on this step.
“You Need Every Skin Product Available” – @thatgingegirl_ | thatgingegirl
I have to say I think Instagram has a huge part to play in this one. The amount of #SkincareShelfies that pop up on my feed daily is enough to make anyone want to dive out to their local Boots and empty the shelves.
It can also be quite difficult to know what products are essential to have, and what products you may be able to miss out on.
If you’re looking to build a routine the essential products you’ll need is a cleanser, a moisturiser and an SPF. Once you’ve got those three products nailed down, then start to look into toners, serums, acids etc. Just remember to introduce new products one at a time and slowly.
“It’s Fine To Use An Abrasive Scrub When You Have Sensitive Skin” – @hannahaustyn | hannahaustyn.com
The thought of how much irritation this would cause literally makes me cringe.
If you feel like your skin needs exfoliating and you have sensitive skin, stick to extremely gentle scrubs with smaller particles in, or slowly introduce a chemical exfoliant to your routine.
If you’re wanting to go down the chemical exfoliant route, try using Lactic Acid. Lactic Acid works in a similar way to Glycolic, but is a little more gentle.
Just remember to only use once a week at first, and then adjust depending on how your skin reacts.
“Exfoliate Everyday” – @emilyybecca | emilybecca.com
Exfoliation should only be done a maximum of three times a week. Anymore than that is going to leave your skin irritated, blotchy and is going to make your skin go into overdrive by creating oils, which we all know can lead to acne.
After exfoliating, make sure you’re applying a serum which is going to be able to penetrate your skin the best it can now, and then follow it up with a moisturiser.
What’s the worst worst skincare advice you’ve been told?
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