5 everyday habits that are damaging your skin
With a beauty industry worth nearly £14 billion, it’s safe to say that us Brits certainly do like to take care of our appearance.
Whether it’s investing in expensive products, going for regular facials or practicing a good daily skincare routine, many of us put in a lot of effort to look radiant and youthful.
Despite our best intentions however, there are a number of everyday habits that could be damaging your skin without you even realising. Below we have compiled a list of five of the most common issues we see here at the salon and how avoiding them can really help to improve your skin.
The use of alcohol in skincare products remains an ongoing debate but there’s plenty of research to support the argument that when used as a main ingredient, it can actually dry, irritate and damage the skin.
To make matters more confusing, there are some alcohols which can be beneficial to the skin. As a general rule, stay away from products which have alcohol listed in the first six ingredients on the label and in particular, avoid ethanol or SD alcohol.
Fatty alcohols such as cetyl, stearyl and cetearyl provide a number of benefits and can be very effective at treating dry skin so when it comes to these ingredients, they don’t need to be avoided.
Unfortunately, drinking alcohol can also be problematic for the skin. Even just a couple of cocktails or glasses of wine can dehydrate our skin, making us more prone to wrinkles and dryness. If you do enjoy a few glasses of your favourite tipple, make sure you drink plenty of water to go with it so you’re replenishing some of the lost moisture.
Most of us are aware that there’s a strong link between our diet and our skin and have experienced a breakout after a sugar or greasy pizza binge. There are a number of surprising foods and drinks which when consumed regularly or in large quantities, can also irritate the skin however:
- Caffeine can cause dry skin and make wrinkles look more obvious so if you have a coffee addiction, make sure you drink plenty of water.
- Dairy can be bad news for anyone who suffers from acne because too much of it can cause inflammation.
- Acne also loves sugar and too much of it will cause redness and inflammation.
- Highly processed foods such as white bread, chips, soda and sweets all contain preservatives and additives. This makes your blood-sugar levels spike which causes your hormones to stimulate excessive oil production. This clogs the pores and ages the skin so try to keep these treats to a minimum.
Over-exfoliating your skin
Exfoliating is great for your skin and should be a regular part of your routine. It removes dead cells, smooths the skin, improves tone, minimises the appearance of pores, reduces the likelihood of breakouts and can even help to make wrinkles look less obvious.
Exfoliating too much or too aggressively however can strip the skin of the natural oils it needs to give you that healthy glow. Being too aggressive with your scrub can also damage the skin leaving it red, irritated and feeling tender.
Signs that you’re exfoliating too hard include:
- Dryness/dry patches
- Flaking skin
- Persisting stinging or burning
Make up itself shouldn’t cause any harm to your skin, it’s our bad habits which can be problematic.
Number one is of course, sleeping with your make up on. This can lead to clogged pores, bacterial infections, acne and it can even accelerate the ageing process. Our skin works hard when we sleep – this is the time when regeneration doubles, meaning it’s the most productive time for our skin’s health.
Dermalogica has just released a brand new product, Sound Sleep Cocoon. It works by supporting nocturnal activity which help to hydrate, brighten and revitalise the skin by morning. Pop into the salon to pick up your free sample of Sound Sleep Cocoon and receive 20% off if you decide to buy the full sized product.
Hot baths and showers
There’s nothing better than a long soak in the tub or a nice hot shower to get you going on a chilly winter morning. Sadly however, this habit could be wreaking havoc with your skin.
Long or very hot baths and showers strip away the outermost later of the epidermis, drying out the skin. Try to stick to warm rather than hot water and keep the time you spend bathing to a minimum. Applying a good body moisturiser will also help to prevent the skin drying out, especially in winter when we’re also exposed to central heating.
If you’re concerned about any skincare issues or would like help choosing the right products for your needs, please contact Cocoon Boutique and we will be more than happy to help.