Over the years whilst being in the beauty industry as a Beauty Therapist, I have heard a lot of skincare myths that a lot of people genuinely think are true (I was one of them before!). Since I started being around skincare daily, I have found that a lot of these myths are not true and are just misconceptions.
In this post, I’ll be sharing with you 5 common skincare misconceptions that I’ve learnt over the years, which are handy for anyone to know!
1. Pores on the skin can open and close
I know we have all heard this one before, that steaming your face can cause your pores to open, but they can’t – they actually just dilate and stretch. Pores are natural openings on the skin that contain hair follicles and sebaceous glands underneath; These glands produce sebum which can get clogged up if it works in overdrive. Steam cannot ‘open’ the pores on the skin like a door, but it can cause excess pore build-up to loosen and rise the surface of the skin. Steaming the face can be helpful if you have clogged skin, but be wary when steaming as it can cause other skincare concerns like rosacea.
2. The higher SPF number the better
This misconception is probably one of the most common that I’ve heard and a lot of people believe this is true. SPF is what protects the skin from UV rays and is something we should be wearing every-single-day. But some people think that SPF 50 gives the skin the best protection and that they only need to apply it once again, which is another misconception and this can be highly damaging to the skin. Did you know that SPF 50 only gives the skin a little bit more protection than SPF 15 does? For example, SPF 40 only has 1% more protection than SPF 30; This means that you can wear an SPF 15 and be fully protected all day, but would need to reapply it every 2 hours!
3. Natural is always better
I know a lot of you may be surprised by this one and I was too when I first learnt about it; natural products aren’t always better. Many natural ingredients that are found in skincare can cause increased skin sensitivity over time while using the product. Some can also be too harsh or abrasive on the skin, just like some traditional scrubs and exfoliators. Ingredients such as citrus-based ingredients can worsen the negative effects that the sun has on the skin, which can cause a lot of sensitivity. There are natural ingredients that are good for the skin, but natural doesn’t always mean better.
4. Oils shouldn’t be used on oily skin
I used to believe this misconception because I have oily skin and I would think that applying an oil product onto my oily skin could encourage more breakouts, but this isn’t entirely true. Oil cuts through oil, which makes oil cleansers perfect for people with oily skin because it can breakdown all of the pollutants on the face and will thoroughly cleanse. A lot of people with oily skin will often use cleansers that can strip the skin, causing more harm than good in the long term; the skin will then produce more sebum, which can cause more breakouts, so using oil can prevent breakouts if it’s used right. There are oils out there that aren’t suited to oily skin but some can regulate the skins sebum production and restore balance to the skin and also help to keep the skin strong and less vulnerable.
5. Strong and abrasive exfoliators are good for the skin
Before I trained to become a beauty therapist, I thought that abrasive scrubs and exfoliating the skin roughly would successfully remove any dead skin cells and leave the skin feeling smooth when actually, the opposite can happen; Scrubbing too hard or using abrasive products can remove protective oils from the skin, that will in turn cause more sensitivity. Abrasive products like exfoliators can also cause micro-tears to the skin, which will further irritate, but can also cause premature ageing. That’s why I would recommend using chemical exfoliators to effectively exfoliate and buff away dead skin cells without the need for physical exfoliators.
In your skincare journey, you will discover different tips and tricks that work for your skin and some may not. These misconceptions are to help you find your way to the perfect skincare routine!