How to improve your skincare routine
If changing your diet, going for monthly facials and experimenting with all kinds of products still leave you with the same old problems, perhaps you’re looking in the wrong places for your skincare solution.
Prevention is better than cure and there are plenty of things we do that harm our skin on a day-to-day basis. This eventually leads to things like breakouts, blackheads and dryness that we end up having to firefight. Here are 7 common habits you might be guilty of doing, and how you can improve your skincare routine:
1. Picking the window seat on the plane
Singaporeans are well-versed with travelling and we all know that there’s no better seat on a plane than the window seat. But think again before opting for this prime spot as it increases your exposure to UV rays when you are flying in the day.
Up in the air, we are much closer to the ozone layer, increasing our exposure to UVA rays – which are absorbed into the dermis layer of the skin and causes skin damage and wrinkles. These UVA rays aren’t blocked by the plane’s windows and the more exposed to sunlight you are, the more it damages the skin.
In fact, UVA reaches you even if you are indoors on ground-level as well, so make sure to always wear broad-spectrum sunblock whether you’re outdoors, in office or on a plane.
2. Washing out your cleanser too quickly
We all know the drill. Wash your face twice a day – after waking up and before you head to bed. If you’ve ever wondered how long exactly to wash it for though, here’s the answer: 1 minute. Any less and you might not be giving your cleanser enough time to do its job. Any more, and you might dry out your skin. Some coin this as the 60-second rule, the nice balance between both.
3. Taking super long hot showers
Shiok is what most of us would describe a soothing, long hot shower. But dermatologists will probably describe it as “bad for your skin.” Warm to hot water strips away the skin’s natural oils, so if you’d like to have your skin’s quality at its finest, take quicker showers with cold or lukewarm water instead.
4. Rubbing your face too hard with cotton pads and wipes
After a long day, there’s nothing more satisfying than kneading out all the day-end gunk off your pores with a handy cotton pad or makeup-remover wipe. But for skin as smooth as a baby’s, you gotta treat your skin like a baby too. It’s time to avoid all aggressive rubbing, as it can damage the skin.
Image adapted from: TheSmartLocal
If you’re worried about having makeup residue in your pores, you can do 2 or more rounds of wiping with gentle hand motions using thoroughly soaked cotton pads to reduce the friction on your face. Alternatively, switch to using an oil cleanser.
5. Overloading with skincare
On one hand, there’s the problem of insufficient skin care, and on the other, there’s product overload. Less is more, and if you’re piling your skin with layers upon layers of skin care, it’s time to double back and reevaluate if you really should be doing so.
A particular mistake many make is mixing products with active ingredients, which are more powerful than your average skincare. Vitamin Cs + BHAsand glycolic acid + salicylic acid are as bad a mix as putting Tom with Jerry. The former combination leads to dry skin and the latter might cause skin irritation.
Image credit: The Beauty Insider
Other things to avoid overusing are mud masks and facial scrub as they can dry and damage the skin.
6. Sleeping on your side
You snooze sideways, you lose – it’s best to sleep on your back rather than on your side or stomach as the pressure of your face on the pillow can cause wrinkles over time. Sleeping cheek-to-pillow also increases the risk of getting acne, thanks to the dirt and oil that transfers from face-pillow through the night.
If you’re naturally a side sleeper, use a silk pillowcase rather than a cotton one as it’s softer on the face, but do make sure to wash it at least once a week to keep it nice and clean.
7. Leaving micellar water on your face
Regular makeup-users might be familiar with micellar water, a clear and non-oily make-up remover that cleanses your face too. But a lazy habit that resultantly forms among lazy peeps, myself included, is not rinsing your face after. Oops.
Although not a particularly terrible habit, as micellar water is formulated to be gentle on the skin, the surfactants left behind can reduce the absorption of the next few steps of your skincare routine if unrinsed.
Keep your skin moisturised with Bio-Oil
There are many skin care mistakes to avoid in our daily life, but if there is just one rule you need to follow, it’s consistent moisturising. Bad habits harm our skin, and more often than not, this leads to the dreaded dehydrated skin that even oily-skinned friends out there are not spared from.
To replenish your skin’s moisture, consider using an oil-based treatment such as Bio-Oil Dry Skin Gel which has higher moisturising properties than water or cream-based variants.
Perfect for those with dehydrated skin, the gel is packed with ingredients like shea butter, hyaluronic acid and glycerin which helps to soothe the skin and retain moisture. It’s also safe for those with sensitive skin and can be used on both the body and face, as it doesn’t block pores.
We tested this product out for ourselves and were surprised to find that the rich jelly-like texture leaves a non-greasy finish despite being predominantly oil-based. It took about a minute to be fully absorbed, leaving the skin supple and nourished, placing it on the pedestal as an overnight gel to reach for daily.
A fingertip-sized dollop is substantial enough to be generously spread across the forearm so even their smallest 50ML bottle should be able to last you quite some time. Retailing from just $8.90, this is a handy tub is an affordable go-to to remedy skin care mistakes, and keep dry skin at bay.
This post was brought to you by Bio-Oil
Photography by Joshua Ryan