Common Skincare Mistakes
September 22, 2022
You are here, reading this. You've probably made great effort to master a proper skincare routine that works for you ... or so you think. The truth is, you might be unintentionally implementing some bad habits into your routine — even if you seemingly have all the right skincare products. Making skincare mistakes can be detrimental to skin health. It can cause accelerated aging and damage to skin barrier. Here are a few pointers to start:
1. Using vitamin C and retinol together. These are both holy grails of skincare and should be used by everyone. But Vitamin C is to be used in the morning. Retinol is to be used in the evening (since the skin does a lot of repairing while we sleep at night). When C and retinol are used together, the vitamin C will chemically deactivate retinol, making it ineffective. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant to protect the skin during the day. And retinol is a repariative element for the skin when our skin does all the damage control while we sleep at night. There should be no reason they are used together.
2. Less is more. An effective and proper skincare regimen should be very simple. Unfortunately a lot of retail companies (and unfortunately, even some physicians) just want to sell products and skus. There is never a need for a 10-product regimen in the morning and another 10-product regimen at
night. Unless you have been instructed to layer actives on top of actives together by a dermatologist or a dermal specialist, you risk diluting or even negating the effectiveness of each product. Stick with the Vivre Mantra of "cleanse, prep, treat and seal" and of course, using products that are medical grade, that changes the biology of the skin, not just give you topical instant gratification. If they have a regimen sticking to those rules, you are in good hands.
3. Over-exfoliating / washing - especially for those with acne or oily skin. They may tend to over exfoliate with scrubs, or wash their faces more than twice a day in effort to keep clean or keep their faces feeling oil free. Over-exfoliation can lead to redness, irritation, and may leave the skin in worse condition than what you started with. In our founder & CEO, Mina's clinic, she has seen patients whose skin barriers are damaged due to excess over-exfoliating. That takes time to repair and having a healthy skin barrier is essential to good skin health. The skin barrier protects everything and is also the layer that prevents trans epidermal water loss. For oily skins, if you over wash your face, your skin may actually begin to produce more oils thinking it is lacking that protective sebum. Keep washing to no more than twice a day. For those looking to find a good balance on exfoliating, take a look at our previous post about exfoliation.
4. This one sounds cliche, but sunscreen everyday! Many millennials and Gen Xers spent their childhoods with nary a sunscreen bottle in sight. Some of us went to the beach armed with nothing but a bottle of baby oil ... But we know that you know better now. Do not get lazy about SPF. Many do not use sunscreens daily and for those that do, some think that just because there is sunscreen built-in their foundations would suffice. It is not enough, you will always need a good physical sunscreen every morning to end your morning routine. If you care about anti-aging, know that the UV rays (even when it is raining) will accelerate the aging process, wrinkles and hyperpigmentation. And of course, skin cancer is the most common and potentially fatal cancers in the US. Why risk health?
Secondary to that, is apply too little sunscreen is another common mistake often seen. It has been proven that sun is one of the greatest contributors to aging and damaged skin. Rule of thumb is that about .4oz of sunscreen should be applied to your face. Now no one is walking around with a measuring spoon ... to make life easier ... use the "Two Finger Rule": Two strips of sunscreen should be squeezed from the tip to the base of the index and middle fingers and that is the amount that should be applied to your face. And unless you are wearing a turtleneck around all day, don't forget your neck!