Think you've got the whole skincare thing down-pat? So did we! But then we interviewed Dr Giulia D'Anna from Dermal Distinction and now we feel like we need to reconsider our entire existence.
See, we asked her to dish out some common things she wishes people would stop doing with their skin. And while we thought we'd be all like, "Omg, I can't believe people do that!", we feel...seen.
Listen to Mamamia's podcast for your face, You Beauty, where we find out everything a skin expert puts on hers. Post continues below.
You might want to take a seat for this one. It's going to hurt a little.
1. Using perfume on your neck or decolletage.
Well, shit. "I know that people do this in the movies, in the department stores and probably at home - but please, please stop," said Dr D'Anna. "Perfumes contain oil, which is what makes them smell so good. But putting oils on your neck, even if they are in perfume, is truly bad for your skin."
"Why, though?!" We hear you shout defensively. "Our skin is constantly exposed to harmful UV rays, and the oil in the perfume acts to increase the damage on your neck and decolletage. This can lead to skin thinning, damaged capillaries and pigmentation, or worse still, all three at once (called poikiloderma)."
So what's a gal to do? "Instead, put perfume only on non-exposed skin to avoid damage." Gotcha.
2. Not applying enough sunscreen.
So, you're applying sunscreen every morning because you're a smart little chicken and deserve a gold star, but are you applying enough? Ahhh!
"SPF30 sunscreen filters around 97 per cent of UVB rays," explains Dr D'Anna. "But this is dependent upon you using at least a quarter of a teaspoon on your face. Use half that amount, and this is only half the protection."
So, if you feel like you're not applying enough sunscreen - you're probably not. Slap it on. Just do it. Cover your face, neck, chest and ears. Cause when it comes to sun protection, more is more. Most brands will give you a rough guide on how much to use on the packaging, or better yet, they'll have handy droppers or pumps that'll give you an understanding of what the right amount looks like.
"Worse still, some people use none and that is no protection at all. Given that UV is responsible for most ageing and also for a number of skin cancers, do not miss this step." But this bit is irrelevant to us, because we all put it on every single day - rain, hail or shine. Right? RIGHT?
Don't make us come over and put it on for you.
3. Using coconut oil on your skin.
Coconut oil. In recent years it's been touted as the miracle fix for pretty much every beauty issue, ever. Celebs like Gwyneth Paltrow, Kourtney Kardashian and Emma Stone have all raved about its effectiveness for hydrating and nourishing their skin, and even removing makeup.
But you might wanna hold back on slathering it all over your face - because according to Dr D'Anna, coconut oil is not going to do your skin any favours. In fact, it'll probably cause it to break out.
"Coconut oil is very thick and blocks the pores of your skin, and when it does, welcome to breakout town. Instead, opt for ingredients like rosehip oil or almond oil. Both are beautiful and not prone to clogging up the skin," said Dr D'Anna.