Image: So you left the house without applying sunscreen again, hmm? (iStock)
You’re a grown adult, and what you to do your skin is entirely your business.
That said, if you want to keep your body’s biggest organ happy and healthy, there are a few naughty habits you should probably consider kicking. We’ve asked the experts to name the biggest culprits.
1. Using products that can strip the skin
According to Associate Professor Greg Goodman, a dermatologist from the Dermatology Institute of Victoria, excessive scrubbing, exfoliation and masks can undermine your skin’s natural defences.
“They will simply take away the defences of your skin surface,” Associate Professor Goodman says. Somewhat ironically, he adds, if you are prone to acne this could actually be making matters worse and make anti-acne creams and lotions too hard to use.
Instead, Goodman recommends you opt for cleansing milks and creamy cleansers, and look for products containing salicylic acid, which cleanses pores “in a gentler fashion”. (Post continues after gallery.)
2. Picking and squeezing your spots
Here’s the one we’re all guilty of: getting a little too handsy with those damn spots. Picking and squeezing seems like a good quick fix, but long-term you could really mess with your complexion.
"A spot is an inflamed lesion filled with bacteria. If you squeeze it you can spread the infection, cause damage to the very delicate skin and end up having not only more spots but possibly a scar too," explains Emma Hobson, Education Manager for the International Dermal Institute and Dermalogica.
To avoid, you know, scarring your lovely face, Hobson suggests using treatment products like overnight intensive spot-clearing treatments and daytime tinted treatment products. "They are placed directly onto a spot to heal them rapidly and effectively," she says.
3. Washing your face with traditional soap
What works for the body works for the face, right? Well, not exactly. This is one area of your skincare routine where corner-cutting could be harmful.
“The squeaky sound and feel one gets after stropping the oils from the skin is not a good thing for the skin to experience,” Associate Professor Goodman explains. A foaming cleanser is a better option, he adds, because it’ll cleanse your skin and remove dirt without stealing your natural oils.