10 Skin Myths That Are Just False
Like sweating out toxins (sorry)
You get a zit. You Google how to zap it. You get a weird rash on your cheek. You Web MD that shiz. Knowledge is power and it’s at our fingertips--true. But there is also a sea of misinformation out there, too. Here, we separate fact from fiction.
Myth: More water equals better skin
Truth: Ask any crystal-complexioned celeb her secret and she’ll likely say, “I drink lots of water.” In reality, water intake doesn't really help with skin hydration unless you’re already extremely dehydrated. So go ahead and drink the normal, suggested amount (eight cups a day). Just maybe also invest in a nice face cream.
Myth: You should let your face “breathe” once a week
Truth: Go barefaced if you want, but it’s not actually making your skin better. Makeup itself doesn’t make your skin worse. Improper cleansing, however, does. To get a really good clean, start with a cleansing oil to melt off all traces of makeup and debris. Then follow up with a gentle cleanser to tackle anything left over.
Myth: Exfoliate regularly for clearer skin
Truth: Over-exfoliating can actually cause inflammation. Limit skin sloughing to two (max three) times a week. Want better results? Make sure that you’re using the right type of exfoliator. If you have normal to oily skin, opt for a physical exfoliant (a cleansing brush or scrub); if you have sensitive or acne-prone skin, reach for a chemical one (i.e., something with glycolic or lactic acid).
Myth: You can shrink your pores with proper care
Truth: Pore size is mostly determined by genetics, and they do not open, close, get bigger or (sigh) smaller. They do appear larger if they’re clogged. See above re: proper cleansing and exfoliation to keep yours in the clear.
Myth: Sweat out toxins for better skin
Truth: Excessive exercise doesn’t “clear out the toxins” as well as your liver and kidneys do. After all, sweat is 99 percent water and zero percent carbs or preservatives. This doesn’t mean that your cardio sesh doesn’t have skin benefits. (It boosts circulation, lowers stress and helps you sleep--all crucial to getting your glow on.) It just means that your Bikram yoga class isn’t going to cure all of your sins.
Myth: Botox can prevent wrinkles from forming later
Truth: Though injectables like Botox can reduce your chances of developing future lines, prematurely injecting ones that haven’t even formed yet could cause a disfiguring appearance. So if want a little, ahem, assistance, hold off until those pesky signs of aging begin to show. In the meantime, keep up with that SPF.
Myth: Natural beauty products are less irritating
Truth: While natural products might not have any aggressive chemicals, they do contain essential oils--like clove, peppermint, ginger, cinnamon and tea tree--that can trigger allergic reactions in some people. To err on the safe side, always look for the highest quality ingredients possible and do a patch test before slathering the product all over your face.
Myth: Your skin gets used to products
Truth: It’s not so much that your skin gets used to the products but rather that your skin has different needs depending on internal and external factors (like the weather or a change in hormones). Feeling drier than usual? Swap your lighter moisturizer for a richer cream.
Myth: Cold weather dries out your skin
Truth: It’s actually the indoor heating that’s drying you out. Sitting by that glorious vent feels nice (and necessary) this time of year, but it’s also sucking out all of the moisture from the air--and your face. No need to swear off heaters, though. Just get yourself a humidifier (maybe with some peppermint oil) and let it do its thing while you sleep.
Myth: You’re addicted to lip balm
Truth: Not quite. You carry it around with you everywhere and you can’t imagine life without it. So, are you dependent? Maybe emotionally. (We get it.) Lip balms have emollients that create a barrier to keep lips hydrated. This barrier helps prevent dryness caused by the elements, so, no, it’s not the balm that’s drying you out. To get the most balm for your buck, reach for formulas that are more viscous--not waxy--so they penetrate better.