4 common skin sins to avoid

We all make mistakes, and when it comes to personal care such as skin care, you could potentially be damaging your skin without even realizing it. Despite your good intentions, you may be doing more harm than good. Continue reading to find out what skin care practices you may be doing that actually yield results that are the opposite of what you intended.

Using the wrong facial cleanser

Sometimes half the problem with our skin issues are simply due to using the wrong facial cleanser. For instance, if you have dry skin, using a daily foaming cleanser would be disastrous! Foaming facial washes are designed for people with oily skin.

You may choose this particular cleanser because it makes your skin feel 'extra clean' due to the tight feeling you get after using it. But this is over-stripping your skin of natural oils. The result? Your skin over-compensates by producing more oil than it really needs. It leads to clogged pores and breakouts.

Therefore, it is important to know your skin type- whether you're oily, combination or dry. Once you know your skin type, you can then select an appropriate facial cleanser for you.

• Oily: This one is pretty self-explanatory. If you have excess oil all over your skin, then you probably have oily skin.
• Combination: This is a combination of dry and oily skin. So, if your T-zone (forehead, nose, and chin) are oily and your cheeks are dry, your skin type is combination.
• Dry: If your skin is flaky, rough and drinks up the moisturizer, you have dry skin.
• Sensitive: Easily irritated skin—especially when you interact with new products or environments—is an indicator of sensitive skin.
• Normal: It could be described as having a balance of moisture, small pores, and few visible concerns. Basically, it’s what you imagine healthy skin looking like.

Consult with a Licensed Esthetician at a local spa for a skin analysis and she (or he) will recommend the right home care products for you.

Over or Under-Exfoliating

It is widely common to either over-exfoliate or under-exfoliate. For instance, the electronic cleansing brushes are all the rage now and they do in fact contribute to a deeper clean, which is great. However, most people use cleansing brushes every day (yikes) and over-exfoliate the skin and compromise the moisture and lipid barrier. It is best to use it no more than three times a week if your skin is on the oily side, or no more than twice a week if your skin leans toward dry.

On the other hand, a lack of exfoliation can lead to a couple of things: bumpy, congested skin or dry, rough skin. When one neglects to exfoliate, the dead surface cells can accumulate, leading to dry, dull skin. This dead skin cell build-up can create somewhat of a barrier on the skin, which won't allow proper skincare product penetration.

You can incorporate an at-home microdermabrasion in your skincare routine to make sure you are getting an even exfoliation. You can use it 1 to 3 times per week, depending on how well your skin can tolerate it. Avoid using facial scrubs with micro beads because those create micro tears in your skin that can lead to uneven skin tone and sometimes, skin infection.

Neglecting to Wear Sunscreen

This mistake leads to premature aging and wrinkling. Many people wrongly assume that sunscreen is only required when basking out in the sun on a hot summer day.

The truth is, the Ultra Violet rays are present all year round- even on overcast days when you can't see the sun- therefore it is crucial to wear a broad spectrum sunscreen all year round to prevent signs of aging (which is by the way primarily caused by the sun). SPF 30 should be enough but make sure you re-apply as needed.

Skipping a Moisturizer

This 'skin sin' is so common, that it makes Estheticians want to weep (for those who are doing such a disservice to their skin!). We find that the vast majority of people who skip using a moisturizer are those who have oily and/or acne-prone skin and they are literally terrified that using a moisturizer will exacerbate oil and breakouts.

We understand the fear, but not moisturizing the skin will actually do exactly what they are trying to run away from: the skin will become even oilier since the skin's oil glands will kick into overdrive and produce more oil to compensate for a lack of moisture. And when there is more oil, that's when breakouts occur. See my friends, oil and moisture are two entirely different things. Moisture is water and oil is oil. Our skin is like fish and it NEEDS moisture (water) for survival.

If you have oily and/or acne-prone skin, choose an oil-free moisturizer. That way you're getting the proper hydration your skin needs without compromising anything.