Skin is pretty incredible. It covers our entire body, acts as a protective barrier and even works to regenerate itself when we’ve pushed it a little too hard. As amazing as it is, skin can only put up with so much abuse, and our daily habits may be destroying it.
Unfortunately, most of us don’t even realize that we are committing these crimes against our skin so we continue to damage it day after day. While you may not be able to stop time from aging your skin, you can take control of your habits and prevent bad habits from adding years to it. Ready to face your habits and improve the quality of your skin? Here are 10 of the most common habits that are destroying your skin.
#1 – You Never Moisturize
Moisturizing daily is important for your skin; especially after you shower. Many of our favorite body washes and scrubs contain skin-drying ingredients, so infusing your skin with post-shower hydration is essential. The more moisturized your skin is, the younger and firmer it will appear.
Not all moisturizers are made the same, just like your skin. For example, the skin on your face, especially around your eyes, is incredibly sensitive and much thinner than the skin on your body. For this reason, you will likely want a nice anti-aging facial moisturizer and a separate one for your body.
#2 – You Don’t Remove Your Makeup Before Bed
This is a particularly heinous skin offense. It is detrimental to not only our skin but your eyes. Sleeping with makeup on creates a breeding ground for acne-causing bacteria, not to mention potential eye infections. It also means you are transferring this bacteria to your pillows, so the next time you sleep on them with a clean face you’ll be reinfecting yourself.
Always wash your makeup off before hitting the hay. Use a mild facial cleanser designed for your particular skin type and pat your skin dry with a clean face towel. Don’t forget to follow it up by moisturizing.
#3 – You Forget to Shower After Exercising
After an invigorating workout, your gym gear is going to be nice and sweaty. You would think that removing it would be our first priority, but shockingly, many of us put off showering for hours. The time we sit and stew in our sweaty gear gives our skin time to let sweat trap dirt and bacteria in our pores which can lead to acne breakouts, rashes, and body odor. All in all, not a great combination.
Our suggestion is to shower within 30 minutes following your workout. If you are prone to blemish breakouts on your body then we recommend Exposed Body Acne Treatment. It’s gentle on sensitive skin, but strong enough to destroy acne-causing bacteria.
#4 – You Rarely Exfoliate
Exfoliation may sound fancy and expensive, but it doesn’t have to be. Furthermore, your skin needs it. Regular exfoliation removes dead skin cells that may be giving you a dull, sullen appearance. It also helps promote cellular turnover for healthier skin.
If you are up for a little DIY, then something as simple as baking soda and water can be an effective exfoliant. A textured face cloth can also do the trick if you’re on a tight budget. Just be sure not to over exfoliate. Do not rub your skin raw and red, and repeat 3-4 times weekly max.
#5 – You Can’t Stop Touching Your Face
Hands off! Think of how much bacteria your hands come in contact each day. Now picture all that bacteria transferring to your face each time you swipe your bangs from your forehead, rub your eyes in exhaustion or rest your chin on your palm.
Now that we’ve pointed it out for you, you will likely be more aware of how frequently you touch your face. Do you best to keep your hands off your face and if you must touch it, wash them with an antibacterial hand soap first.
#6 – You Use Hand Drying Products
Like I just said, we use our hands a lot. From drying hand soaps to rough dish soaps, our hands are constantly being sucked for moisture. Trade in your harsh products for ones that include moisturizers.
Don’t be afraid to slather on the moisturizer before going to bed each night too, or even using moisturizing mitts to lock in moisture for a deeply hydrating hand mask.
#7 – You Smoke
It’s no secret that smoking kills, but besides the obvious (respiratory issues, emphysema, cancer, etc) constantly inhaling harmful toxins can prematurely age your skin. Smoking can cause fine lines and wrinkles to form around your mouth from the repetitive puckering of your lips and can contribute to a more haggard and old appearance.
Anti-aging creams can help reduce some of the effects, but the only real cure is to quit. If you are struggling to quit smoking, there are many government-funded programs available to help you successfully quit. A quick internet search can help you locate one in your state or province.
#8 – You Spend Unprotected Time In The Sun
So many of us are particularly bad when it comes it rubbing in sunscreen before stepping out. Unprotected exposure to the sun’s UV rays can cause hyperpigmentation, premature wrinkles and fine lines, destruction of your natural collagen and elastin, and may lead to cancer.
If you know that applying sunscreen is something you are likely to forget, but you never forget to slather on the moisturizer after your shower then tries choosing a daily moisturizer that contains an SPF so you’re always protected.
#9 – You Don’t Catch Enough Zzz’s
Sleep is integral to maintaining the proper function of your body. This downtime allows your body to recover, regenerate and rejuvenate. Lack of sleep can increase your cortisol (stress hormone) levels, which can lead to skin issues like acne breakouts. It also helps create those dark bags under your eyes and makes you appear older.
Catch 7-8 hours of sleep each night to rectify this. This may mean recording your favorite late night show or putting down the cell phone an hour earlier, but we promise your skin will thank you for it.
#10 – You Don’t Drink Enough Water
Life can be hectic. Maybe you find yourself running a million errands or getting sucked into work and often times you forget to drink water until you’re dying of thirst. Dehydration can be a killer for your skin, especially since our bodies are made up of over 60% water.
If you struggle to stay hydrated them start by monitoring your water intake using an app like MyFitnessPal or Daily Water (found on iTunes App Store). Set an alarm on your phone if you have to. By remaining hydrated your skin will look younger, firmer and clearer for longer.
So there you have it, 10 of the most common habits that are destroying your skin. Many of these bad habits are easy to fix and don’t cost a penny. If you start by integrating a few of these tips into your daily skincare routine your skin will begin to feel and look better in no time. Now tell us, which one of these skin crimes are you guilty of committing? Share your comments in the section below.