7 Common Skin Care Myths & What The Truth Is

In a world where beauty bloggers act like they have a medical degree and influencers promote facial cleansing brushes on their Insta stories, basically anyone can call themselves a skin care expert. While it’s great that we can learn everything we need to know about toners and exfoliators from just a quick Google search, it also means that a lot of us have based our skin care routine on information that might not be accurate. Don’t panic and throw out all of your favorite beauty products just yet, though! Take a look at these busted skin care myths to get all of the facts on how to achieve the glowing skin you’ve always dreamed of.

Myth #1: Anti-Aging Products Are Only For People With Wrinkles

You might think that anti-aging products are for “older” people who have wrinkled skin. What many of those people will tell you is that they’ve had no luck getting their skin to look baby-smooth again like it once did. The truth is, once your skin has wrinkles, there’s no magic cream that can take them away permanently. The most effective way to be wrinkle-free is to start taking preventative measures when you’re young (in your 20s and 30s). That means using moisturizer and sunscreen or another SPF face lotion every day to prevent the development of dark spots and/or other signs of premature aging.

Myth #2: You Only Need Sunscreen If You’re Going To Be In Direct Sunlight

This brings us to our next point: it seems that the only time most of us remember to put on sunscreen is when we are going to the beach, or doing some kind of outdoor activity in the sunny summer months. While it is incredibly important that you use sun protection regularly when you plan to go out in direct sunlight, it’s equally as important to wear sunscreen on a daily basis, regardless of how sunny or cloudy it may seem.  Especially when it comes to preserving and protecting your complexion, a daily broad-spectrum SPF is essential. Whether you realize it or not, even the smallest amount of sun exposure—whether that be through a window, sitting outside, or even through cloud cover—puts your skin at risk for negative effects from sun exposure. We know that getting a sunburn is very bad for your skin, but the sun can also penetrate the layers of your skin and cause damage deeper down, potentially leading to skin cancer, the most common cancer in the United States.

Myth #3: A Set Skin Care Routine Will Work For Everyone

You may be thinking, “everyone with perfect skin is following the same skin care routine, and I need to use exactly what they use if I want to have great skin too.” Yeah, that just isn’t the case. Each person has unique skin needs based on their skin type. A person with oily skin will need to use different products to cater to their needs as opposed to someone with dry skin. The same goes for people with mature skin, or sensitive skin, and so on. Just because one product worked amazingly for one person, doesn’t mean it will have the same effects for you. Take the time to research your skin type, or visit a dermatologist to find out what your skin type is, and the best way to care for it. The good news is there are so many products available that you’re bound to find the right ones for you.

Myth #4: Once Your Skin Reaches Maturity You’ll No Longer Break Out

You’d think that once you make it past your teens, you’ll never have to deal with acne again. Sorry, but we have some bad news. As it turns out, acne doesn’t seem to magically remove itself from your existence once you turn 20. Actually, your skin doesn’t fully mature until you’re about 30 to 35 years old, and even once you’ve reached that age range, you may still find yourself dealing with those pesky zits. But why? The most probable cause of your adult acne is your hormones. Your hormones change a lot over the course of your life, but factors like birth control, menopause, and even just your menstrual cycle can cause your hormones to fluctuate and create acne on your skin. Ughhh, we can’t have any nice things.

Myth #5: A Skin Care Routine Is Only For Your Face

Finally, you’ve perfected your skin care routine and your complexion looks the best it ever has. While achieving that sought-after facial glow does qualify for a well-deserved pat on the back, you may be forgetting about the big picture: the rest of the skin on your body! 

You can’t forget to invest just as much time and energy into the skin on your body as you do for your face. Though your routine won’t be the same—our body skin is much thicker, which is why you wouldn’t use the same products on your face that you would on your body (and vice versa). TG, because facial products are expensive. 

When it comes to skin care on your body, keep it simple. Wash your skin well with a soap or shower gel to remove the daily dirt, sweat, and other sh*t that collect on your skin. Next, exfoliate your clean skin. Whether you use a dry brush or a scrub to exfoliate while in the shower, it’s important to remove dead skin cells from your body to reveal the healthy skin underneath. Finally, moisturize. Once you’ve finished cleansing and exfoliating your skin, finishing off with a moisturizer is arguably one of the most important steps, as moisturizing serves to replenish your skin barrier, helping to improve its overall tone and texture.

Myth #6: A Skin Care Routine Is Only Effective If You Use A Multitude Of Targeted Products

With the thousands of skin care products available on the market, you may think that your routine will need to consist of 10 products minimum. The good news is, it doesn’t have to be that complicated (or expensive). If you want to create a perfectly effective skin care regimen, keep it limited to these three steps: cleanse, exfoliate, and moisturize. Cleaning your skin of makeup and dirt, exfoliating off the dead skin cells built up on your face, and moisturizing the new and healthy skin underneath is the simplest way to care for your skin on a daily basis and maintain a clean, clear, and healthy complexion. 

However, if you have any unique skin concerns—like acne, for example—you may want to consider incorporating a specialized treatment product into your skin care regimen, as this will work to effectively target and address these areas. An acne cream containing tretinoin, for instance, is great for increasing skin cell renewal, which helps to prevent acne from the inside-out. On the other hand, if you’re concerned about dryness or wrinkles, applying a serum for overnight recovery can help penetrate the skin at a deeper level for better results. 

At the most basic level, keep your skin care routine short and simple, and only incorporate more targeted treatments if and when necessary. Make sure to apply these treatments only to the particular areas of your skin that need some additional TLC.

Myth #7: “A Little Dab Will Do Ya”

Most skin care products will say to only apply a pea-sized amount of the product to your face, and this is true when using a product like an eye cream, where a little can go a long way. In reality, however, the suggested amount of product for proper use with most skin care products isn’t enough to give complete results for your skin. If you’re going to cleanse, exfoliate, or moisturize, don’t be afraid to apply a little bit extra. The lighter products like a cleanser or moisturizer can’t really hurt your skin, so if you want to get your complexion extra clean and smooth, you can add a little more than the bottle suggests. 

If you do choose to use more of a product than suggested, keep your skin type in mind. For instance, those with dry skin shouldn’t over-cleanse, as their skin will dry out easily, and for those with oily skin, there’s no need to go overboard on the moisturizer or facial oils. 

For products like a serum, a chemical exfoliator, or a targeted treatment, you’ll want to stick to the directions on the label, as these products are stronger and can cause damage to your skin if not used improperly or too frequently. 

Images: Retha Ferguson / Pexels

The Best Expensive Beauty Serums And Their Cheap Alternatives

Everytime I go into the wide interwebs, some other beauty blogger is telling me to smear oil or a fancy serum on my face. Look, I already have a strict skin care regimen and am v afraid of breaking out, so the idea of patting on literal oil is a lil frightening.

However, I will admit that there are quite a few serums and oils out there that totally work. The problem is that they’re weighing in at more than I care to afford (esp. when I need to spend money on important shit like Zara’s new Fall collection, mmkay?). We’ve rounded up the pricey shit that people like Gwyneth Paltrow slides on her face (I assume when she isn’t steaming her snatch) and the cheaper alternatives that, SHOCKER, work just as well.

Pricey Shiiiiit: Rodin Olio Lusso

Described as “rich and deluxe,” this serum made from what I assume are nearly extinct plants and animals will make you feel extra if you use it. It helps with dry skin and wrinkles, so you can look 25 for another few years. The scariest part of this shit is that a TEENY TINY BOTTLE will set you back $170. This better fix my dry skin, help me drop 20 pounds, and cook dinner for me, too.

Rodin Olio Lusso

For Your Cheap Ass: Botanics Hydration Burst with Clary Sage Light Serum

If you need a serum to get your dry, crusty skin to snap back into action, this shit it for you. It’s better for sensitive skin, too, than some of the heavier alternatives. The best part is the price tag—pick this shit up at Target for under $15.

Botanics Hydration Burst with Clary Sage Light Serum

Pricey Shiiiiit: de Mamiel Winter Facial Oil

For the low low price of $114, you can experience this “exquisite seasonal oil”—available four times a year—you know, for all the seaaaasons. The winter one has tons of essential oils, fruit and plant extracts, and all kinds of shit to “renew your spirit.” Like I said before, for that fucking price, it better come with a fur coat made of something exotic and extinct.

de Mamiel Winter Facial Oil

For Your Cheap Ass: Clinique Acne Solutions Acne + Line Correcting Serum

See, when you aren’t dishing out big bucks, you get products that straight-up call you out for having a few zits. Rude. However, at only about $45, I’ll take that side of shame with my serum. This shit is oil free, but the serum made from salicylic acid and other awesome pimple-popping meds helps to not just battle your face’s bumps, but also wrinkles. Win.

Clinique Acne Solutions Acne + Line Correcting Serum

Pricey Shiiiiit: Kypris Beauty Elixir I-1000 Roses

Described as “magic” for dull, tired, and dry skin, this shit has the “essential oil of 1000 organic and biodynamic Bulgarian roses.” I had no idea literally anything in Bulgaria was that valuable. Relax, I’m kidding. So with the expensive flowers also comes black raspberry and pomegranate seed extracts, antioxidants, and LOTS of vitamin C—which we all know is crack for your skin. This luxurious shit is the most expensive on our list at $225.

KYPRIS Beauty Elixir 1000 Roses

For Your Cheap Ass: John Masters Organics Vitamin C Anti-Aging Face Serum

If you’re familiar with John Masters, you know he makes a mean sea salt spray for your hair (yaaaaas!). The natural beauty carries into this serum, which, with its tons of vitamin C and nourishing antioxidants, helps chill out the wrinkles that may be starting AND add some brightness. For $26, I’ll take what I can get.