1. Taking showers the wrong way
This one is probably the hardest to get over for me — I like my showers to be *literally* scorching hot. But since we spend so much time in the shower, it’s crucial to the health of our skin that we’re showering the right way. Showers that are too hot will dry out skin, and even worse, burn it, causing inflammation and rosacea to act up. Whatever facial cleansing you do in the shower should be the very last step, right before you get out — cleansing causes acidity, so you need to put on product immediately after washing to balance the skin.
2. Eating a no-fat diet
Many of the low-fat diets and products are losing popularity with the shocking revelation that fat is, in fact, not bad for you (as long as it’s the good kind!). Whether you’re keto or not, your body needs healthy fats for many benefits, including skin health. Omega-3 fatty acids in particular keep skin moisturized and assist in collagen production, both of which keep skin radiant. Load up on avocados, extra-virgin olive oil, flaxseeds, salmon, eggs, and nuts and seeds to make sure you’re getting enough of the right nutrients to give your skin what it needs to be healthy.
This goes for skipping meals, too. With how busy I know you are, it may be tempting to grab a protein bar or forgo the meal altogether, but each meal is a chance to load your body with amazing nutrients that make you your healthiest, most energized self — and yes, even your most beautiful. Pre-make smoothies or take homemade snacks like trail mix, hard-boiled eggs, or veggies when you know you’re going to be busy.
3. Living in a big city
If you live in a big city like New York, LA, or Chicago, you might want to think twice about how you’re protecting your skin. Pollution has a bigger effect on our skin health than we realize — it can cause breakouts, as well as sallow tone or dullness. But don’t worry, you don’t have to move! To prevent the effects of pollution, load up on lots of fresh fruits and veggies to get rid of toxins and use protective skincare products that are specifically formulated for protecting against pollution.
4. Using a product just because it’s trendy
If you know me, you know I’m a self-titled beauty nerd — I absolutely will try anything once. While this is my greatest passion, it’s also my greatest fault, because I’ve had to learn (sometimes the hard way) to personalize my skincare experimenting for my own skin, rather than what’s new and appealing. If everybody’s raging about the new it-product, it is so tempting to “add to cart” ASAP, but just because it’s all the rage on your Instagram feed doesn’t mean it’s right for you.
Try new products, by all means, but try based on what’s right for your skin type, not what’s popular with your favorite influencer. For example, if you have dry, sensitive skin, retinol or vitamin C can cause inflammation, and oily skin might break out when using certain thick oils or creams. Experiment for the sake of finding out what ingredients work best with your skin.
5. Not giving your skin enough time to adjust to a new product
Speaking of experimenting with new products, there’s an abundance of good stuff out there — sprays, serums, toners, essences, sheet masks, balms — and it’s easy to feel like the dog from Up (“Squirrel!”) when the next best thing is always popping up on the Sephora homepage or written about in your favorite magazine. But — honesty time — most ingredients take a while to actually work, so it’s always important to give it time whenever you’re trying a new product. Ask your dermatologist if certain ingredients or new products are right for you, and give it at least 2-3 months to actually see a difference. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither was flawless skin.
6. Ignoring minor food intolerances
You know the typical symptoms of food allergies — swollen throat, severe stomach pains, vomiting. But did you know that certain food intolerances can actually just show up as acne, eczema, or rosacea? The most common food intolerances are gluten, dairy, caffeine, alcohol, and sugar (I know, basically all the good things in life!), so you can try cutting out one at a time to see if it makes any difference in your skin. However, you might also have intolerances to even traditionally healthy foods (like nuts, chickpeas, or pickled foods), so consider keeping a food diary and tracking breakouts or inflammation to find any patterns.