Dermatologists Weigh In On The 5 Worst Things You Can Do to Your Skin

over scrubbing face worst things for your skin, worst things you can do to your skin

Avoid These Mistakes!

One day – decades from now – my tombstone will read, “Here lies Francine … a loving mother and wife, devoted to her family, friends and daily application of SPF 50.” (Clearly, I’ll need a big tombstone or a really small font.) In any case, I think you’ve come to know my thoughts on the topic of sunscreen. Along with healthy eating, proper hydration, restful sleep and daily cleansing, sunscreen is probably the best thing you can do for your skin. Ok, so we know our must do’s. But what about the must don’ts? Well, I did some digging to research what dermatologist’s biggest concerns are (and there were many!). But we narrowed the list down to the top 5 worst things you can do to your skin. Young, old and anywhere in between, here’s what NOT to do.

For a few great exfoliation tips, be sure and read this post.

If you haven’t already, be sure and subscribe to Erin’s exclusive newsletter here.  It’s packed with the best style, beauty, home, wellness, and lifestyle content that you’re sure to love!

Aggressive Cleansers

While your skin needs to be cleansed twice a day - morning and evening - a double cleanse isn't always necessary - especially when you wake up in the morning. It really depends on your lifestyle. Double cleansing (starting with a balm/oil, then following with a water-based cleanse) is great if you’ve worn a face full of makeup, packed a day’s worth of activity into an hour, or if you're a city dweller exposed to high pollution levels. But dermatologists warn us that over-washing is one of the worst things for your skin. It can lead to dryness, sensitivity and irritation. So, skip the double cleanse on your non-makeup days. Choose a sulfate-free cleanser to avoid stripping the skin of its natural oils. Be gentle and don’t rub the skin too harshly. These are few wonderful cleansers to try.
Tata Harper Cleansing Oil
Elemis Cleansing Balm
La Mer The Cleansing Oil

Over Exfoliating

Scrubs, acids, retinols, peels and devices are absolutely fabulous and sometimes a necessary way to shed dead skin cells and reveal fresh, radiant skin. But doing them all in succession – every day? Not so fabulous. Over exfoliating leads to irritation, redness and inflamed skin. You may even develop a rash-like texture, leading to uneven tone (like patchy, red blotches). Breakouts are another common reaction, especially small, rough, bumpy pimples. These gentle scrubs are my favorites.
Beauty Bio Glass and Gloss
Tula Detox in a Jar

Scrimping on Sunscreen

I’m certain you are diligent about daily sunscreen. But far too often, we scrimp on how much and how often we need to apply.  Once in the morning doesn’t suffice since it can easily come off your face within a couple of hours. Whether it is from sweat, water, touching your face, etc. Especially in the summer months, it’s critical to reapply every 2 hours or so to get optimal protection from UV rays. If you’re wary about layering sunscreen over make-up, sunscreen powders are awesome. Keep one stashed in your purse or car.
SuperGoop Powder Sunscreen
ColorScience Powder Sunscreen
Larkly Powder Sunscreen

Sleeping on Cotton Pillowcases

Did you know that cotton pillowcases absorb dirt, grease and grime? And did you also know that the average American changes their sheets and pillowcases once every 24 days??!!  That makes for a nasty buildup of oils, dirt and sweat from daily use. Most people don't realize that our hair holds more dirt in it than anywhere else on our bodies. They can also harbor bacteria, cause allergies and are a leading cause of acne and blackheads. Who knew it's one of the worst things for your skin?! Experts suggest washing your pillowcase every two days or so. But since cotton fabrics may cause split ends, frizz and hair breakage, swap it out for a lighter fabric, like silk.
Silk Pillowcase
Slip Pink Marble Pure Silk Pillowcase

Playing Aesthetician at Home

Just this weekend, I came across one of my favorite influencers sharing her tips on at-home dermaplaning using a hand-held razor. It took her two minutes of moving that blade around her face and the result was smooth and glowing skin. So, yesterday morning I tried it.  And promptly shaved off half of my right eyebrow. I’m not kidding. Half my eyebrow. Gone. So, please don’t try this at home. Don’t DIY and experiment with using tools “off-label.” Use them the way they are intended. Or better yet, go to a professional. Need I say more?
Join the Conversation

3 thoughts on “Dermatologists Weigh In On The 5 Worst Things You Can Do to Your Skin

  1. So I’m one of those people who has never worn foundation or lots of makeup. I have tried every sunscreen out there. I know there are chemical vs topical. I own it – I only do chemical. I flat out can’t use the zinc or titanium dioxide. I use Elemis pro-collagen spf 30 multiple times a day. I don’t own stock or sell it! I sweat (thanks Dad for those genes although I will say I think it’s why the acne fairy never visited me) – I don’t glow, perspire, look dewy or anything lovely. I flat out sweat. Zinc, etc either causes me to seriously overheat or it falls off my face. I use to play tennis and if I applied Elta on arms, face, and legs, I seriously would almost get heat stroke. It’s weird. Anyone else have this?

  2. I’m in the “shave half my eyebrow” club 😂 but I was only trying to do a fast eyebrow cleanup. Never again

    1. Oh my gosh, Tania – glad to hear I’m not the only one!


Comments are closed.

Explore More

explore more
View All Posts

Looking for The Best Summer Denim? These Are My Favorite Jeans (and Jean Shorts)

If you love denim as much as I do, then this is the post for…
Read Post

My Honest Review of The Bottega Veneta Chain Cassette Bag

This is my honest Bottega Veneta Chain Cassette Bag review and if it's worth the…
Read + Shop

Intermittent Fasting And Intuitive Fasting Explained. Which One Is Best For You?

Interested in intermittent fasting and/or intuitive fasting? We're explaining both so you can decide which…
Read + Shop