The Top 9 Beauty & Skincare Myths Debunked

May 27, 2021

1. It is better to buy expensive products only for your skin care 
Dr Deborah Lee says: “There’s a lot of psychology involved in purchasing skin products. Many women feel that if they pay more for a skin product, it must be good. In fact, this may not be true at all. Always read the product label and find out what ingredients are in the product”.
It’s important to buy the right skincare products for your skin type and do your research before buying new products.

2. You can outgrow acne 
Acne can happen at any age, but is usually due to a majority of hormonal factors. Dr Deborah Lee says: “Although teenage acne is all too common – 80% of teenagers complain of acne! –  and does tend to improve with age, many women find this does not happen, and they continue to have acne into their adult life. By definition, adult acne in females is acne diagnosed in women over the age of 25 years. Medical studies suggest that acne can persist for many years, and in fact, is present in 5% of women aged 40-49 years. Acne is more common in women than men and can persist over the age of 50.”

3. Oily skin doesn’t need moisturiser
Dr Deborah Lee says: “This is something that often causes confusion. Oily skin means the skin is producing too much natural oil – sebum. This is not the same as the degree of hydration of the skin – which is the amount of water retention in the skin. In fact, stripping away the natural oils from the skin increases the ability of the skin to lose water, and dry out further!” 
Just because the skin is oily, does not mean it does not need moisturising. If you have oily skin, look for non-comedogenic moisturisers as these won’t block your pores.

4. Wearing makeup every day is bad for your skin
Dr Deborah Lee says: There’s no evidence wearing make up every day is bad for your skin, so long as you follow some simple rules:
  • Always remove your makeup properly every night – do not go to bed with your makeup on as this results in clogged pores. Although makeup remover or wipes should be used first, after this, wash your face with good old fashioned soap and water! Make sure you remove eyeliner, mascara, and makeup – right up to the hairline. 

  • Every morning, apply anti U/V sun protection to your skin, You should apply an SPF 50/50 sunscreen, effective against U/VA and U/VB, to your face and neck, before applying moisturiser, and then apply your makeup.

  • Choose the correct type of makeup for your skin type. You may want to take professional advice on this.

  • Clean your makeup brushes once a month. Sweat and dead skin cells make these a breeding ground for bacteria.

  • Don’t share makeup – this is another way to spread infection.

  • The beauty industry remains largely unregulated. Always read the product labels. Go for well-known brands you can trust, and simple ingredients. There is a long list of potentially harmful ingredients

5. You don’t need to apply an SPF if you have one in your foundation
Unfortunately, you cannot rely solely on the SPF factor of foundation for adequate anti-U/V skin protection. According to Dr Leslie Baumann, a dermatologist, you would need seven times the normal amount of foundation and fourteen times as much powder to get adequate skin protection – and that’s just not practicable!
Dr Deborah Lee says: “If you prefer, you might choose a moisturiser that contains at least an SPF factor 15, before applying your foundation. However, make sure your skin product blocks both U/VA and U/VB radiation. Apply your moisturiser + SPF, or SPF sunscreen, to your face and neck liberally, and allow it to settle on the skin for a few minutes, perhaps while you brush your teeth, and before applying your foundation.”

6. A lack of sleep is the cause of the dark circle under your eye
Under-eye dark circles (UEDC) go by the proper medical name of per-orbital hypermelanosis. There is a common theory that these UEDCs are due to lack of sleep, but in fact, there is little medical evidence to back this up. Dr Deborah Lee says “As its name suggests, UEDC is due to deposition of the pigment melanin in the thinner, more delicate skin under the eyes.  It tends to worsen with age due to skin sagging and loss of subcutaneous fat. Research has shown there is more deoxygenated blood in the periorbital tissues of those with UEDC. This is said to be due to haemodynamic vasocongestion. UEDCs are also made worse by dehydration. UEDCs also tend to run in families, suggesting a genetic predisposition. However, although many people with UEDCs report a lack of sleep, research has not been able to categorically link UEDCs to sleep deprivation”.

7. You need to start wearing eye cream by a certain age
“Some skin specialists refute the need to use eye creams at all. Although the skin around the eyes is particularly delicate, it is still likely to respond to other face creams. However, the skin around the eyes is fragile and tends to dry out more quickly than skin elsewhere on the face. This is why fine lines and wrinkles may be the first signs of ageing skin.” according to Dr Deborah Lee.
If you want to use eye cream, there is no magic age at which to start using it. Eye creams that contain retinol, speed up cell turnover and can be used from age 25. Retinol also stimulates the production of elastin and can help prevent the development of fine lines and wrinkles.  Eye creams containing vitamin C – a potent antioxidant that can be used at any age from age 18,  and hyaluronic acid – an adjunct to plumping out the skin, that can be used from age 20 and above. “If you start using these creams in your twenties, they will have the best chance of anti-ageing effects. However, there is no specific age at which starting to use them is mandatory”.

8. You can find skincare products that work as good as cosmetic procedures
Dr Deborah Lee says “This is absolutely not the case. Cosmetic surgery, and treatments such as laser treatment, injections, and fillers, can make a big difference to your appearance. These procedures can make you look significantly younger, by filling out the skin, smoothing wrinkles, and reversing skin sagging – all hallmarks of ageing”.
A good skincare routine is vital to keep your skin in the best condition and to help protect the skin from photo-ageing. However, no amount of cleanser, toner, or moisturiser, not even a full-blown facial, can have the same effect as a facelift!

9. Eating chocolate will make you breakout 
There is medical research that now exists to show there is no definitive link between eating chocolate and acne.
Dr Deborah Lee says “Your diet may still have a bearing on your acne. Acne is less common in people who don’t eat a Western diet. This is a diet that contains many high glycaemic foods – these are high carbohydrates foods that release energy quickly, such as bread, biscuits, cakes … and yes… you guessed it… chocolate”!

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