Bad habits. We’ve all got them, those little things we do that we know we shouldn’t, but we do anyway. Unfortunately, some of these undesirable habits could be keeping you from looking your best. You could be sabotaging your complexion daily and you don’t even know it! Lucky for you though, we’re here to help! The first step to breaking any bad habit is recognizing your naughty behavior, so let’s discuss the top five worst habits for your skin; how they are affecting you and what you can do to change your ways.
Picking at your skin
You’ve heard it before, but we’ll tell you again, please, resist the urge to poke, pick or pop! Each time you pick at your skin, it causes breakout and pimples to stay around longer. Picking at a blemish leads to more or worse inflammation of the skin, which means redness, sensitivity, scabbing, or gasp!, scarring. The best way to heal breakouts is to apply a spot treatment containing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid directly to the blemish to kill bacteria.
Unfortunately, indulging excessively in sugar, alcohol, and even caffeine can wreak havoc on your skin. Foods that spike your blood sugar too quickly, such as sweets and sodas, can cause acne or wrinkles. Sugar leads to a breakdown of elastin and collagen, which keep your skin firm and youthful. Too much alcohol leads to dehydration of the skin, which can leave you looking dry, or uneven. Of course, expecting you to give up all sugar or alcohol is asking too much, so just remember to enjoy in moderation!
Too Little Sleep
Between having a social life, stress and binging on Netflix, good sleep is hard to come by. Ideally, right around seven hours of sleep is best for skin health. Lack of sleep can lead to stress and when stress levels rise, so do cortisol levels. High levels of cortisol can lead to breakouts and blemishes on the skin as well as promote the breakdown of collagen. Collagen is crucial to keep the skin firm. While you sleep, your skin regenerates and repairs itself, so go to bed early and wake up fresh and beautiful!
Sunscreen is absolutely crucial. Every trip into the sun without sunscreen has major consequences, even in the winter. The sun’s rays accelerate aging. Sunscreen works to protect the skin from aging prematurely, which means you can avoid fine lines, and other wrinkles. The sun can also create dark spots on the face and chest over time if left unprotected.
This is it, bad habit ‘numbero uno’. Smoking is absolute murder on the skin. Smoke works its way into the skin, and the carbon monoxide found in cigarette smoke displaces the healthy oxygen in the skin. It leads to dryness and discoloration; smokers tend to have a yellowish tint to their skin. It also causes the blood vessels to narrow, reducing blood flow to the skin’s surface, resulting in loss of collagen which leads to sagging skin and wrinkles. Cigarette smoke makes the skin appear dull and strips it of essential nutrients.