Oh the things we do in the name of beauty—no hair out of place, no polish chips in sight, no square inch left un-scrubbed. But when does good grooming turn into bad habits? It’s a question we’ve often asked ourselves, here at Makeup.com. Unfortunately the line is a thin one, and perceptions of positive and negative beauty behaviors can get blurred, as we get accustomed to our routines. So today we’re here to snap you back to reality: stop rationalizing these five bad beauty habits.
The Bad: Picking Off Nail Polish (and Gels!) Why it’s a habit: There’s an odd sense of satisfaction involved with picking off every last bit. Polish remover just doesn’t carry that same simple pleasure.
Why you need to quit: Peeling, picking, or ripping off any coat of nail polish – gels or not – can damage and weaken the natural nail. Whether you see it or not, with each piece of polish you chip away you’re also ripping up precious layers of the nail plate. We get it; once the first chip appears it’s like game on, but resist the urge pick and revive your wearing manicure with one of the many manicure saving tricks.
The Bad: Excessive Exfoliation Why it’s a habit: That baby soft feeling just can’t be beat. Plus, the powers of exfoliation are touted left and right, so it’s a win-win, right?
Why you need to quit: Yes, here at MDC we too sing the praises of exfoliation. But, as with wine, chocolate and most of life’s indulgences, the mantra everything in moderation is key. Once or twice a week is really the sweet spot. Too much scrubbing can lead to irritation, redness, rawness, and dry patches. If you’re oily, going too hard can have the opposite effect and actually cause your glands to over produce to oil, perpetuating a vicious cycle. Remember, your skin does shed dead cells naturally, so be gentler than you think. Chemical exfoliators and facial cleansing brushes like the Clarisonic Mia 2 can be just as effective as abrasive scrubs and much less stripping.
The Bad: Plucking Between Brow Appointments Why it’s a habit: You can’t let those early to sprout hairs ruin your otherwise pristine arches.
Why you need to quit: This one is a toughie. On the one hand, you can’t stand to be seen with anything less than beautiful, bold brows. On the other, you know going to town with your tweezers is not in your best interest. Hair grows at different rates (unfortunately), so chances are those self-tweezed hairs won’t be long enough for removal at your next eyebrow appointment. Trying to dig one out before it’s ready can turn that baby into an ingrown before you know it. And no one wants that.
The Bad: Abusing Your Brushes Why it’s a habit: You barely find time to clean the bathroom–let alone the numerous makeup brushes in it.
Why you need to quit: You may not want to hear it, but truth is your brushes are a breeding ground for bacteria. Unless they’re washed regularly, your beauty tools get loaded with old makeup, dead skin and oil. Even mold can get lodged between the fibers. Clearly this is not a good situation for your brushes, as buildup can weaken the bristles can cause them to fall out, but think about your skin. You spend countless hours and dollars treating it to the best of the best morning and night, only to swipe dirty, bacteria-ridden brushes across it? Something’s not right. The secret to clear skin may not be clean brushes, but you can’t pretend that’s not a factor. Wash all of your makeup tools at least once a month (twice a month if you’re an over-achiever). Your brushes will live longer, your makeup will look better, and your skin will thank you.
The Bad: Getting Squeaky Clean (Seven Days a Week) Why it’s a habit: You love the freshly showered feel and have a general inclination towards personal hygiene. These aren’t terrible qualities…
Why you need to quit: We’re certainly not opposed to cleanliness, but the daily 20-minute showers are probably doing more harm than good–especially as the colder, drier months approach. Standing under a steady stream of hot water sucks the moisture right out of your skin, but maybe you’re a gym rat (good for you!) and parting with a daily shower isn’t an option. Then at least step away from the shampoo. Your scalp is capable of maintaining its own natural balance of oil production, but when those oils are repeatedly washed out every day, it compensates. And thus begins the cycle–which you can wean your hair off of with time. For those second- (or third-) day dirty days, turn every girl’s best friend: le dry shampoo. We recommend you stock your bathroom with L’Oréal EverStyle Texture Series Energizing Dry Shampoo or Lulu Organics Hair Powder.
Have you been able to break any of these bad habits? What about these other 5 bad beauty habits? Tell us how you did in the comments.