Let us preface this conversation by stating that we are big fans of an effective DIY beauty treatment or hack. We’re the first ones to whip out the scotch tape and create the perfect cat eye or slather on an avocado face mask (mmm, guac.) That being said, we do not jump into these home remedies blindly. We do our research and consult with the pros prior to trying them ourselves—and then, of course, sharing them with you!
However, some beauty fanatics are not as cautious, and jump onto “fad” at-home beauty hacks without doing their due diligence. In addition to wasting their time on fruitless treatments, they may actually be doing more damage to their skin than good. To save you from this catastrophic fate, we’re listing six beauty hacks you should NEVER try at home. We mean it!
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1. Toothpaste as an Acne Treatment
Admit it. At some point in life, you found yourself with a giant, surprise pimple (with no acne cream on hand) and dabbed toothpaste on it to dry out the blemish. It’s OK—we’ve so been there, too. And, while you may think this home remedy is one of those unsung skincare heroes, you’d be very wrong. Sorry.
There’s a reason toothpaste has the word “tooth” in it and not “acne”. Yes, the stuff can work to dry out skin, BUT it can also cause serious irritation and redness. And, it is not proven to be more effective than any other acne cream or medication on the market, so save yourself a headache and some serious skin issues and stick to tried-and-true acne products. We recommend a product like The Body ShopTea Tree Targeted Gel that will zap a blemish without over-drying skin.
2. School Glue to Remove Blackheads
We know, this is a weird one. But people are actually swiping thin layers of Elmer’s glue over their noses, allowing it to dry and then peeling it off to pull out blackheads. Besides the obvious gross-factor, this does NOT work. Period.
You will not get the satisfaction of seeing your blackheads on the thin film of glue. Why? Because it’s glue and it’s meant to make flimsy things like paper and dried macaroni stick together—not remove embedded blackheads from your skin. So, there you have it.
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3. Deodorant to Combat Shine
Lately, Insta-bloggers have started a trend that involves rubbing deodorant on their T-zones and other sweat- and oil-prone areas to mattify their skin and keep shine away. Here’s where we take issue with this: Deodorant is not the same as an anti-perspirant, so it’s not effective in preventing sweat or oil. Deodorant’s main purpose in life is to shield the odor of sweat and keep you smelling nice. That an effective oil-fighter does not make.
In fact, the sweat stick can actually work against you and aggravate and irritate skin with its fragrant-full ingredients. So your face may smell nice, but that’s about all that’s gonna happen. Try something actually designed with your face in mind, like NYXBlotting Powder, to take care of business.
4. Clear Nail Polish to Cover Cold Sores
In the beauty world, a cold sore is arguably the biggest looming threat to your face (next to a zit), in that it can come fast, furious and totally unexpected. Once it’s made an entrance, concealing the cold sore is next to impossible—forcing one to play the waiting game until that sucker decides to die down. Yikes.
Recently, rumors have spread about the wonders of clear nail polish and its ability to both heal and conceal cold sores. While we totally understand the need to make these dreaded skin issues history, by any means necessary, this is not the way to go. Not only is clear nail polish ineffective in making cold sores go away, but it’s probably one of the worst things you could put on your face. Think about it: This solution is packed with polymers designed to seal your nail polish and prevent it from chipping. Putting this on your face leaves you at risk for irritation, infection and even scarring. Instead, stick to a medically proven formula to zap those sores and just be patient—your face will thank you.
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5. Lime for Hyperpigmentation
Truth: Limes and lemons are natural exfoliants and can have some skin lightening properties. However, they are not effective remedies for hyperpigmentation like acne scars or sun spots. Lime concentrate is just not strong enough on its own to take on deep discoloration rooted under the skin’s layers. More importantly, the acidity in the fruit can have an adverse effect on your skin and lead to irritation and redness.
We suggest leaving heavy-duty hyperpigmentation issues to the pros and equip yourself with a derm-approved formula for this type of treatment. We suggest SkinceuticalsAdvanced Pigment Corrector.
6. Mouthwash as a Foot Soak
Dry, cracked feet are not cute, and while many have found solace in weekly pedicure services to keep their soles smooth and soft, not everyone has the time or funds to do so. So, we search for home remedies to soak our feet into a softer state, often relying on the powerful, cleansing powers of mouthwash and vinegar. Yes, this is as smelly as it sounds. No, it is not a proven solution for cracked-up tootsies. You need something a little more substantial like a foot scrub and pumice stone. So keep the mouthwash in the mouth, OK? If you’re looking for that tingly, cooling feel, The Body Shop has peppermint scrubs, gels, lotions and a foot soak!
Are they any DIY beauty hacks you’ve tried at home that turned out to be a disaster? Let us know in the comments below.