The skin is the largest organ in the human body, and so looking after our skin is vital for our health. Healthy skin is also essential for our appearance, and makes all the difference when it comes to fighting the signs of ageing.

Most people recognise the importance of looking after the skin, but not we do not always go about this the right way. Here are the poor skincare habits that are detrimental to your skin.

  1. Not Protecting Yourself from the Sun

The sun is one of our skin’s worst enemies, at least if it is exposed to too much sun without protection. Sunlight contains ultraviolet (UV) rays that are very damaging to the skin and greatly increase the signs of ageing, not to mention greatly increasing the risk of skin cancers.

It is essential to protect your skin by wearing sunscreen that is at least SPF 30+ on a daily basis. You can either apply a sunscreen or use a moisturiser that is SPF rated. This is an easy way to remember to always protect yourself from the sun.

  1. Failing to Cleanse Daily

Cleansing your face is an essential part of your daily beauty routine and failing to do so every day can be damaging to the skin. It is understandable that you may fall into bed some days without cleansing your face first, however this means going to bed with leftover makeup, dirt and oil on your skin. This, in turn, will lead to clogged pores, breakouts, inflammation and irritation of the skin.

It is therefore critical that you cleanse daily, even if it is a quick clean with a cleansing oil or a brief swipe with micellar water. Make sure that your makeup is removed, as well as dirt and oil build-up, before your face hits the pillow. In the same way, it is important to regularly exfoliate in order to unclog your pores, though this doesn’t need to be done every day: usually once or twice a week will be sufficient, depending on your skin type.

  1. Over-Cleansing

Just as failing to cleanse can be a big mistake, cleansing your skin too much can also be a problem. Washing your skin too much will strip it off its natural oils. This makes the skin more exposed to pollutants and other elements that may damage it. Exfoliating the skin too often can have a similar effect, as well as inflaming and irritating the skin. You should be sure to cleanse no more than twice a day – any more and you risk over-cleansing. Cleansing once a day is the minimal, twice is ideal, and any more is probably too much!

  1. Not Moisturising

Some people avoid moisturising their skin, particularly if they have oily skin. People with an oily skin type may feel that moisturising is not necessary or may even think it is ill-advised as it may lead to breakouts. However, failing to moisturise dries out the skin and allows fine lines to develop. Furthermore, this means that the skin will dry out and likely produce more oil, encouraging breakouts and acne.

If you have oily skin, look for a lightweight moisturiser designed for this skin type, but don’t skip moisturiser entirely! Moisturising is also an important part of aftercare following cosmetic procedures. For example, if you have a microneedling procedure it is essential to use an appropriate moisturiser afterwards to prevent damage to the skin and make sure you receive the maximum benefits from the procedure.

  1. Poor Dietary Habits

Healthy skin isn’t just about what you put on the outside, it can also be effected by what you put in your mouth. Sugary foods in particular can cause a range of skin problems such as acne and breakouts. Other foods can lead to skin irritation if you have an intolerance: you can check this by trying an elimination diet and seeing if you notice an improvement.

Similarly, drinking excessive alcohol can be very damaging to the skin, causing issues such as sagging, threaded veins, and poor complexion. Alcohol also dehydrates the skin, making fine lines and wrinkles more likely.

  1. Dry Shaving

Dry shaving is another poor habit that is detrimental to the skin. It is all too tempting to quickly dry shave your legs or armpits without shaving foam or moisturiser as you head out the door. However, this can damage the skin with nicks or cuts, as well as cause irritation. To properly shave without damaging your skin, soften your skin first in the shower and then lather the area with shaving cream (not soap!). After wards, dry the air and apply lotion or moisturiser.

  1. Poor Sleep

You may not realise the impact that your late nights or restless sleeping patterns are having on your skin. However, the old adage of getting your “beauty sleep” is very true: getting enough, good-quality sleep if essential for beautiful-looking skin.

While we sleep, our body performs many essential processes such as growing and repairing cells and tissues – including in the skin. Fail to get enough sleep and your body cannot adequately repair the damage to your skin that is part of normal wear and tear, making it appear sallow, dull or uneven.

Author's Bio: 

Max Leed, Project Director at TCb