As a dermatologist, I’ve seen people trying hard to take good care of their skin but failing to understand the big mistakes and myths surrounding the daily skincare regimen. Whether it is about going to bed with your make up, forgetting the benefits of sunscreen, not drinking enough water, we in our daily life make some skincare mistakes. But some of these mistakes can be worse than others when it comes to the health of your skin.
Over-complicating your skincare routine
We have observed that 50% of those who visit our clinic have complicated skincare regimens that are actually damaging the skin and disturbing the natural acidic pH. There are a variety of products available in the market and people have started experimenting with their skin. This is due partly to social media advertising focused on skin care and beauty advice. Mostly, females between their 20’s and 30’s face these problems just because of constantly switching up products and overcomplicated skin care regimes. It is advised to select products that suit your skin and not frequently change products as it can take at least six weeks for visible results.
Not adopting a skincare routine suited for your age
It is a fact that your skin will change with your age. The skincare regimen we used in our twenties will not be apt in your forties. So, if you want to maintain that youthful glow, you need to adapt the skincare routine suiting your age. In our twenties, we still follow the teenage skincare that treats oiliness and occasional breakouts. However, it is this decade that needs most of the attention as the skin starts evolving in this age and by our 30’s we generally observe early signs of aging skin. And by our 40’s our skin starts reflecting our lifestyle and skincare. So, we need to choose a routine according to the need of our skin and not just by word of mouth. You should start using an antioxidant serum and give proper attention to your diet.
You don’t need sunscreen on a cloudy day.
Not just on a sunny day but even on a cloudy day, UV radiation can be harmful to your skin. So, make sure you always use sunscreen and re-apply it every three hours. Also, it is very important to apply sunblock before swimming and also when applying makeup. It’s just a myth that your skin will get protected only by applying makeup that contains SPF. In this case, you need to apply 14 to 15 times the amount of make-up you normally wear, just to reach the level of normal sunscreen cream. So, you should always use sunscreen in addition to makeup.
Higher the SPF, better the protection
The Sun Protection Factor (SPF) on a sunscreen means the amount of protection the product provides from the harmful rays and sunburn. The SPF product ranges from 2 to 50 and the number refers to the ability of the product to bounce sun rays. Many products offer protection from both UVA and UVB rays. Some products also offer composites like avobenzone, titanium dioxide and zinc oxide that protect the skin from UVA rays.
The SPF rating in the sunscreen is calculated by comparing the total time needed to produce sunburn on sunscreen-protected skin by the total time required to cause sunburn on the unprotected skin. So, it’s a very common mistake for common people to think and understand that sunblock with SPF 45 provides three times the protection, the one with SPF 15 would offer. But in reality, sunblock with SPF 15 filters about 93% of UVB rays, whereas SPF 30 filters about 97%, sunblock with SPF 50 filters 98% and SPF 100 filters 99%. That means the higher you go, the smaller the difference turned out to be.
(Dr. Sruthi Gondi is the Founder and Managing Director at Science of Skin, Hyderabad)