Surprisingly there are a lot of beliefs that have dictated our beauty regimes that are in fact total untruths. Debbie Parker, a full time blogger for the skincare website - Beauty Reviews, takes a look at some of the most common skin care myths.
1. Oily skin can be controlled with topical skin care products
At the moment as science stands, this is not true. Oil production is triggered by hormones, and altering hormone production is not something available in a skin care product.
However, excess sebum (oil) can also be produced by inflammation and irritation of the skin, leading to further blocking of pores and even more oil, and this is something which can be helped by retinoids.
Retinoids, such as vitamin A or tretinoin can affect the shape of the pores so oil can flow more evenly, preventing further clogging. Certain masks and powders can also help reduce surface oils, but as yet no topical cream will alter the root cause of oily skin.
2. If you clean your face better you can clear up your spots
Another dangerous myth which can make problem skin worse by over cleaning. Acne is caused by a fluctuation in the hormones which affect the oil gland, over cleaning triggers irritation in the form of increased oil production, which can then lead to inflammation and further breakouts.
The best way of dealing with acne prone skin is to use a gentle cleanser which does not damage the delicate outer barrier of the skin, and a gentle exfoliator to remove dead skin cells to clear the pores.
3. Products labelled "hypoallergenic" are better for sensitive skin
This is one big untruth I expect a lot of us have been laboring under for years. "Hypoallergenic" is pure marketing blurb which tricks the consumer into believing these products are better for sensitive skin, and considering how many of us classify our skin type as sensitive, that presents the manufacturers with a hugely lucrative market to exploit.
There is no regulation anywhere in the world which controls what ingredients should go into these products and what should not. There are no approved methods of testing or guidelines for the manufacture of these products, and no procedures whatsoever to determine if a product should be classed as hypoallergenic.
4. Eating chocolate makes you break out in spots
There is no scientific proof to support this myth. It is known however that poor diet can irritate the skin and make spots worse, so like everything that is a little bit naughty, eat it in moderation within a healthy balanced diet and you shouldn't see any adverse effects on your skin.
5. Waxing or shaving will make hair grow back thicker
This myth has probably stemmed from an optical illusion, as shorter hair only seems thicker and coarser while longer hair appears finer. Re-growth from shaving or waxing is no different, so our regular trips to the beauty salon or missions with the razor will not make us any hairier in the future.