Touching your face, picking at pimples, spending too long in the sun: these are all common causes of acne and premature aging, among other undesirable skin issues, but they aren’t the only culprits that can be held responsible for various forms of skin damage and reactions. These six variables are lesser-known causes of breakouts and aging, but they’re no less common than their better-known counterparts. Take heed!
Let’s get this out of the way: Skipping meals is detrimental to your body and your health in so, so very many ways, but beyond that, it also ensures your skin will look significantly less than glowing. Consuming too few calories shows on your face because you’re eschewing essential nutrients, like protein and vitamins, which all contribute to good skin health. Any way you cut it, a lack of vitamins and minerals will contribute to compromised skin way more than it’ll whittle your waistline.
Just as holding your phone to your face for long periods of time can cause breakouts, your sunglasses are doing the same. Granted, sunglasses protect your eyeballs and eyelids from the sun, but the way they rest against your face acts as a breeding ground for breakout-causing bacteria. Makeup, oil, and debris accumulate on your specs over the course of the day, so be sure to clean them regularly with an alcohol wipe to keep bacteria at bay.
Hair products are a major culprit of breakouts and irritation in quite a few places: Your back, chest, forehead, and sides of your face are all susceptible to breakouts caused by hair products because of where the hair touches the face. There are plenty of ingredients in plenty of hair products that aren’t suitable for use on skin, which naturally means they can clog pores and cause other skin reactions.
Think you should only wear sunscreen when you’re outside? Think again. UV exposure still occurs when you’re in direct view of the sun, even if there’s glass separating you from the outdoors, as in the case of driving. In fact, studies have found that there are more cases of skin cancer found on the left side of the body than the right—that’s because your left side is the one directly next to the window when you’re driving.
Beyond simply clogging pores and irritating sensitive skin, heavy makeup deprives the skin of its ability to “breathe” and regulate itself. Though some foundations and other base products tout 24-hour wear times, no makeup should be left on for that long, even if it could technically be up to the task. It’s critical to wash your face completely both in the morning and at night so that your skin can complete its daily cycle.
Certain prescription drugs, including some common antibiotics, can make your skin more susceptible to sun damage, and unless you’re made aware of that side effect, you can incur serious sunburns without knowing why. If a medication you’re prescribed warns of sun sensitivity, take note—these warnings aren’t messing around, and you should be doubly cautious of keeping your skin protected to avoid serious consequences.