While our teens were awesome, there are certain things we look back at and cringe about. It’s bad enough having Facebook remind us daily of the very public conversations we used to have with our friends on their Facebook page, and then there’s the text typing language too – you know what we mean: GR8, BRB, Skool, L8R, and lol (still guilty of the last one, we admit!). While we’re over the clumpy mascara look that was major goals of the early 2000s, and finally, most of our eyebrows have recovered from being plucked to a tiny fine line, there’s still more than a few practices we’re not guilty of quitting. Here’re five you’re probably still doing, that you really should stop, like ten years ago already!
Toothpaste on your pimples
Seeing as we all use toothpaste every single day, it’s readily available, and it doesn’t cost a bomb, when our BFF told us it would get rid of our pimples, we were more than keen to try it out – what a magical solution! Unfortunately, although toothpaste may dry up your pimples, in the long run, it’s going to do way more damage than just drying up your pimple (see the full story here). The good thing is, there are lots of spot-zapping treatments that will do the trick way better than toothpaste, and they won’t cause long-lasting damage to your skin. We love to use tea tree gels and Witch blemish sticks, which you can find variations of in all your local drugstores.
Squeezing your spots wrong
There’s a wrong way and a right way to deal with pimples and blackheads, and squeezing as hard as you can with all kinds of tools is definitely not the answer. Your skin is fragile and sensitive, and pushing and pulling on your skin will only do more harm than good. Check out our guide to squeezing pimples and blackheads the right way here.
Not washing your makeup brushes
We admit, washing our makeup brushes is quite possibly one of the most boring tasks – although seeing all the dirt coming off is insanely satisfying! We know it seems perfectly harmless, but unwashed makeup brushes and beauty sponges can harbor all kinds of bacteria, as well as accumulating dead skin cells. This means if you’re not washing your makeup brushes, you could be causing breakouts and clogged pores (see my guide to washing your brushes here). We recommend washing your makeup brushes every week and your makeup sponge after every use. If you really can’t be bothered to wash all your brushes, at least focus on your foundation and concealer brush, or any brush that you use with liquid and cream formulas.
Peeling off your gel polish
The struggle to not pick away at our gel manicure when it starts to chip and come away from our nail bed is VERY real! But we’re here’s why you need to fight the urge to rip off your gel polish and instead remove them properly. When you peel off your gel varnish, it also pulls away the delicate top layers of your nails, which not only results in white patches, which don’t look pretty, but it significantly weakens the nail. The more often you do this, the more layers of skin are removed, and not to mention the nail beds are buffed every time gel polish is applied. The damage from repeatedly peeling away your gel varnish can take months to heal. If you can’t make it for a top up, you can easily remove your gel mani at home.
How to DIY gel polish removal: Gently file the top layer of the nail varnish away. Cut cotton pads into quarters (you’ll need one quarter for each finger), and cut aluminum foil into ten sheets (roughly 10cm X 10cm). Soak the cotton pad quarters in in an acetone nail varnish remover and one finger at a time, place the quarter onto your nail and wrap it with a sheet of foil as tightly as possible. Leave it on for at least 15 minutes. When you remove the foil, the gel varnish will have dissolved and will have come away from your nail. You can repeat the process if not all of the varnish comes away immediately.
Bleaching your mustache
If you ever had a stupid boy at your school call you up on your fluffy mustache and you resorted to what seemed like the most obvious solution, bleach, then now is the time to move on. Unfortunately bleaching your mustache may make the dark hairs appear slightly less visible, but in the light of day, your bright white hair will literally glisten in the sunlight. Try threading or waxing, and if you don’t fancy spending the dollars, we swear by Veet’s face wax strips, ($8, here). Our top tip is to dust a fine layer of talcum powder on your upper lip before you apply the wax strip. This should prevent the wax strip from potentially ripping away any skin.