Since we started willa, I’ve been incredibly fortunate to learn a lot of beauty tips for great looking skin from my friend and celebrity makeup artist Matin. While many of them come in a specific product or application technique, many of the most important ones are behavioral routines. And it’s never too early or too late to start.
So here are Matin’s list of the Top 10 Skincare and Makeup No No’s he encourages you to avoid to achieve seriously stunning skin…
Willa (the girl)
1. Not reading (and getting educated on) beauty product ingredients
What goes on your skin goes in your skin. So get educated on the ingredients in your daily skincare and beauty products. Only a handful of ingredients are regulated by the FDA for safety so get smart about the ones in your bathroom and makeup bag. The EWG estimates that one in five products used on the skin contains an ingredient which is a suspected carcinogen. So chances are you are absorbing toxic chemicals into your body that over time can cause allergic reactions, endocrine disruption and other adverse health effects. So choose products that are formulated with non-toxic ingredients to keep your skin happy and healthy.
2. Not using SPF correctly
If you want to avoid premature skin aging, skin discoloration and skin cancer you need to wear SPF. And for SPF to be effective, it needs to be applied at least every 2 hours and in amounts sufficient to protect your skin. Some dermatologist say a significant amount of skin damage occurs before age 18 so don’t wait to start protecting your skin. And like with everything other tip on this list, ingredients matter—so when it comes to SPF, use chemical free options which contain Zinc and Titanium Dioxide.
3. Not moisturizing
Skipping moisturizer is a big no-no. It primes the skin before makeup so the application is smooth. And if you aren’t planning on wearing makeup, moisturizer will help make your complexion look and feel it’s best. If you have oily skin, chances are that is because you body is working overtime to produce the hydration it is lacking so don’t skimp on the moisturizer. No matter your skin type, makeup user or not, moisturizer is a daily essential.
4. Not exfoliating
Exfoliating is key to achieving a flawless skin as it removes any dead skin on the surface and promotes cell turnover and smoother looking skin. Make sure you are choosing a brand that uses jojoba beads and not plastic micro-beads which are devastating for the environment, oceanic life—and overly abrasive on your skin.
5. Not eating healthy
Achieving radiant skin is as much about what you put in your body as what you put on it. A diet heavy on, sugar, dairy, refined carbs, salt and caffeine will take a toll on your skin. And there is enough research out there showing the linkage between sugar and acne to make you pause before eating too many sour patch or chocolate chip cookies. Opt for whole foods including low-glycemic fruits, color rich veggies and lean protein. Your skin—and your body will thank you for it.
6. Not drinking enough water
If you aren’t drinking enough water your organs won’t detoxify efficiently and your skin will pay the price. The goal should be at least 8 glasses/day so head out in the morning with at least 1 and preferably 2 large water bottles to stay hydrated though out the day.
7. Not removing makeup before going to bed
No matter how tired you are, don’t go to sleep with your makeup on. It is a big mistake. It clogs your pores, trapping oil which can lead to acne, enlarged pores and rough skin. What’s more pollution from the day accumulates on the skin and when mixed with makeup, dirt and oil can stress the skin causing premature aging.. If that isn’t enough motivation to reach for the cleanser, keep in mind that skin renews itself at night and makeup sitting on your skin can interfere with the skin’s natural healing process and cellular turnover. So, remove your makeup as soon as you don’t need to have it on anymore and reapply your skincare on freshly cleansed skin. (This is what Matin’s celebrity and model clients do right after a shoot or wrapping on set and they never workout wearing makeup.)
8. Picking vs. practicing patience
It’s hard to resist picking when a breakout appears. Pimples never look good but they are certain to look worse if you pick which usually pushes the bacteria deeper into the skin. This can lead to infection and scarring. So keep your skin clean and reach for a spot treatment formulated with salicylic acid which is gentle on skin but tough on acne. If your diet is clean and you are avoiding all the mistakes mentioned above, your skin should be less angry in a couple of days.
9. Not picking just one feature only to accentuate when applying makeup
When wearing makeup, pick a single feature and enhance it. “Makeup looks vulgar and cheap when it’s applied all over like smokey eyes, red lips and pink cheeks all at once” says Matin. But if you concentrate on just one feature, you can’t go wrong and will always look chic.
10. Striving to be flawless
Don’t buy into the airbrushed ridiculously overdone, contoured, false lashes, stenciled brows. look. It looks crazy outside your Instagram feed. Forget “flawless”. Your “flaws” are what makes you interesting.