In the world where information can easily be derived from search engines in the internet, one would have difficulties in differentiating which skin care is a fiction and which skin care is a fact. Here are some truths debunking some of the popular myths about skin care
By Zharlah A. Gulmatico-Flores, MD, FPDS, FPADSFI
Fact: It may appear that the clouds block the sunlight during a rainy or cloudy weather however; clouds can only block the sunlight but NOT all the ultraviolet rays (UV) rays. Studies have shown that it may block at least 10-20 percent of UV rays but you can never get way with the 80 to 90 percent of the harsh effects of the sun. So the bottomline here, whatever is the weather, never forget to put on the sunblock 15 to 30 minutes prior to sun exposure.
Myth 2: I don’t need to use moisturizer because I have an oily skin.
Fact: Never confuse that an oily skin equates having a hydrated skin. Oil is different from water. A well-hydrated skin is a healthy skin. Dehydrated skin can lead to the penetration of allergens, bacteria, virus that may cause inflammation of the skin. For people with oily skin, you may have an option to use an oil-free and non-comedogenic moisturizer.
Myth 3: Eating chocolates will cause more breakouts.
Fact: The good news for those who love chocolates out there is—studies have shown that there is no association or correlation that links eating chocolates to the development of pimples.
However, splurging in a carbohydrate rich food, which are of high glycemic index in particular can significantly increase blood sugar levels which in turn, increase the body’s demand for insulin. This increase of insulin levels will cause the sebaceous glands to secrete lots of oil which would cause clogging of pores and eventually would cause inflammation, which are 2 the key players that caused acne. On a good note, dark chocolates has shown to have lower glycemic index, therefore, it will not cause the body to have increase demands in insulin and in turn, will not affect on the sebaceous glands.
Myth 4: Toothpaste can be used as a spot treatment for pimples.
Fact: Toothpaste contains ingredients such as menthol and whitening that can further irritate and harm the skin. The irritation brought about by these ingredients will cause more drying of the skin which will cause more penetration of the irritants and bacteria that will lead to more flaring and eruptions of new pimple lesions.
Myth 5: Frequent washing of the face will make my skin healthy and can improve my acne.
Fact: While washing can remove dirt and excess sebum from the face, frequent washing of more than three times a day can irritate and remove the essential lipids of the skin leading to the increase of “transepidermal water loss” which would result to the loss of moisture and dryness of the skin. Dryness and irritation can lead to inflammation which causes more breakouts.
Myth 6: Applying large quantities of skin care product will give faster and better result.
Fact: As quoted by Mark Twain, too much of anything is bad. Pea-sized amount of a skin care product is enough to address your skin’s concerns. Applying large amount may lead to dryness and irritation which eventually cause more skin problems.
Myth 7: Too much scrubbing and use of strong soaps will make the skin smoother and lighter.
Fact: Too much scrubbing with strong soaps will strip of the essential lipids that protects the skin. This will cause dryness, irritation and redness of the skin. It is better to always use a mild cleanser and should you want to scrub the skin, do it once every two weeks or at most, once a week.
Always remember that skin care routine is personalized. Not everything you read is applicable for your skin. Always get your facts straight, remember your skin is 90 percent of your selfie. To know which skin care suits you best, consult a board-certified dermatologist by the Philippine Dermatological Society.