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You know something isn’t going right when your usual skincare routine isn’t working as well as it used to. It could be because your skin condition has changed or it could also be because you’re not using the products right. More often than not, we tend to get carried away after seeing visible results… Perhaps we should apply just a little more so our skin will be even better. Unfortunately (or fortunately, for our pockets), beauty products don’t work this way. “More” does not necessarily translate to “better” and in some cases, it could actually backfire.

Read on to find out what happens when we go over the top with the following beauty products.

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1. Cleansing brushes

using clarisonic

Whether or not it’s from Clarisonic, many of us have adopted cleansing brushes into our daily routine. These brushes cleanse our skin more thoroughly than our fingers can and give us clear and congestion-free skin.

Cleansing brushes provide a form of physical exfoliation. However, when used too excessively, they weaken our skin’s natural barrier. This makes our skin more sensitive and susceptible to bacteria and environmental damage. Our skin becomes red, tight and irritated, and may experience extreme dryness, flaking, itchiness, uneven skin tone and even appearance of rashes.

DV Tip: Always pick a cleansing brush that’s suitable for your skin type and use as instructed. Make sure that you monitor your skin well as YMMV (your mileage may vary) and clean the brush properly.

2. Serums and Moisturisers

applying moisturiser

Serums and moisturisers are a must-have in any skincare routine. When picked correctly, this duo can do amazing things to our skin. But this doesn’t mean that applying more would make our skin better.

There’s a limit to how much our skin can absorb. When we apply too much product, the excess sits on our skin and this can lead to oiliness, clogged pores and irritation. Also, layering on too many products can cancel out the effects of some, may affect our skin’s pH level and irritate our skin.

DV Tip: As a rough guide, the amount of serum you apply should be fun-sized like M&M’s and moisturisers should be no bigger than a 20-cent coin.

3. Silicone-based primers


Silicone-based primers fill up the uneven texture and fine lines in our skin, providing a smooth canvas for makeup to go on. It works by covering our skin with a thin layer and this helps to seal in moisture, which is actually a good thing.

However, detractors feel that it also keeps bacteria, dirt and excess sebum in. When not washed off properly, this can lead to breakouts and irritated skin. Prolonged use of silicone can lead to allergic reaction for some people, which may eventually develop into eczema.

DV Tip: Silicones usually exist as dimethicone or methicone on the ingredient list. They come in other names as well so look out for ingredients that end with “cone”. They most likely contain silicones too.

4. Hair masks

hair mask

Hair masks hydrate our scalps and can make dry and damaged hair silky-smooth again. But again, this doesn’t mean that we should mask our hair more frequently or use more product.

Usually, a little goes a long way for hair masks and if you’re using a conditioner on a daily basis, then applying a hair mask once a week (or as instructed) is good enough. Otherwise, our hair can get weighed down and become limp and lifeless. Our scalp might also end up producing excess oil.

DV Tip: If your hair feels greasy after masking, you’re probably using too much of it or using the wrong type of mask for your hair. When masking, try leaving it on for as long as 20 minutes or add some heat by blow drying it a little to reap the full benefits so it’s sufficient enough to last throughout the entire week.

5. Gel manicures

Gel manicures are the solutions for those whose usual manicures don’t last beyond two days. But as magical as they seem to be, gel manicures have their downsides too. Firstly, before our nails get dressed in pretty colours, they are first abraded with an emery board. Regular sessions of this will thin and weaken our nails. Secondly, most gel manicures are set with ultraviolet light and we all know that this can cause skin cancer. Lastly, to remove gel manicures, our nails are usually soaked in acetone which is very drying and can cause our nails to peel and become brittle. Regular gel manicures can lead to nail breakage and infection may occur.
DV Tip: Besides taking breaks in-between gel manicures, strengthen your nails and skin with a good moisturiser. Also, always remember to apply a sunscreen on your hands if your manicurist uses UV light to set gel manicures.
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