Self-sabotage of any kind is hard to admit.
How many times have you started to lose a little weight and then just when that gorgeous little black dress was feeling comfortable again you go and binge on chocolate? Or, finally, you’re making headway and getting a few things done at the office when you find yourself scrolling through Facebook or Instagram? I know. And relationships? Well, let’s not even go there!
And your skincare routine? Why isn’t it working? Could it be self-sabotage?
When it comes to our skin, to be fair, sometimes the saboteurs are not of our own making. You’re not feeling confident about you skincare decisions? Have you chosen the right products? The right ingredients? Doubt turns to fear, and before you know it, you begin to feel an uneasy disappointment.
It shouldn’t be complicated, but it seems there are so many ways to mess things up.
Part of the problem is getting the right advice, or perhaps too much advice. I mean, have you visited the internet lately? Of course, you have, that’s how you found me.
But seriously, overwhelm and confusion can leave you not knowing what to do.
If you feel this way, you’re not alone. Which is why today, I’d like to shed light on 8 things that could derail or sabotage your skincare results and why your skincare isn’t working as it should.
1. Mixing your brands to get better skincare results.
Just like making a complicated cake. You’re not sure you can pull it off, but you follow the recipe, and you take advice from those who know a thing or two about baking cakes. If you want success, you probably won’t skimp on essential ingredients or skip any of the necessary steps to cake baking success. And, unless your Nigella, you won’t mix up your recipes hoping for a better cake.
It’s like this with your skincare. Try not to mix your brands! You won’t get better skincare results.
Okay, if you’re a confessed beauty junkie and that’s your thing, then go ahead. But for everyone else? Find a brand and stick with them for at least 3 months.
If they’re good, the company or brand who make the skincare products will have a plan for you. Most good cosmeceutical brands develop their products synergistically—a system or group of products working together for the desired outcome. Better skin.
A poorly formulated or wrongly prescribed cleanser and an amazing state-of-the-art high performing serum will not be a match made in heaven. That’s just skincare sabotage and a waste of money.
A brand sincere in what they offer will gladly recommend how and when you should use their products. They can advise you on what’s best for night time versus day time applications, or what order your products should be layered and how much of each product you need. They’ll also offer sound and scientifically proven explanations for the ingredients you’re using and why. If they don’t do any of that? Well then, find a brand of skincare that will.
Most good cosmeceutical brands develop their products synergistically. Creating a system or group of products working together for a desired outcome.
2. You skip steps or skip it altogether.
If you’re getting started on a cosmeceutical skincare routine with active ingredients like Retinol and Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA’s) then it’s a good idea to start slowly, a couple of products at a time and usually on alternating days or nights of the week. This allows your skin to readjust, recalibrate and stay the course.
Once your skin begins to normalise and can tolerate more intensity in the active ingredients, it’s important to maintain the routine. Skipping your routine, or just slapping on a little moisturiser before going to bed is going to slow down your results considerably. Nothing works while it’s sitting on the bathroom cabinet shelf left to oxidise and become useless.
Nothing works while it’s sitting on the bathroom cabinet shelf left to oxidise and become useless. Right?
3. You’re not wearing enough sun protection.
If you’ve heard it once you’ve heard it a hundred times. Wear sun protection. Wear it 365 days of the year. Yep, even in winter. Sure, you may not be getting burnt during the winter months, but UVA rays (which are longer and penetrate the dermal layer of your skin), do not discriminate.
Don’t be fooled into thinking a cloudy day is a safe or UVA free day. This never happens! What does happen is damage to the DNA of your skin cells. Over time this damage accumulates in your skin, leading to wrinkles and pigmentation.
Skin damage you could have avoided. Find a sunscreen formulation you enjoy using and then stick with it. Every. Single. Day.
If you want to know more about the preventative powers of sun protection, you can go here and here.
4. There’s no Vitamin A in your daily routine.
So, if you’re still wondering whether you’ve finally found the holy grail of skincare, but you’re still not 100% sure? Here’s a simple little test. Does the brand you’ve chosen contain vitamin A in their formulations? If not, then they’re not serious about skincare results, and you’ll ultimately be disappointed.
Sure, if you’ve got a youthful skin with no specific issues, you can skip using vitamin A for a while, but if there’s room in your budget, then the sooner you introduce vitamin A into your routine the better.
Most skins are deficient in vitamin A, so as well as the reversal of DNA damage caused by the sun, using vitamin A regularly will top your skin up with an essential vitamin for skin health.
It’s important to note that not all topical vitamin A formulations are created equal, and you will need professional advice on the best for you.
Retinol, Retinyl Esters or Retinaldahyde are all good options. But they all work differently so seek out advice before you buy.
I’ve written about it in much more detail, and you can learn more about the best vitamin A for your skin and how it works here.
5. Perhaps your skincare isn’t working because you gave up and moved on. Again!
The best brand in the world; the one with vitamins A B3 & C as well as AHA’s and BHA’s and powerful antioxidants will be a complete loss to you if you give up after 3 or 4 weeks.
Sure, you started strong, you followed the routine religiously, you waited for the results, by around week 3 or 4 despite minor improvements you feel something is lacking? Don’t worry. If it’s a well-formulated cosmeceutical, it will perform. Keep going. Stick with it. This is a long game.
Check-in with the skin professional that made the recommendations they should be able to guide you in getting the best results.
Great skincare formulations are an investment. Great results are not always seen immediately. It’s your long-term commitment that will bring you the greatest rewards. Truly.
6. You just got bad advice or none at all.
This is a huge one. It’s an issue I’ve been known to rant about. For you, getting advice probably feels like a maze of confusion and misinformation.
No matter how good the brand. The truth is, even the best skincare requires good advice. So, if your skincare isn’t working it could be the advice or lack of it.
And, I’m not talking about a beauty influencer on Instagram. Not because they may or may not know what they’re talking about. But rather, their opinion is just that. You’re unique, and so is your skin and any advice should be based on your skin and the conditions that are concerning you.
A skincare professional doesn’t just know the skincare ingredients, they know the skin, and if they’re good, they’ll know which ingredients are going to help you.
The truth is even the best brands require good advice. And, if you dropped a weeks wages on your skincare? Well, you really deserve good advice!
Furthermore, if the person offering advice, doesn’t listen to YOUR concerns if they were rushed or didn’t have enough time to explain things properly or they just rattled off a few key benefits. Well, that’s not really going to help you.
Be fussy about who gives you advice. If they don’t have time or didn’t make time for you, then find someone else who will. If a brand is asking for a premium price, then you should expect (demand) a premium consultation. Right?
If getting great advice has proved difficult or you don’t know where to start, then you may want to book an online consultation with me. Find out more here.
7. You just opted for frown relaxing injections and dermal fillers.
Technically this is not sabotaging your skincare results. How-ev-errr…
If you’re really unhappy with how your skin is ageing, you might begin to believe it’s because your skincare isn’t working. And, if the lines and furrows make you look and feel unhappy, or grumpy or just in a permanent state of worry, then muscle relaxing injections and dermal fillers can make a big difference to your appearance.
When done correctly by an experienced cosmetic doctor, the results can be brilliant.
But wait! Hold on a second!
If your skin is as dry as the great Sahara desert or feeling as fragile as an eggshell or showing signs of blotchy brown patches of hyper-pigmentation, then you may well improve your furrowed frown with injectables, but you’ll not get the glow you’ve been longing for, nor will you be so pleased with the results of the injectables you’ve just had.
Cosmetic enhancement and good skincare should always go hand in hand. Always.
Most cosmetic medical practices know this and will offer a range of cosmeceutical skincare. If they don’t? Well, that’s not very reassuring, and I’d probably want to find another practice.
8. Smoking, sugar and alcohol will absolutely sabotage your skincare results.
If your skincare isn’t working, it may be something else entirely. Smoking, sugar and alcohol in excess will, without a doubt, ruin your skincare results as well as harm your overall health.
Your dermis needs a healthy blood flow, healthy moisture balance and nutrients in abundance. No amount of amazing skincare can fix the problems smoking, excessive sugar and alcohol can induce.
Smoking; despite the obvious harmful effects, can rapidly deplete the skins natural sources of vitamin C as well as suffocating the supply of blood to the dermis carrying these nutrients. Not good. I know, it’s hard, but try and give up; post-haste and watch your skin come to life.
Sugar; one of life’s delights, but in excess it can create a cascade of problems within every cell of the body including the cells of your skin where the glucose lingers and creates sticky cells leading to a process known as Advanced Glycation End products (AGE’s), it’s hard to avoid, in fact, it’s a normal process in the body. Even so, too much AGE’s and you’ll see a cross-linking of collagen in your dermis (wrinkles) that need not be there.
As for alcohol? In moderation, let’s say no more than one or two small glasses of wine a day, is probably okay. Most medical professionals will agree with this.
Even the occasional binge will be damaging to your skin. There’s no escaping the fact, excessive consumption of alcohol will dehydrate the dermis and sabotage your skincare results.
Your dermis needs a healthy blood flow, healthy moisture content and nutrients in abundance. No amount of amazing skin care can fix the problems smoking, excessive sugar and alcohol can induce.
And now you?
Hey, that was a long read. My hope is you found information that’s going to help you stay on the path to healthy skin.
But how about you? Have you found a great skincare brand that you’ve been able to stick with? Or, have you kicked a few habits that were sabotaging your results? I’d love to hear of your experiences or, if you have a question, you can shoot me an email here.
And, if you found this article useful, you might like to share it on your socials.
See you next time,