The skin is the largest organ of the body and it protects us from the outside elements, so it’s important that we protect our skin in return. However, sometimes it’s hard to differentiate fact from fiction, so Health & Beauty is here to debunk 8 myths about daily skin care!

#1 Water is all you need to wash with daily


Sometimes water may not be enough to remove the dirt and grime you’ve accumulated after a day out. If you’ve got oily skin, water might not be able to remove the oil effectively.

It’s best to get rid of dirt and makeup using a cleanser and toner and finish up with moisturizer.

Of course, it does depend on your skin-type – some people may have more sensitive skin and would do better without facial products that may be too harsh, and the water-only or even no-washing method (heard of the caveman regimen?) may even work for them.


#2 Sunscreen is only for beach days, not for everyday use


The sun does not take a break just because you’re not on a beach holiday. The World Health Organisation noted that almost 80% of UV rays can penetrate your skin if you are outside, even on cloudy days!

You may think that being cooped up in office keeps you safe from those evil UV rays, but brief moments of walking outdoors to your favorite hawker center, or to the bus stop can cumulate into the significant damage that can lead to more serious outcomes.

Skin cancer is the 6th most common cancer in Singaporean males and 7th most common in Singaporean females. So put on that sunscreen and protect your skin cells from harmful UV radiation.

#3 Darker skin means you won’t get sunburnt – or skin cancer


Although having a darker skin pigmentation may mean that you have more melanin to protect against UV rays, you aren’t immune to the nasty effects of the sun.

In fact, by falsely believing that people with darker skin tones are not at risk, skin cancer may be diagnosed too late. Your tolerance may be higher, but you may still have genes that are more susceptible to skin cancer.






#4 Dark eye circles? That means you don’t sleep enough!


The next time someone calls you out for not sleeping enough as evident from your dark eye circles, tell them that that’s not the full story.

Genetics plays a big part in the formation of periorbital dark circles, which are due to blood vessels and blood being more visible under the thin layer of skin beneath the eyes.

Due to that layer being thin, it is also more susceptible be hyperpigmentation (darkening) caused by the sun. Make sure to use a suitable facial sunblock that’s friendly to the eyes.

For those that put on makeup over that area, make sure to rub your skin gently when removing make-up. Rubbing too hard may cause inflammation and damage to the capillaries, which in turn may cause darker circles.

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#5 If your pimples are white, it’s time to pop them


Popping pimples leaves your skin damaged and vulnerable to bacteria, and at risk to infection and inflammation. Inflammation can lead to scarring or Post Inflammatory Hyper-pigmentation (PIH) which can cause discolouration.

Leave the pimple to live out its lifespan, or leave the work to the professionals!

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#6 In humid countries, moisturiser is just for the face


Body moisturisers may be a necessity – depending on your skin type, age and skin condition. Moisturisers are essential for skin cell repair, much needed if you shave and wax frequently, as it aids the skin barrier function.

For people with eczema, it is advisable by dermatologists to look for body moisturisers containing paraffin and glycerin, and that have a more acidic pH that matches the skin.


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#7 It’s advisable to exfoliate your skin every single day


As much as exfoliation gets rid of that pesky dirt, it also rids you of the good stuff. This can leave you with dehydrated, dry and flaky skin.

The destruction of the natural oil layer that keeps moisture in and the inflammation caused by removing healthy cells can lead to ageing of the skin and discolouration.

Experts advise exfoliating 2 – 3 times a week for normal skin, and once a week for sensitive skin.

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#8 Oily skin is bad and needs constant cleansing


Oily skin may be a real annoyance, and it can get much worse in Singapore’s hot weather. Heat causes increased production of sebum, and since our pores can only hold so much oil, it ‘overflows’, causing that oily skin type.

You may be tempted to constantly cleanse to get rid of the oily feeling, but over-cleansing will not only strip essential lipid layers but also cause the oil glands to produce even more oil. Experts advise to keep the cleansing to once or twice a day. Use an oil blotter to remove unwanted shine.

Remember that natural oils aren’t your enemy! They help to lubricate the skin and buffer you from external debris. A study done in 1999 even showed that oil glands deliver the natural antioxidant, vitamin E, to our skin. See, it’s not ‘oil’ that bad!