For my first blog post of 2014, I thought I would share some of the fascinating wisdom and expert advice I have read on the internet over the course of last year. Here goes:
- Use only water to clean your skin. Water alone will not cleanse your skin effectively. Water can dry the skin and strip away its natural oils. Wash your face twice a day. Never wash your face in the morning. Splash warm water on your face to open your pores and cold water to close them. Pores do not open and close; they don’t have muscles. Use warm water when cleaning your face – it allows you to clean more deeply. ALWAYS wash your face with cold water. Too-hot or too-cold water can irritate the skin.
- If you suffer from acne, avoid oil-based products. Oils are the best way to moisturize your skin, even if you have acne. Acne sufferers should cut out junk food. There is no proven link between food and acne. Milk and sugary foods increase the risk of acne.
- The skin is like a sponge; it absorbs everything. The skin is an efficient barrier to most things. At least 60% of what you put on your skin is absorbed. Hardly anything can pass through the skin’s layers into the bloodstream. [I explore this in more detail here].
- Artificial ingredients can be just as good as – or better than – natural ones. If it’s natural, it must be good for you. Just because it’s natural, it doesn’t mean it’s good for you! Avoid chemicals in skin care. There’s no such thing as chemical-free skin care. All chemicals are evil. Everything is made up of chemicals. [Here’s the proper explanation, courtesy of Herb & Hedgerow.]
- Only eat organic raw fruit and veg. Cooking food is vital as we can digest it more easily, thus getting more energy from our food. Heating food destroys its nutrients. Some fruit and veg are more nutritious when cooked. Homo sapiens survived and Neanderthals died out because the former could cook and the latter couldn’t. Cooking food makes it toxic. Some foods are toxic until cooked. Fruit and veg are full of sugar; you might as well eat chocolate and drink cola all day. Everything in moderation.
Confused, anyone? The truth is out there. Somewhere…
Of course, you will find conflicting advice on almost any topic you care to think of, because (luckily) we’re all different. What works for one person might work for the next; but it also might not. The internet has made information sharing so easy, and this is a Wonderful Thing. But there’s so much advice out there now, it can be hard to distinguish what’s worth reading and what’s not. Is it a hard fact or a personal opinion? Is the information coming from a reputable source? Are the claims backed up by proper scientific studies? It’s not always easy to tell. Whatever your health or skincare question, you’ll find someone, somewhere, with a definitive answer. Now look again: this time you’ll find someone else, somewhere else, with the polar opposite answer. Both would probably swear that their solution is the right one for you.
Moral of the story: Do your research before making any big changes in your life. There’s a rich source of information, advice and support at our fingertips and it would be foolish not to use it, but don’t put all your trust in a single source. And beware of statistics – they lend credence to an article, but not only can they be massaged to reflect the outcome desired by the writer, they can also be entirely made up!
Trust your instincts – after all, you know your own body better than anyone. Listen to your body and do what feels right for you. And don’t believe everything you read on the internet!
Have you got any other examples of conflicting skin care or health advice that you have read or received? Please share them in the comments below!