12 Bad Beauty Habits to Break in 2012

Freshly cleaned brushes laid out to dry—took 10 minutes to clean them!

As 2012 approaches, we’re starting to think about the year ahead and our hopes for it—including the habits we want to give up. Here are 12 bad beauty habits to break next year.

  1. Sleeping with your makeup on. Even if you use natural or organic makeup, it’s best if you take off the makeup you’ve worn all day before your head hits the pillow. Sleeping in your makeup can cause breakouts, but it also means you’re not using any restorative and soothing nighttime treatments that can help your skin regenerate while you snooze.
  2. Not cleaning your makeup brushes. It helps them last longer, work better and gets rid of the oils they pick up from your skin, which contributes to breakouts. We shared two brush-cleaning techniques back in October—they’re both pretty quick!
  3. Washing your hair every day. Julie says if you’re washing your hair more than twice a week, you’re probably over-cleansing. She recommends wetting your hair and using just conditioner on the days between shampoos—just be sure to rinse well. (Her favorites: Max Green Alchemy Scalp Rescue Shampoo and John Masters Lavender and Avocado Conditioner.)
  4. Not getting enough sleep. Don’t take your sleep for granted—without it, it’s harder for your body to function. And it’s while you sleep that your body has a chance to regenerate and repair your skin cells. Less sleep=faster aging.
  5. Forgetting your sunscreen (even on cloudy days). Sun damage causes wrinkles, sun spots and potentially skin cancer. Don’t neglect it!
  6. Neglecting your decolletage and hands. The cleavage and hands are the first parts of the body to show signs of aging. Both are often overlooked, but the thinner skin in both of these places can start to show sunspots and wrinkles before the rest of your body. Keep them moisturized and protected from the sun.
  7. Not reading the ingredients lists on your cosmetics. In the U.S., testing of cosmetics is voluntary—that means the burden is on you as a consumer to take responsibility for protecting yourself. Not sure what to look for? Check out my natural beauty philosophy, and spend some time with the Skin Deep Database, where you can look up every ingredient.
  8. Hanging on to old makeup. Old cosmetics—whether conventional or natural—are not good for your skin. If it’s expired, toss it.
  9. Not drinking enough water. Dehydrated skin is dry and dull. Drink up for healthier, more glowing skin from the inside out. (My favorite trick: Add a few slices of cucumber to your water for an extra refreshing drink. You can even make a whole batch by slicing up some cucumber and chilling your water in the fridge overnight.)
  10. Pulling your hair into tight ponytails. This bad habit gives Julie nightmares. “I have so many clients with longer hair; they’ll get in my chair and they’ll have this line of breakage right at the crown,” she says. To fix, don’t put your hair into a ponytail when it’s still wet (and at its weakest)—ever. “I always tell clients, make sure any type of ponytail holder that you’re using are extremely gentle.”
  11. Not getting enough vitamin D. It’s the only vitamin our bodies can produce (with the help of the sun), but if you’re putting on sunscreen the way you should, you might not be getting enough. To get more vitamin D in your life, eat good-for-you foods like oily fish (think salmon). I also take an Omega-3 supplement with fish oil and evening primrose oil.
  12. Not exercising enough. Exercise increases blood flow, helping to nourish skin cells, provide oxygen and carry away waste products. (Just be sure to wear sunscreen if you exercise outdoors!)

Have you made a beauty resolution for 2012? —Aleigh

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2 Comments on 12 Bad Beauty Habits to Break in 2012

  1. Lindsey @ Lindsey Living said on

    I don’t have cleavage, but I should probably start moisturizing the area where it would be if I had it:) also to add to your “keeping old cosmetics” habit, might I suggest recycling them! Take your empty and almost-empties to any Origins store or counter and they will take care of it for you!

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  2. indigo+canary said on

    Ha, Lindsey — yes, you should. :)

    Recycling those old cosmetics bottles and containers is the best plan. I suppose I should’ve clarified that when I say “toss” I mean “into the recycling bin”! Lots of companies are doing that nowadays, but you can do it yourself if you just give the containers a quick rinse to get the last bits of product out.

    —Aleigh

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