Are you a beauty myth victim?

June 8, 2015

Have a read through and see if any of these “Beauty Myths” apply to you. These are just a few of the thousands of skin care and personal grooming myths that people world wide devote their time to while producing negative results.

Preparation H deflates puffiness.

This is an old secret of makeup artists everywhere, and there’s a lot of opinion to suggest that this hemorrhoid cream can reduce under eye baggage, but no actual evidence and no clinical studies have been done. One of the product’s ingredients, a yeast derivative that is said to reduce puffiness, is no longer found in the version available in the States. (The cream was reformulated in 1994.) The other ingredient that is credited with reducing inflammation is phenylephrine, which temporarily constricts blood vessels. Nevertheless, using Preparation H around the eyes can cause dry and inflamed skin, thinning of the epidermis causing the skin to be translucent bluish looking. So use this only where it’s meant to be used.

Drinking water keeps your skin from drying out.

What keeps skin moist is oil, not water. Certainly, drinking water helps vital organs operate properly, and too little water in your body can give you a wan appearance. But your skin can still look dry even if you drink eight glasses a day.

Hair grows faster in summer than in winter.

Although studies have shown that men’s beards grow faster in summer, there is no evidence to suggest that the hair on your head does. Many women say they can tell it grows faster then, but if so, the difference is slight and barely detectable. The only time women’s hair has been proven to grow faster is during pregnancy, due to increased hormones.

Sleeping on your back or with a satin pillow will help your face stay wrinkle-free.

As you age, the collagen and elastin fibers in your skin break down, so when you burrow your face into a pillow, putting pressure on these fibers for several hours at a time, the skin is increasingly less likely to snap back. If you have a pattern of sleeping on one side, that side of your face will typically show more wrinkling than the other. However, the difference is very subtle. Learning to sleep on your back can help your skin a bit, but you’d fare much better wearing a good sunscreen every day than sleeping on a satin pillow.

Brushing your hair 100 strokes a day will make it shine.

One hundred strokes is too much. You’ll do more damage than good. Hair will break if you tug on it too much. However, gentle brushing — a few strokes here and there — will make hair shine by distributing the natural oils from the scalp down the hair shafts and flattening the cuticles to make them reflect more light. More significant, light brushing removes impurities and stimulates blood flow to the scalp, which nourishes hair follicles and keeps them healthy.

Applying cocoa butter or olive oil will stop stretch marks.

Stretch marks occur when skin expands quickly (as in pregnancy), breaking the collagen and elastin fibers that normally support it. Stretch marks are formed below the top layer of skin, where the cocoa butter and olive oil can’t reach. The most either can do is quell the itching that occurs when skin expands.

If you use wax to remove hair, fewer hairs will grow back.

Wax rips the hair out at the follicles and any repeated injury to the follicles over time — we’re talking 20 years — could damage some follicles to the point that they don’t grow back.  So use waxing for its ability to keep your skin smoother longer than shaving can, not for diminishing hair growth.

Putting Vaseline on your face nightly will prevent wrinkles.

Petroleum jelly is the strongest moisturizer there is because it forces oils into the skin and prevents them from evaporating.  As the skin ages, it loses its ability to retain moisture, and skin that’s dry looks older. Petroleum jelly can make wrinkles less apparent because it’s adding moisture to the skin, which softens lines, but it can’t actually prevent aging.

Shaving will make your hair grow back darker and thicker.

Hair that hasn’t been cut grows to a point. It’s widest at the base and narrowest at the tip. When you shave a hair, you cut it at the base. The widest part then grows out, and the hair appears thicker. But shaving doesn’t change the width, density, or color of hair.

Crossing your legs will give you varicose veins.

Sitting down and crossing your legs won’t cause varicose or spider veins, but standing may. Pronounced veins often crop up on people who either have a genetic predisposition to them or have jobs that require them to stand a lot. Standing makes the vascular network work extra hard to pump blood from the legs up to the heart. If the valves, which keep blood flowing in one direction within your vessels, aren’t functioning properly, a pooling of blood can occur and result in unsightly veins. Pregnancy, which puts added pressure on the circulatory system, or a trauma — getting hit by a softball or a car door, for example — can also lead to varicose or spider veins.