2nd May 2011

Beauty Myths Exposed

Remember when your Mum told you that eating carrots would help you see in the dark? Or that eating the crust of bread would make your hair curly? You believed it, didn’t you? And she may have been onto something with the carrots (they contain something called beta-carotene, which keeps eyes healthy)… The crusts, however, were a big fat lie to get you to eat your sandwich.

Things don’t get any less confusing as an adult… It’s hard to know what to believe and what to discard – especially in the world of beauty, which has its fair share of old wives tales to terrify and baffle in equal measure. So to ease your furrowed brow, I’m going to clear a few of those myths up for you pronto…
1 – Chocolate causes spots.
There’s no truth in this – so you can rest easy and keep munching through that bar of Dairy Milk… It may not be the most suitable inclusion to a healthy, balanced diet, but it isn’t to blame for your breakouts. You can blame spots on your skin type, skincare regime, hormones, and stress levels.
Tip: Exfoliate skin with a gentle skin scrub twice weekly during the warmer months to unblock pores and prevent further breakouts. Try Caudalie Gentle Buffing Cream, £16.70.

2 – Hair should be brushed 100 times before bed.
Step away from the hairbrush, as this is never a good idea! It will cause your locks to break and split, whilst also damaging your scalp. Try to limit your brush use to when you are styling your hair.
Tip: Swap to a brush with natural bristles, which is far better for hair and scalp. Mason Pearson Pure Bristle Handy B3, £68.75, may be pricey – but it’s a great long-term investment for your locks.

3 – Shaving makes the hair grow back thicker.
This isn’t true either. The reason why it feels thicker when it grows back is that the razor slices away the tapered tip of the hair and leaves only the thicker, middle section above the skin.
Tip: For the smoothest shave, make sure you regularly exfoliate legs to prevent ingrown hairs. A salt-based scrub, such as Jo Woods Everyday Organics Langa Exfoliating Salt Scrub, £24.51 – is ideal.

4 – Oily skin should avoid oil-based products.
Funnily enough, this is a myth too. If you try to strip your complexion of surface oil, the skin will think it’s drying out and continue to product sebum. A cleansing oil is also a really effective way to break down skin oil (without stripping it) and is also remarkably effective at removing toxins and dirt.
Tip: Switch to Dior Instant Gentle Cleansing Oil, £22.50, for a balanced, glowing complexion.

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