Mistake 1: Applying moisturizer directly to dry skin
“Think of your skin like a sponge— if it’s damp, products can better penetrate and absorb,” says Heyday Skincare Educator Chrissy Carrano.
The same rings true for your skin. So make sure right before you slather on your moisturizer that you first apply a toner, serum, or even just splash your face with some water. However you do it, just make sure your skin is damp as you apply a moisturizer, so it can really do its job.
- One of our favorite thirst-quenching combos? Spritz skin morning and night with a hydrating mist like the CoQ-10 Toner immediately followed by the Water-Lock Moisturizer, a skin barrier repairing gel-cream that both primes and locks in moisture.
Mistake 2: Avoiding facial oils if you have acneic or oily skin
“Lots of clients with congestion are terrified to use anything they think is going to make them break out,” says Chrissy. “But, it’s important to know that not all oils are created equal. There is an oil and a moisturizer for every skin type and condition.”
When it comes down to it, everyone can benefit from facial oil as a both moisturizing and goal-oriented product. The handy filters on our site let you pick products perfect for your skin type, and these two oils are a great place to start as well:
- Pai Skincare’s Rosehip BioRegenerate Oil contains rosehip oil, which is excellent for inflamed, breakout-prone skin.
- Indie Lee’s Squalane Facial Oil contains squalane oil, which boosts hydration to support skin's barrier function without clogging pores or encouraging bacteria production.
Mistake 3: Using retinol incorrectly
“Many people are aware this is a powerful anti-aging product, but not everyone understands just how hard it’s working—from rapidly turning over skin cells to rebuilding your collagen from within.” says Chrissy.
Retinol is one of our all-time favorite skincare ingredients, as it treats everything from acne to fine lines. However, as some retinol users can attest to, it can sometimes lead to irritation. So with that in mind, proceed with care when incorporating retinol into your routine:
- Take a progressive approach. Also known as going “low and slow,” begin by using retinol once per week, gradually increasing by one day every week or so, giving your skin time to gauge its response.
- Mix with caution. When using retinol with other ingredients in your routine, like other exfoliants and Vitamin C, you’ll want to tread lightly and avoid applying them during the same routine.
- Maintain hydration. Moisturizing twice a day is key, and for extra credit, add in a hyaluronic acid serum to keep hydration sealed in so retinol can work its magic without overdrying your skin.
Mistake 4: Doing your own extractions
“This is something we all know we shouldn’t do, but sometimes still love to do,” says Chrissy.
While popping your pimples or squeezing out blackheads might be satisfying in the moment, it’s better to leave extractions to a pro. Picking your skin can slow down the healing time of the breakout, spread bacteria and oil causing more acne to form, and lead to scarring. Our pros are trained to perform extractions without these negative side effects, as they use both oil cleansing and facial massage to safely extract congestion. And while it’s best to leave extractions for your facial, there are still many ways to keep skin clear between facials:
- If your goals are mainly to treat blackheads, fine lines, and/or dehydration, the Dermapore Pore Extractor & Serum Infuser is adept at exfoliating, clearing debris from pores, and enhancing the penetration of active ingredients.
- If you are more focused on treating breakouts, blackheads, and hyperpigmentation, Acid Potion is your one-stop shop for clearing follicles of debris and bacteria while promoting rapid cell turnover.
Mistake 5: Making it a goal to achieve poreless skin
“Porcelain skin is not a realistic skin goal. We all have different skin, and depending on your oil production levels, your pores will be more or less visible. Pore size isn’t something you can change,” says Chrissy.
Pore size is determined by genetics, so you can’t actually shrink them. Collagen loss via aging and exposure to UV rays and pollution can cause pores to increase in size, but despite what you’ve heard, they can’t shrink. And that’s okay! We all have pores, and “flawless,” glass-like skin is only attainable via photo retouching.
- Wearing sunscreen every day and exfoliating with a salicylic acid-based product a couple times a week are the best ways to protect the integrity of your pores.
- Temporarily refining pores is also always an option, so look no further than a tinted/mattifying sunscreen like Mineral Tinted Face Sunscreen or Mattescreen SPF 40.