10 Bad Habits that Hurt Your Skin

You exfoliate, cleanse, and moisturize daily—and even stop yourself from popping those zits. But why is your skin troubling you every other week?

While your whole skincare routine is worth it, a few bad habits can creep in without you even realizing it. These bad skin habits might be stopping you from achieving your skin goals. 

This post will help you identify bad skin habits and break bad habits to achieve healthy, glowing skin. 

If you are taking care of your skin but still longing for that healthy glow, keep reading. 

10 Bad Skin Habits To Avoid

Your skincare routine can be on point, but there’s a fair chance that you might have adopted seemingly harmless habits. They are not only bad habits for health, but they can also sabotage your good skincare habits. 

Woman with glowing skin.

From skipping sunscreen to using too many products on the face, here are ten bad skin habits that you need to break to get glowing skin

Long Hot Showers

A long hot shower feels amazing at the moment, especially if you are sore from a workout. However, as good as it may feel, hot showers can harm your skin. 

Do you get those wrinkly fingers after a long hot shower? They indicate the stripping of moisture from your skin. So, if you shower longer in hot water, your skin will eventually get stripped of moisture and turn dry. 

Break the Habit

To break this habit, decrease the time you spend in the shower with each bath. You can keep track of the time by creating a playlist for the exact time you need to be in the shower. Step out when the playlist ends.

You can also find other ways to relax, such as yoga or massages. They are great to keep your skin glowing and serve as an encouragement to get out of the shower. 

Over Cleansing Your Face

Cleansing is no doubt the most important part of every skincare routine. But, while it may be surprising, there is a thing as too much cleansing. 

Going overboard with your cleanser can strip your skin of its natural oils, leaving it prone to dryness and more exposed to external aggressors. These factors may contribute to irritated skin, and that’s not what you’re looking for, right?

Break the Habit

To stop yourself from over-cleansing, skip cleansing in the morning and rinse your face with water only. You can save cleansing for your nighttime skincare routine when you need a deep cleanse to remove makeup, dirt, and oils from the day.

Skipping Sunscreen

If you skip SPF on days when your skin is directly exposed to the sun, your skin will suffer. Think sunburns, sunspots, signs of aging, and worse. 

So slather on your sunscreen, even on days when you will be staying home. If the sun is still shining through your window, the UV rays are touching your skin. Plus, don’t just put SPF on your face, but every part that will be exposed to the sun. 

Break the Habit

Skipping sunscreen is one of the bad skin habits you can break by doing the exact opposite, i.e., apply a lot of sunscreens. Depending on your sun exposure, pick a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or 50. You can place it somewhere you cannot ignore, like on your bathroom counter or near your car keys.

Apply a generous amount of sunscreen on your face and body. On days when you will be more exposed to the sun, reapply after every two hours. It might sound like a lot of effort, but it will pay off.

Popping and Squeezing the Skin

Popping zits and squeezing blackheads might be tempting, but these are among the bad skin habits that top our list. When you press a pimple, you are pushing the bacteria deeper into the skin. 

Aggressive squeezing may also scar skin tissue, doubling the healing time and causing skin issues such as hyperpigmentation.

Break the Habit

Solution? Stop inspecting your skin from up close every time you’re in front of a mirror. No matter how tempted you may be, leave that pimple alone. This way, it will heal much faster and won’t become a pain for you by leaving a scar. 

Layering Too Many Products

When it comes to skincare, sometimes less is better. While treating multiple skin concerns at once, there is a chance that some active ingredients will cancel out or double up others. 

Using many products at once raises the risk of an allergic reaction. If you ever get one, you wouldn’t know which product may have caused it. Alternatively, the products might not be penetrating your skin if you are layering too many at once. 

Break the Habit

Reduce your 10 step skincare routine to three or five products. Stick to those products for a while and observe their effect on your skin. Then, pick the ones your skin needs and save the rest for later. 

Also, before you put anything on your skin, do your research on it and see if it is compatible with the rest of your skincare routine. 

Not Washing after Sweating

After you break a sweat, your skin will need some rest, just like you. When you don’t wash your face, you let sweat, dirt, bacteria, and other impurities suffocate your skin by clogging pores. These seemingly small bad skin habits may lead to dullness, breakouts, and signs of aging over time.  

Break the Habit

Always wash your face after your workout and before leaving the gym. If you don’t have access to a sink, use a face wipe to remove that grime off so your skin can breathe again. 

Sleeping with Makeup On 

We all know those nights when you feel too lazy or tired to remove your makeup before bed. But there is no space for this bad habit because makeup, dirt, and oil can clog your pores and make your skin appear dull over time. 

Break the Habit

This is one of the bad skin habits that you can break without much hassle. Simply place micellar water or makeup wipes on your bedside, so you have no excuse to leave makeup on your face. On days when you don’t feel like getting up, use wipes to clean your face, but always make sure to sleep with clean skin. 

Forgetting Your Neck and Chest

Skincare does not end on your face. It extends to the neck and chest, and we often forget those parts. These areas are delicate and mostly exposed to the sun. 

They are also among the parts that show the first signs of aging. That’s why your neck and chest deserve equal attention as your face. They need the same amount of cleansing, hydration, and protection from the sun, if not more.  

Break the Habit

To break bad habits of skipping your neck and chest, extend every skincare treatment down to your chest. Next time, apply your cleanser, serum, moisturizer, and SPF to your neck and upper chest area. 

Staying up Late

A desk with a lamp turned on and laptop.

Our skin undergoes repair during our sleep. If you have a habit of staying up till late, your skin might not get a chance to repair itself. 

While pulling an all-nighter is not as bad, a lack of sleep over days and months can start to take a toll on your skin. It can cause stress in your body, which will have adverse effects on your skin. 

As you are hindering the time your body repairs itself, your overall cell turnover will also decrease over time. 

It can make your skin look tired, with puffiness under the eyes and a dull complexion in the short term. The long-term effects might include noticeable signs of aging, such as wrinkles and sunken eyes.  

Break the Habit

Staying up late is one of the bad habits for health you can fix in a matter of days. All you have to do is turn off the screen half an hour before bedtime and aim for nine hours of sleep. 

If you struggle to get a shut-eye, take a warm shower before bed to induce sleep. You will wake up feeling much better about your routine and, of course, your skin. 

Not Booking a Yearly Skin Check

Yearly skin checks are a must, no matter how good you are at self-examining your skin. When caught early, even the worst skin conditions are treatable. 

If you notice anything unusual on your skin, such as irregular lesions or new moles, visit your dermatologist right away. If nothing looks unusual, go for a skin check anyway. The professionals can examine hard-to-see areas and spots on your skin that might not be visible to you. 

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Break the Habit

Schedule a skin check every year and if you are forgetful, schedule it near an important day of the year, such as your birthday. 

If you think you might still not make it, book a skin check with your dermatologist right away.


Most of us are guilty of at least one of these bad skin habits. However, by making a few adjustments in your routine, you can achieve healthy, glowing, pimple-free skin. 

Remember, the secret to healthy skin is consistency. When you break bad habits, you develop good skin habits, and they will show results.

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