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5 TikTok Skincare Hacks to Reconsider Before Adding Them To Your Routine

5 TikTok Skincare Hacks to Reconsider Before Adding Them To Your Routine

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How many times have you opened TikTok, Instagram, or any social media platform and been fed tips, tricks, and hacks that claim life-altering benefits? From unconventional recommendations like drinking chlorophyll water to simple suggestions like heatless curls, a variety of life-hacks are constantly flooding our feeds. But how do we differentiate the legit hacks from the misleading tips that could even be harmful? To help, we’re breaking down 5 popular skincare hacks and whether they’re worth implementing into your skincare routine. 

Skincare Hack #1: Drinking Chlorophyll For Clear Skin

@caveaesthetics

Chlorophyll Giveaway On IG: @ninetysixjewellery honestly changed my skin & I want to help someone else with acne!🌱💦 #chlorophyll #chlorophyllwater

♬ original sound – Risky

The skincare trend of drinking chlorophyll water has been around since early 2021, yet doctors have disagreed with the purported benefits connected to the trend. Dermatologist Dr. Dhaval Bhanusali talked with Allure in 2021, essentially saying that there is little evidence to support the idea of chlorophyll treating acne. Chlorophyll has been used in photodynamic therapy as an applicant to the skin, but that is significantly different than the actual consumption of chlorophyll. Frequent consumption of chlorophyll water can also cause several side effects including nausea, vomiting, and stomach cramps. 

Ultimately, even if ingesting chlorophyll were enough to transform skin, there is still no need to purchase chlorophyll drinking mixes; every green we eat has plenty of chlorophyll to hypothetically generate the same result.

Skincare Hack #2: Face Slugging

Slugging is the skincare method of slathering your face in petroleum jelly overnight for glowy and moisturized skin. This skincare trend has flooded through social media, especially on TikTok, but is it really the best idea? For some, it might be a beneficial addition to their skincare routine, but there are circumstances in which slugging should be avoided.

In dry winter months, slugging can help restore and maintain moisture, but in humid months, adding slugging to your skincare routine is typically unnecessary. Individuals with oily skin, acne-prone skin, and/or infected skin should not slug because the petroleum jelly will close up and potentially clog pores. 

If you do decide to add slugging to your skincare routine, you should consider the petroleum jelly that you are using; dermatologist Dr. Kassouf suggests using pure forms of petroleum jellies like Vaseline, or alternatives like Aquaphor and CeraVe, which have minimal additives like ceramides and hyaluronic acid. 

Lastly, when slugging, it is important to not use skincare products like Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA), Beta Hydroxy Acid (BHA), and retinoids because they will get trapped under the petroleum layer, irritating the skin. Ultimately, slugging presents no harmful side effects or unwarranted results, but it is a circumstantial moisturizing technique that should be thoroughly considered before making it a regular step in your skincare routine.

Skincare and Hair Hack #3: Rice Water for Hair Growth

Since hair is technically a type of modified skin, we thought we’d fact-check this hack, too; washing your hair in rice water has come up again and again on all of our feeds, claiming it will make you the next Rapunzel. But will it?

The reason people have been using rice water in their haircare routine is because rice releases a starch that acts like a conditioner, protecting the follicles from rubbing against one another which causes split ends. Rice water is full of antioxidants like Vitamin B, Vitamin E, Magnesium, fiber, and many more, but dermatologist Dr. Khetarpal concludes that there is no scientific evidence supporting the claim that implementing rice water in your haircare routine is a true hair growth agent. 

Dr. Khetarpal takes it a step further, including that haircare practices are typically very minor components of healthy, long hair. Research even indicates that people suffering from scalp inflammation should not use rice water as it can irritate it further. For the most part though, similar to slugging, there are no harmful effects of using rice water for haircare, and using rice water can promote shinier hair.

Skincare Hack #4: Nasal Tanning Sprays

@lizzieburnettofficial

No filters just straight science & results! I was told it takes about two weeks this is just ONE WEEK of using the spray #tanning #nasaltanning #results #realreaults

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♬ Standout – Kid Dean

Another big skincare trending product has been nasal tanning sprays which feature melanotan II, a synthetic ingredient made to replicate hormones in our bodies. Melanotan II is illegal for sale in all 50 states, and countries worldwide, but inhaling this chemical has become a tanning “hack”. 

Essentially, people are inhaling melanotan II so it goes directly into the bloodstream, increasing the production of melanin which gives their skin a darker tint. Although it might seem harmless, melanotan II is associated with the skin cancer known as melanoma, as well as acne, nausea, vomiting, and a sudden increase in moles and freckles. Overall, this skincare trend is an absolute and total no because of the copious harmful side effects and long-term effects. 

Skincare Hack #5: Using Retinoids and Retinol

@livvywolfie

Ive been using the Medik8 Retinal 6 after a terrible experience with tretinoin 🥲 & my skin is loving it!! #retinoid #retinol #retinal #retinolserum #retinolresults #acnetransformation #hormonalacne #hormonalimbalance #medik8 #medik8skincare

♬ STREAM RENAISSANCE BY BEYONCÉ – norah

Finally, we bring up the use of retinoids and retinol in skincare routines, which are topical treatments for acne, anti-aging, and wrinkles. Dermatologists are the ones who can prescribe skincare products like retinoids, but several brands sell over-the-counter retinoids you can pick up at drug stores (La Roche-Posay, Paula’s Choice, etc.). 

But there are skin conditions that are incompatible with strong retinoids. People with dry skin, sensitive skin, skin allergies, and even skin color should consider these risks: hyperpigmentation, especially with darker skin tones, dryness, and damage to dermal barriers. 

Retinoids are typically unnecessary for teenagers, besides acne treatments from dermatologists. Even then, dermatologists will typically start patients needing strong skincare products like retinoids with percentages as low as 0.2% in their prescribed retinol topical ointments. All in all, retinoids present no harmful effects when used correctly, but are rarely required as a daily step in your skincare routine. 

To avoid or not to avoid? The big skincare question.

While the only skincare hack to absolutely avoid is the nasal tanning spray, it is important to know what chemicals, risks, and effects come with your skincare routine products/methods, especially when following skincare trends you’ve found on social media. Influencers or brands promoting the skincare hacks may leave out the risks and side effects (or don’t even have proof that the tip works). When it comes to your skin, it’s always a good idea to contact a dermatologist or trained professional before implementing new products or rituals into your skincare routine! 

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