When the world went into lockdown nearly every aspect of our life changed, including our beauty regime. With nowhere to go and socialising limited to screens and phones most of us ditched the makeup and went for an au naturel look; after all what was the point of sporting an incredible smokey eye if no one was around to appreciate it?
Lockdown was also great for the DIY facial (it turns out nothing quite cures boredom or makes you feel like you’ve got your life together than popping on a face mask) so it was no surprise that people took to social media in their droves to show off their glowing, makeup free skin in all its natural glory.
It doesn’t take an expert to realise that no makeup equals great skin but what really happens when you ditch the foundation?
Here Are Five Benefits To Your Skin When You Go Makeup free
Our skin is our biggest organ; it’s covered in millions of pores (20,000 on our face alone!) which do a great job of regulating our temperature and keeping our skin naturally lubricated. When our pores are working correctly they keep our skin clean by expelling dead skin, oil and other gunk. Sometimes these pores can become clogged and instead of removing excess oil or dead skin this waste becomes trapped in the hair follicle, creating a build up of bacteria. This then leads to spots, acne and blackheads.
Wearing, and not properly removing, makeup is another way our pores can become clogged. If you find you’re suffering from breakouts your first step should be addressing your makeup and skin care routine. The chances are you’re either using the wrong products on your skin or you’re not removing them properly. Going makeup free means there’s no makeup to clog your pores allowing them to do their job and keep your skin clear and glowing.
2. Fewer Allergic Reactions & Infections
Makeup carries bacteria. Each time we use brushes that haven’t been properly washed or apply products with unclean fingers or use products that we’ve had for years we’re putting ourselves at risk of infection. Old mascaras, eyeshadows and eye pencils are breeding grounds for bacteria that can cause eye infections like conjunctivitis. While lipsticks and lip glosses can carry the herpes virus that causes cold sores, especially if they’re shared amongst people (I’m sure it doesn’t need saying but please, don’t share your makeup). Makeup can also be full of perfumes or chemicals which can irritate the skin, causing rashes and hives that are painful and not pretty to look at. If you’re suffering from dry, inflamed, or raised skin the chances are it’s from the products you’re putting on your face.
NO MAKEUP = NO INFECTIONS
It might sound obvious but when you stop wearing makeup you stop putting your skin at risk of infections. Going makeup-free allows your skin to heal and regenerate naturally so you’ll find you don’t actually need that concealer.
As lockdown lifts and normality resumes (and by that we mean having to wear daily makeup once more) clean out your makeup bag; throw away any old makeup that’s not been recently used. For many of us we’ve not so much as touched a mascara in months so now is a good time to clean out any products that have been gathering dust and bacteria.
3. Less Dry Skin
Dry skin is a problem many of us suffer from. There’s nothing worse than applying a full face of makeup only to look in the mirror to see its clung to dry, flaky skin. When our skin is good it makes a great foundation and starting base for makeup but when our skin is bad it only draws attention to the problems we were trying to hide in the first place.
Harsh products can strip the skin of its natural oils and moisture causing it to become dry and flakey. Even if we’ve got an in-depth seven step skincare routine and drink water by the gallon, we’re doing our skin a disservice if we’re still using cheap, drying makeup products. When you stop wearing makeup one of the first things you’ll notice is that dry skin clears up; without makeup the dead skin cells on our face can shed naturally allowing new cells to appear underneath which leads us nicely on to our next point…
4. Regenerating Cells & Balanced Skin Surface
Our cells are constantly regenerating and being replaced; shedding the old and revealing new radiant skin underneath. Wearing makeup can hinder this process, especially if we wear it for long periods of time or sleep in it. If we don’t remove our makeup properly we’re not sloughing off that dead skin and letting it naturally regenerate; this means our skin becomes dry, dull and tired looking. When our skin is free of makeup it can regenerate and rebalance naturally, giving us that dewy radiant glow.
Wrinkles And Fine Lines Become Less Obvious
We’re all so terrified of ageing that at the merest hint of a wrinkle we reach for the makeup and try to create a smooth surface by buffing away any lines . But this can have the opposite effect; instead products can gather in these lines making them look more pronounced than they actually are. Dark eye makeup can become smudged or bleed into the creases of our eyes, making them appear dark and fatigued.
Collagen and elastin are the proteins found in our skin that give it that bouncy youthful appearance. Although production of both naturally decreases as we age bad skincare habits, like sleeping in our makeup, can break down collagen and elastin compounds and speed up the ageing process.
5. Creating The Perfect Balance
Going makeup free can be an eye opening experience; having a makeup bag of products isn’t necessarily the path to radiant, clear skin. If you are still wanting to wear makeup try and adopt a 5:2 approach by giving your skin two days out of the week to breathe, rest and regenerate. Most importantly on the days you do wear makeup make sure you have a decent cleansing routine; it doesn’t have to take long or use expensive products just ensure that you remove all your makeup properly.
Think carefully about the products you use and try and favour organic or hypoallergenic products as much as possible. Try to learn more about your skin type and buy products that suit it best. If you have naturally oily skin you might want something more mattifying but if you have dry skin then naturally drying products will only make this worse. Learn about your skin and become conscious of the products you’re using on it.
Lockdown has been the perfect time to experiment going makeup free and letting your skin reap the benefits. As life slowly returns to normal many of us will find so do our makeup habits. While makeup can be great for boosting our confidence and letting us express ourselves creatively it can also be damaging for our skin and hide bigger issues we have with our body image. Ask yourself why you wear makeup; who is it for? What are you trying to cover? It can be a long and uncomfortable road but learn to embrace your natural skin and love the naturally beautiful version of you.