It’s the myth that your mum’s been telling you for years: but how true is it? Actually, shaving won’t make hair grow back thicker or darker – although it might appear that way, which is probably where the myth began. Think of a strand of hair as starting thicker at the follicle, and tapering off to a point towards the end; when you shave, you’re essentially cutting the hair off at almost the thickest point, which is why it can look thicker or more coarse when it grows out. With waxing, you’re ripping the hair out from the root – which is why the regrowth for waxing can appear to be a bit thinner.
Okay – it’s taken me ten years to recover from the pencil thin eyebrows I sported as a teenager, I’m taking no risks now. So, what are the rules when it comes to tweezing? It’s much debated, but the general consensus is that it’s fair game to pluck out any stray hairs lurking above the eyebrow area, but don’t shape them from above (as the shape is best achieved when it’s tweezed, threaded or waxed on the underside of the eyebrow). Me? I’ll still be playing it safe and popping to the salon.
I get it – when you’re trying to grow your hair the idea of cutting it off every 6-8 weeks seems counterproductive at best. So is there any truth in this? In short – no, cutting your hair won’t make it grow quicker (as hair growth is all determined in your follicles, which aren’t affected during a trim). But it will get rid of your split ends, which ultimately keep your hair healthier and will prevent breakage (which is the leading cause of hair looking thinner and shorter at the ends, fyi), so don’t miss out your next trim for this reason.
Okay, there’s a bit of truth in this one. So your nails don’t need to breath per se – they are made of up keratin, and receive the oxygen they need through your bloodstream – so rest assured, your gel mani appointment won’t interfere with this process. However, it’s still a good idea to give them a break now and then as regular manis mean regular nail polish removal, and the acetone used to take off your polish can lead to nails becoming dry or brittle. So to keep your nails healthy, a nail polish holiday is a wise idea.
Hands up, who tried this growing up? Well, in case you hadn’t already worked it out, Vaseline unfortunately won’t help your eyelashes grow – although it can help to keep them moisturised, which is the key to healthy eyelashes that won’t break off when you’re taking your makeup off or curling your lashes (the horror). Castor oil will also help to condition your lashes, but if it’s natural length you’re after, you might want to look at an LVL treatment. Fake it til you make it, folks.
Say it ain’t say so – if we live in a world where I can’t have clear skin and a bar of Galaxy, count me out. Luckily, there isn’t a huge amount of truth to this one – while chocolate does get a bad rep in this department, it's more likely that the sugar and fat in the chocolate bar is the spot causing culprit here, as high sugar/fat diet can lead to an increase in sebum production. This means that chocolate alone won’t cause acne, especially in moderation (if you insist). So you can still indulge in a bar of chocolate, just make sure to keep a healthy diet and water consumption otherwise. Life is all about balance, after all.
Oh – to be fifteen again. Of course, we know now that as a general rule of thumb, if it’s not designed to go on your skin, you probably shouldn’t put it on there. Toothpaste was created to clean your teeth, and while the ingredients in toothpaste can dry out spots, it can also seriously irritate your skin, even causing acute burning – not the look you were going for. For spot prevention, there are better measures you can take, so step away from the toothpaste and opt instead for a topical treatment containing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid.
Much like your nails, your skin doesn’t breathe – you’ve got your lungs for that, after all. And as long as you’re wearing the right kind of foundation for your skin type, your skin shouldn’t have a problem, in fact the right makeup can actually provide a barrier against the pollution and dirt accumulated during the day. Just make sure to always take your makeup off at night with a good cleanser, as this can lead to clogged pores, and will also allow your skin a chance to shed dead skin cells.
Pores ain’t doors, I’m afraid. While hot steam or a cold shower can change the appearance of your pores slightly, unfortunately it won’t get rid of them – they’re simply part of your skin. Still, if you’re intent on concealing them (although, you’re gorg as you are), then there are some tricks you can try, such as using the right exfoliating acids, or regular trips to the salon for a facial peel, both of which can shrink their appearance over time.
We’ve just debunked the biggest beauty myths
When it comes to the world of beauty, there’s an awful lot of old wives’ tales doing the rounds. And if, like me, you spent your teenage years rubbing Vaseline onto your eyelashes long before the Internet finally came along to finally answer all your beauty woes, you’ll know that even the most bizarre sounding beauty hacks will have you piqued in the quest for the perfect eyebrows, or longer lasting hair removal. With so much conflicting information out there, we’ve tried to help save you a bit of time, money (and confusion), by compiling and answering some the most common misconceptions about beauty – and about time, too.
By Danielle Petch
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