As a Skincare Specialist, I Don't Like These 6 products

Oct. 19, 2020
Working as an esthetician in a high-end spa, you see a lot of people and a lot of stuff. Here are just a few examples of things that I saw damage many people's faces.
Biotin is touted as the "hair, skin, and nails" vitamin, but let me tell you why you should be cautious. If you've got acne-prone skin, stay far away from biotin. Acneic skin is predisposed to an over-production of keratin (hyperkeratosis), which can make it easier for pores to become clogged, leading to all types of acne. Biotin can increase keratin production, which might be great for our hair and nails, but for skin already over-producing keratin: It's a nightmare.
After having a negative experience with Biotin myself, I always ask my clients if they are taking it. A number of my clients who had stubborn acne stopped taking their multivitamins (that contained biotin) and I watched as their acne finally started responding to my treatments! A few of my guests' biotin induced acne just went away on its own. I understand that biotin can help acne in some, but it can cause more harm than good in others.
If you're acne-prone or just started breaking out, be sure to check your multivitamins. Biotin is in almost EVERY. SINGLE. ONE.
*Note: Be sure to check with your doctor first if they prescribed your multivitamin.
The Ordinary AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution (or other strong at-home peels/acids)
Hear me out- I don't really hate this product. I hate that people don't know how to use it. This product is extremely strong. 30% AHA?! A lot of people who impulse buy this product have never even used a 10% AHA on their skin before! Combined with the fact that many people leave it on longer than intended, use it too often, apply it to wet skin, or don't wear SPF daily, there are a lot of ways you can screw up your skin using this product. Your skin needs to build up a tolerance to strong exfoliants. As I said, I don't hate this product. It can just be dangerous and damaging if used incorrectly. Do your research and follow directions diligently before starting something this strong! I've seen enough compromised skin barriers from acids to know that using this product wrong is a really quick way to experience one for yourself.

Any acid or peel can be damaging if used incorrectly.

Pimple Popping Tools
When your dermatologist or esthetician uses these on you, great! They have been trained to do so. But I have seen a lot of unnecessary scars and indent marks on clients who have used these at home. It's really hard to tell when you've used too much pressure until it's too late, and now you've got a broken blood vessel on your nose. I don't even use them on my clients! Instead, I use a sterile lancet, gloves, and gentle pressure with my fingers. Every esthetician differs, but I don't particularly like pimple popping tools. They certainly gave me extra scars to treat for people over the years!

Proceed with caution when using these at home!

We all have products we will never use again. I am always trying new things, and I find that less truly is more in my own routine. Here are a couple of products that DID NOT work for me whatsoever. Keep in mind that just because these didn't work for me, doesn't mean they won't work for you!
*Note: I have an oily t-zone, normal cheeks, and am quite reactive so I breakout easily from certain products/ingredients.
Paula's Choice Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum
I was really excited to try this product because I'm a huge Paula's Choice Stan. A lot of my staples are from Paula's Choice. This serum has a lengthy list of good ingredients including antioxidants, plant extracts, and ceramides. TOO many. I don't think my skin was able to process all of the actives. It broke me out pretty bad after only 4 uses. I broke out in painful, red papules that left post-inflammatory erythema (red scars). Despite being marketed for dry skin, it also caused my skin to become extremely flaky and dry. I will say that I enjoyed the texture of the serum quite a bit, which made it sadder that I could not use it.
Banila Co Clean It Zero Cleansing Balm
I'm slowly trying to transition my skincare routine to cruelty-free, and the Banila Co was my first attempt at replacing my Clinique cleansing balm. The Banila Co cleansing balm had a nice texture but had a weird, strong chemical fragrance. It's odd for a cleanser to break you out because it's not in contact with your skin for very long, but this cleansing balm still managed to break me out in itchy, red acne! Other than fragrance being fairly high on the ingredient list, the rest of the ingredients are alright. It just didn't work for me.
What I love and have been using since is Kose Softymo Deep Cleansing Oil. I'm still on the hunt for a good, cruelty-free cleansing balm, so if you have a favorite please let me know!
Garnier Micellar Water ( Waterproof/Blue Cap)
I really like the original Garnier Micellar Water, but the waterproof version left a heavy film on my skin that led to itchy, fungal breakouts, even after using an actual cleanser afterward. I've had a couple of clients make a switch from the blue cap to the pink cap with good results as well! The ingredients between the two differ quite a bit, using different surfactants and moisturizing agents. But all in all, the original micellar water worked well for my skin, but the waterproof version just caused a mess of issues for me.
Final Thoughts
What is a product that other people love but you cannot stand?
Best Reviews
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