Skincare Trends Of 2021 That Might Be Damaging Your Skin

It's hard not to get swept up in beauty trends, especially when we see the same products or routines popping up on TikTok, Instagram, and in your friend's makeup cabinet. But just because it's popular, doesn't necessarily mean it's beneficial. Mariana Vergara, cosmetic dermatologist, says she's seeing a lot of patients who have tried some of the latest skincare tips and landed in her office with unwanted side effects.

The first thing she wishes her patients would avoid is the urge to DIY something that is usually done by a professional dermatologist or aesthetician. Because so many of us have been stuck at home for so long, at-home peels, facials, and other treatments might seem like a good idea, but unless you thoroughly research ingredients, processes, and possible adverse effects, you might want to wait until a professional can take the reins. Vergara says, "There are many self-proclaimed beauty gurus on social media, and with that comes a lot of misconceptions. Most patients are doing their skincare routines and at-home treatments without proper direction from professionals." 

She goes on to say that "with so many skincare products available, many patients don't know how to use them, which can be very harmful to their skin." She asks her patients to "send me their entire list of skincare products or their Sephora shopping list for me to go over with them. I like to educate them on what they should be using and how to use it."

Derma rollers

Another thing Vergara is sick of seeing in her office is side effects and damaged skin from derma rollers. We know, we know! It's tempting to buy those neat little microneedling rollers and attempt to DIY your way to skin perfection. But if you aren't doing it correctly, you could end up with breakouts, infections, broken capillaries, or damaged skin. 

Vergara explains, "This treatment is best if done by a professional. When we don't use the correct roller, it can be very damaging to our skin. Capillaries in our skin can break, and it can also damage our skin's protective barrier. If the skin is not cleaned correctly, it can cause infection. Also, if we don't use the proper serum for our skin, it can lead to breakouts." She further cautions us that, "If we are overly aggressive with our skin, it leads to inflammation and aggravated skin disorders such as hyperpigmentation and rosacea. While patients think they are doing themselves a favor, they are actually doing their skin a disservice."

Pore vacuums and dermaplaning

Another skincare device all over social media that is making Vergara crazy is the many incarnations of the pore vacuum. It's so grossly satisfying to watch the videos of people literally sucking blackheads and other pore cloggers out of their skin, but what you probably aren't seeing in these videos is the potential damage these harsh devices can cause to skin. 

Vergara says, "Many of these extraction devices are available on the market, and social media platforms like TikTok show so many people using this device at home. I've seen several patients come to my office with bruising and broken capillaries due to these intense devices, which are not necessarily suitable for every skin type." Yikes! 

Another at-home trend Vergara is concerned about is dermaplaning. According to Healthline, dermaplaning "is a cosmetic procedure that removes the top layers of your skin. The procedure aims to remove fine wrinkles and deep acne scarring, as well as make the skin's surface look smooth." Vergara says it "is another popular DIY trend where people need to be cautious before each use. This treatment is intended to be performed by a specialist, as people have cut and damaged their skin while treating themselves unsupervised."