Did you know that we touch our faces up to 23 times an hour? We do it a lot – resting the cheek on the back of our hands, scratching our foreheads and rubbing on our nose, all while turning doorknobs and typing feverishly on iPhones as our hands come in contact with germs.
We’ve all been taught the importance of washing our hands regularly during this pandemic. Still, the COVID-19 virus can live for several days on some surfaces and materials, increasing the risk of self-infection if you happen to come into contact with any contaminated area. But the relevancy of this harmful habit goes beyond just the current outbreak situation – it can transfer bacteria and allergens to your face which lead to skin irritation, inflammation, breakouts and acne.
Why is it hard to stop
Pay attention to how often you touch your face: wiping your eyes, scratching your nose, biting your nails, adjusting your glasses. Feelings of anxiety, embarrassment or stress increase the frequency of face touching. Sometimes, people do it subconsciously without intending to. It can be hard to quit this habit as face-touching brings people relieve from momentary discomfort like itches. This becomes a habitual response that can be resistant to change.
How to stop touching your face
It’s possible to reverse habits through specific training. Still, it relies on you acknowledging and noticing what you are doing. The next time you touch your face, try to understand why. Creating a physical record can help with the process by writing down each time you do so. This can help you to make any changes to your environment and reduce the likelihoods of you touching your face. Keep your hands busy with a stress ball or clench your first whenever the urge to touch your face strikes.
Sometimes, touching your face is just unavoidable. Applying makeup, flossing your teeth, shaving or putting in your contact lenses are all standard daily routines which, for the most part, we can’t change. The most important thing is to do so with clean hands. Educate yourself on the correct handwashing procedure by following one of the many instruction videos going around right now – chances are you might not be doing it correctly!
If you are unable to access clean water and soap in that moment, use a hand sanitizer or a piece to tissue to avoid using your fingers directly like removing hair from your face, or adjusting your glasses. Preventing the spread of COVID-19 is an important reason for change, but there are other reasons that are associated with keeping hands off your face.
It can affect your complexion
Touching your face can be bad news for your appearance. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, face-touching throughout the day can cause skin issues, especially if you have oily or acne-prone skin.
Touching can also transfer oil, dirt and bacteria from your hands to your face, leading to clogged pores, inflammation and breakouts. Existing P.acnes bacteria can also be spread around easily, trigging more inflammatory acne papules, pustules and cysts beneath and on the skin’s surface.
It’s recommended that you should only touch your face during your regular skincare routine with clean hands prior to application. You should already be familiar with the golden rule on pimple-popping – it can result in noticeable and permanent acne scars, and run the risk of causing another infection for more breakouts to appear.
Caring for your skin
As you try and reduce the frequency of touching your skin, it’s important to ensure your complexion remains clear and healthy-looking. At Adonis, we’re offering an affordable facial package to new customers at just $480 for 8 sessions (after 7% GST). This facial helps to draw out excess sebum and replenishes hydration to help you achieve a glowing, supple visage!