5 Hygiene Mistakes We're Making During Self-Isolation Which Damage our Long Term Health

Published on May 15, 2020

Good news: the Circuit Breaker has gotten community transmission numbers down to single-digits! With infections decreasing drastically, it's obviously a sign that all of us are now practising much better hygiene....right?

Wrong. In fact, the world is in need of a bath. According to Unilever (one of the world's biggest manufacturers of soap, shampoo and deodorants) personal hygiene has hit an all-time low. As reported by Financial Times, people are washing their hair less often, putting off shaving...even cutting out bathing altogether.

While friends and colleagues thankfully can't smell us from across Zoom chatrooms, here are some personal hygiene habits that people slip up on during self-isolation, not realising this will have long term impacts on their health. 

1. Not brushing your teeth

Of all the hygiene habits that people have been giving up, this might be the worst choice. And it isn't just fresh breath or a gleaming smile you'll miss when you stop brushing: Researchers have also discovered that people who don’t brush their teeth regularly were up to 65 percent more likely to have Alzheimers or dementia and had increased chances of contracting pneumonia! Other studies show that people whose inadequate oral hygiene has led to gum disease are twice as likely to have coronary artery disease too. Meanwhile, expectant mothers with poor dental health often give birth to children who are more likely to develop cavities, have lower birth weight and preterm birth. Who knew that not brushing your own teeth could even affect the next generation?

Recommendation: Brush your teeth at least 2-3 times daily (one of them before you sleep!) to keep yourself - and maybe even your possible offspring - protected. 

2. Not washing your hair

Since you're practically unidentifiable behind a mask, who cares if you schlep around with greasy, unwashed hair?

Your scalp, that's who.

Scalp Analysis at Papilla Haircare

Scalp Electroporation at Papilla Haircare

It is possible that people in drier climates wash their hair less frequently but our humid weather means that oil, sweat and environmental pollution will build up in your scalp faster than usual. Leaving it there for too long will clog your pores, causing hair fall and other scalp problems. If you don't already know, hair can grow from each hair follicle only 5 times in its life. Causing any of your five allocated strands to fall prematurely due to bad hygiene will only cause you much distress and unnecessary money spent in the future.FYI, Dry Shampoo is not really a shampoo either and can aggravate the scalp build up, so do avoid it if you can!~ Calvy from Papilla Haircare

Recommendation: Even if you're feeling lazy and don't do much activity, wash your hair AT LEAST once a day. Wash twice or more if you're going for those free IG workouts we talked about. 

3. Skipping sunscreen

Working from home has its pros and cons, but to many of us, one of the biggest pros is not having to get all dolled up. You may be surprised how many Beauty Undercover team members have been delighted to put on zero makeup while embracing a wardrobe consisting entirely of pyjamas or activewear.

Sunscreen Application

Since we're not heading out, does that mean that we can skip applying sunscreen?  Apparently not, since the professionals tell us it's a major part of our dermatological hygiene. 

A lot of people think that you don't need to wear sunscreen when you're indoors. But did you know that most glass windows block UVB but not UVA rays that penetrate deeper into the skin to cause pigmentation spots, wrinkles and rough skin? It can also cause higher chance of skin cancer.So if you stay in a room with lots of sunlight, remember to put in SPF once every 2-3 hours. ~ Anna from Indulgence Beauty

Recommendation: If you stay in a room with lots of sunlight, remember to put on that SPF once every 2-3 hours. 

4. Not cleansing your face thoroughly

Just because you're staying home, and maybe waking and sleeping a lot later than you once did, doesn't mean you can get careless with your face-washing. Stick with your thorough cleansing - or even double cleansing - routine, since the humidity paired with your sweat can cause your pores to get clogged up. At the same time, be careful not to overdo it either, since excessive washing with strong products could strip your face of necessary oils.

Don't put off face-washing until your pimples come out. It can take a lot of time to get rid of acne under the skin. Instead, ask your therapist to recommend facial products and cleansing routines that are more suitable for any lifestyle changes during this period, so that you can keep your skin clear.~ Winnie from The Bund

Recommendation: Try to wash your face gently once or twice a day. If you need to freshen up in the middle of the day, stick to cold water!

5. Popping Your Own Pimples

Do you find yourself plagued with what people call "lockdown breakouts"? Without our usual facial therapists, many of us are breaking out left, right, and centre. It takes all our self-control not to take the problems into our own hands...literally. 

If you find yourself breaking out more than usual, it's probably caused by all the stressful changes going on right now.  While masks and anti-acne treatments can be beneficial, I suggest first taking a step back to make sure that you're well-rested, hydrated and engaging in enough physical activity. What you eat will also affect your skin, so try to consume whole foods and opt for healthy choices like Chia Seeds, avocados and even Wheatgrass!Wheatgrass is so full of nutrients, you can even incorporate it into a DIY Mask, as we've been doing for our Wheatgrass Facial.~ Apple from Apple Queen Beauty

If you want to reduce the possibility of a breakout, consider some gentle but effective skin exfoliations, and masking up.

I've prepared a special homecare set for customers to exfoliate and do their own mask at home. To avoid future pimples, you can consider doing a DIY Facial with these natural ingredients to protect your skin even during the Circuit Breaker.~ Shizuka from Organics Beauty
DIY Facial Herbal Mask by Organics Beauty

DIY Facial by Organics Beauty

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