1. Hair spray
You may have heard somewhere that it will help set your makeup, but it should never be applied to your face because it contains lacquers and alcohol that will dry our your skin, causing your skin to become dehydrated and can make you look older. Plus, hair spray has repellents in it that could irritate your skin, leaving it red and bumpy.
Just because it keeps your underarms from sweating through your shirt doesn’t mean that if you swipe it on your face, it will keep your makeup from melting down your face when you perspire. You want your skin to be able to breathe.
3. Hair color
If you color your hair regularly and want your brows to match, use a vegetable-based colorant or tinted brow mascara on your arches instead of your at-home hair color, since the formulas are less harsh. Box dye can be too irritating for the skin around your eye area and can even make your eyes burn and tear up.
4. Vegetable shortening
Even though some people apply this to their body to help treat psoriasis, it’s far too heavy for your face and may even clog your pores, leading to breakouts.
5. Body lotion
It would be nice to just slather on one lotion and be done with it, but body lotions are usually a lot thicker and typically contain fragrances that might irritate your facial skin. On your face, always use something more gentle and delicate.
The same surfactants that clean your hair, stripping it of excess oil and dirt, are manufactured to clean and do things to your hair shaft, and are not designed to deal with the delicate molecules of your skin. If you washed your face with shampoo, it would end up being really dry and flaky.
7. Hair serum
Just because a formula has the word “serum” on the label doesn’t mean it’s the same kind of serum that your skin can handle. Plus, a lot of them contain fragrances that can heavily irritate your facial skin.
8. Foot creams
This is basically a no-brainer, but if you’re desperate and only have a foot cream laying around, DO NOT put it anywhere near your face — even if you just have a tiny dry patch. They’re formulated to break down thick calluses on your feet and often contain chemical exfoliants at percentages that you would never want to use on your face.
9. Nail polish
Trying to paint your face for a Halloween or costume party? This only belongs on your nails. It has acrylic molecules that will actually dry the skin out.
10. Acetic acids a.k.a. vinegar
Yes, you can apply vinegar onto your face as a toner, but it’s better to get a toner that contains the ingredient instead of whipping a bottle out of your kitchen cabinet. Vinegar can lose water over time and become stronger, so if you use it on your skin, it can actually burn it if you don’t know exactly how long it’s been in your possession.
This ingredient is in a lot of DIY hair masks because it’s hydrating to your hair. But it’s not a good idea to put it on your skin because it’s too acidic and too occlusive, meaning it doesn’t allow your skin to breathe and can clog your pores.
(All tips are via Dr. David Colbert, M.D., a cosmetic dermatologist in NYC and founder of Colbert M.D. products)