7 Skincare Mistakes and Misconceptions

That expensive, cost-more-than-botox “celebrity favorite” moisturizer isn’t shrinking your pores.

It’s shrinking your wallet.

I have seen tens of thousands of patients over the last 25+ years as a Registered Nurse, Plastic and Cosmetic Surgical First Assistant, and Clinical Specialist for Head and Neck, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

What do many of my patients have in common?

Besides wanting their skin to glow, be as smooth as a baby’s skin, and stop the skin aging process, they have committed some major crimes in the skin care arena.

Here are 7 of the most common mistakes and misconceptions people make regarding their skin care. 

Mistake #1: Believe every advertisement.

The first and foremost mistake is believing everything we read, hear, and see. Commercialism is amazingly brainwashing. Remember, their goal is to sell, sell, sell. So when they tell you that the collagen inside the product will plump your skin, think again. (This is actually impossible.)

Mistake #2: Change skincare products often because your skin adapts.

Good skincare habits should be exactly that: a good habit. A habit means consistency, not a walk through the mall this week to purchase “this” and next week to purchase “that” because “this” wasn’t your miracle, and the new ad promises that “that” will definitely be your magic wand. Stop wasting your money. Use a really proven, effective product and stick with it. You’ll be amazed. Over time, you’ll achieve dramatic improvements.

Mistake #3: Apply a variety of different skincare products to maximize the result.

Applying too many different products is also a mistake. More is not better. Keep skincare simple but effective.

Mistake #4: Food doesn’t affect your skin.

Don’t think you can mistreat your body all you want and that the latest product on the market will fix your damaged skin. The skin is the largest organ of the body, and it protects all the other organs. So let’s protect it by being proactive. Make no mistake, diet plays a very important role in good skin care. Reduce intake of alcohol, sugar, caffeine, and salt. Everything in moderation.

Mistake #5: Smoking won’t age your skin if you use anti-aging products.

Smoking is fine as long as you wash your face well and use an anti-aging cream. WRONG! The effect smoking has on the skin is as damaging as it is to your other organs.

Mistake #6: Only use sunscreen when you go to the beach.

Though we all know how bad the sun is for our skin, we think applying sunscreen before venturing to the beach is all we need to do. Most people give little thought as to how and where to apply this annoying cream that we really don’t want on anyway. First, make sure all exposed areas of the body are covered, including ears, lips, hairline, feet, etc. Second, and very importantly, REAPPLY, REAPPLY, REAPPLY!

Mistake #7: Expensive skin care products work the best. More money = better results.

“You get what you pay for.” WRONG. Believing that the more expensive your product is, the better it must be is a big misnomer. The truth is most often, your dollars are paying for expensive packaging as well as very expensive advertising. Buyer Beware!

Think you’re making a mistake but not sure? Received conflicting advice? Leave a comment or write to me personally to find out at candy@academybycandy.com

Is Pollution Damaging Your Skin?

Researchers in Germany, Switzerland, and the USA recently published results on the impact of air pollution on aging in a group of 400 women. The aging of the women’s skin was assessed by a well-established skin aging score called SCINEXA (score of intrinsic and extrinsic skin aging), which showed clearly that exposure to environmental pollution is linked to skin aging and hyperpigmentation (age spots).

First, the small carbon particles in air pollution enter the body and stimulate our cells’ production of the pigment melanin. Several ingredients in skin care products have proven to block tyrosinase (the precursor to melanin). The most effective being Licorice Extract when it is combined with low pH glycolic acid. This combination provides a deep penetration which prevents tyrosinase from stimulating the melanin.

Second, and even more important, these polluted particles penetrate into the deep layers of the epidermis and even into the dermal layer of the skin causing inflammation. This increases the rate of collagen destruction, creating aging skin, loss of elasticity, and wrinkles. Remember, by the time we are 30, we will have lost approximately 30% of our collagen cells. So, whether we have skin damage due to the sun, pollution or simply real time aging our goal is to reverse this loss of collagen and slow up it’s destruction. To date the most effective way to stimulate new collagen cells and slow the aging process of the skin is to consistently use a low pH glycolic acid cream at least twice daily.

Third, since pollution actually leaves residue on the surface of the skin and even deeper into clogged pores, cleansing properly is critical. A good fragrance-free cleanser should remove all makeup and debris thoroughly, followed by a gentle buffing of the skin with a cool wet buff puff or sponge to assist in exfoliation.

Fourth, protect the skin from further damage by using a good sunscreen moisturizer daily as well as remembering to reapply when exposed to the sun.

These simple steps, if followed 2 to 3 times a day, will guarantee beautiful, glowing, and youthful looking skin.

Why You Don’t Need Eye Cream

The first place we start to show age is around our eyes. Because we become desperate, eye creams have become one of the most popular gimmicky cosmetic products advertised today.

The eyeball is actually surrounded by fat and a thin muscle holds the fat back into place. When the muscle weakens through age or genetics, the fat becomes “bags” under your eyes. These “fat bags” cannot be reduced by topical chemicals, skin care creams, or under eye rollers & massage. The best way to correct this problem is with a surgical procedure called a blepharoplasty, either through a skin incision made under the eyelashes or through an invisible incision made on the inside of the lower lid.

So, let’s talk about what we should do to slow down the aging process of our eyes. First, let’s not forget that our eyelid skin is thin and delicate. Both our epidermal (outer layer) and our dermal (inner alive layer) are equally delicate. Remember our goal in medical skin care is to decrease the dead outer layer and increase the alive inner layer. This reversal is what anti-aging skin care is all about.

With this understanding, it makes sense to apply your Academy by Candy HydroLight Plus-15 to your eyelids. But how? Simply, massage a small amount of crème over your entire face and neck and use the remaining bit both under and over your eyelids.

Voila. This will help tighten the area around your eyes.

What is Collagen? And is putting it on your face working?

What is Collagen? Why are there so many skin care products formulated with Collagen?

Let’s take a look at what Collagen really is and why it plays such an important role in keeping our skin looking youthful.

What is Collagen?

Collagen is a protein part of the connective tissue that helps the skin maintain firmness, suppleness, and elasticity.

As we age, the outer layer (or keratin layer) of the epidermis becomes thick, clumpy, irregular, flaky, and dull looking. Conversely, the live (or dermal layer) becomes thin, losing its Collagen and elasticity. When skin loses Collagen, it wrinkles. When skin loses elasticity, it sags.

Can you apply Collagen to your face for results?

With these proven facts, it seems logical to assume that actually applying Collagen to our skin would help reverse some of this aging process, right?

Guess what? It doesn’t! Yet, many cosmetic companies continue to imply that their Collagen-filled skin care products can achieve this anti-aging miracle.

Real Talk

So what’s the real truth? The truth is that by the time we are 30, we will have lost about 30% of our skin’s collagen and elastin, creating wrinkling and sagging. (And as we age, that percentage obviously goes up.)

What can we do to boost Collagen? (AKA look younger!)

Reversing this damage can be achieved by stimulating, or smacking, new Collagen and elastin cells into regenerating.

Products must contain ingredients which are molecularly small enough to penetrate deep into the skin where these collagen cells live. (Those skincare products on the market today contain large molecules of Collagen that are impossible to penetrate your skin.) In addition, these ingredients must be formulated strong enough to smack and reawaken these very important cells.

Glycolic Acid, if formulated correctly and used consistently, is the most effective way to prevent, slow down, and even reverse the aging process of the skin. The key phrase here though is “formulated correctly.”

Always ask questions and study the ingredients of your skincare products. You’re likely wasting your money on products that don’t work.

Strength Matters: Why You Need to Know More About Ingredients in Your Skincare Products

How much do you know about the strength and quantity of the ingredients in your skincare products?

Sure, you may read articles that tell you what ingredients to look for, but what about how much of that ingredient is in the product? Or what other ingredients are in that product that may counteract it?

A study reported from Italy titled “A Prospective Study of Anti-Aging topical therapies using a Quantitative Method of Assessment” concluded that the value of “unbuffered” ( low pH) Glycolic Acid has been verified and scientifically substantiated to be more beneficial compared to Vitamins A, C, E, Coenzyme Q10, Lipoic acid, Hyaluronic Acid, Kinerase, and Pyruvic Acid.


Because the antioxidant Glycolic Acid, in its proper strength, has the smallest molecular size, enabling it to penetrate the skin the deepest, rendering it the most effective!

Another study performed on burn patients proved that Glycolic Acid decreased the healing time by 50%. Once again, proving that the antioxidant Glycolic Acid not only protects against free-radical damage, but stimulates new cellular growth faster than any other skin care ingredient.

Be mindful however that the FDA study indicated that all ingredients are not equal. The strength of these products vary dramatically by not only percent but even more importantly by pH.

More is not always better. Here at Academy by Candy, we are always open and honest about the strength of our Glycolic Acid. We use 15% unbuffered Glycolic Acid with a pH of 1.5 in our products. This is why our customers get the best results. (In-office Glycolic Peels are 70% unbuffered Glycolic Acid with 0.5 pH.)