The Skincare Mistakes You Need to Stop Making In 2021

I don’t know about you but my biggest priority in life—after keeping my pothos desk plant alive and watching Cole Sprouse’s Instagram stories in real time—is staying young forever. A simple enough aspiration. Honestly, I don’t care if my bones are brittle and my veins struggle to pump blood to my fingertips (OK, that’s a lie, I do care very much), as long as I look like a 21-year-old who has never been exposed to air-conditioning, cigarette smoke, alcohol, or sugar, I will be happy. I don’t ask for much.

This quest of mine has taken me to skincare stores all around the world, both in-store and online—Japan, NYC, Paris—and I will never ever reveal to my boyfriend just how much of my hard-earned cash I spend on these delicious confections (though I’m sure he has some ideas based off the number of times I’ve pointed out which moisturizers he is allowed to use, and which he is never to touch under punishment of death).

But actually, it doesn’t matter whether you dip your whole head in a vat of Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair before bed; if you’re ignoring the fundamental rules of skincare, no amount of expensive cream will stave off those evil signs of aging. Turning to the experts—the widely-known (and sought after) facialist Jocelyn Petroni, and dermal clinician James Vivian for advice—these are the skincare mistakes to avoid.

Keep scrolling for the secrets to eternal youth.


You’re confusing skincare with skin health

“There’s a huge misconception about anti-aging skin care, where women think that anti-aging is something separate to skin health. The best anti-aging treatment you can do for your skin is to keep it healthy; it’s that simple! Maintaining good, healthy oil and water content in the skin keeps it resilient to intrinsic and extrinsic aging.” - Jocelyn Petroni

You’re not washing your face enough

“Not performing a double cleanse at night is a big one: for best cleansing results, perform an initial cleanse to remove your makeup, and then a secondary cleanse to actually cleanse your skin and prepare it for your subsequent at-home products.” - James Vivian

You’ve forgotten the word ‘moderation’

“Stop turning to laser and skin resurfacing treatments for a quick pick-me-up. Sure, they stimulate collagen and make your skin look fabulous, but it’s only for a limited amount of time. The inflammation caused by such practices is proven to be aging for your skin long term.” - Jocelyn Petroni

You’re applying products in the wrong order

“Applying eye cream over moisturizer? Don’t let your potent (and potentially expensive) eye cream have to fight its way through your moisturizer.” - James Vivian

You’re lazy about sunscreen

“Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen every single day; rain, hail, or shine! There is no better anti-aging topical prevention than sunscreen, and cloudy days are just as aging for your skin as sunny days. I love Ultraceuticals.” - Jocelyn Petroni

“Not reapplying SPF too. It’s one thing to apply SPF in the morning (and congratulations to those of your who do), but please keep in mind that SPF lasts merely hours and therefore requires applications throughout the day, especially during times when sun exposure is at its highest.” - James Vivian

You’re heeding the wrong advice

“Self-prescription of publicized ‘anti-aging’ ingredients, such as Vitamin A, AHAs, and BHAs, can conversely damage the skin and become 'pro-aging’ when inappropriately selected sans consultation and professional prescription. Seek out the advice of a trusted professional for correct dosages and frequency of application.” - James Vivian

“Listen to your skin expert, not what the skin care packaging reads. We know skin better than the marketing specialists who know what sells.” - Jocelyn Petroni

You’re stopping at the jawline

“Don’t forget the neck and chest: extend the love and care you apply to your face to your neck and chest as these areas have often been forgotten and may have accrued more damage than your face. I mean… who wants a gorgeous face and a mediocre neck and décolleté?” - James Vivian

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