by Alexandra Nicole Nuralam

12 Beauty Habits You Need to Quit & Adopt for the New Year

I’m sure we all can agree that 2020 has been a mess of a year. With the new year almost upon us, there’s absolutely no need to carry over any negative vibes or bad beauty habits with you. Good beauty habits are hard to take up, but 2021 could be the year you successfully start adopting these worthwhile practices. Here are 12 beauty habits we’re adopting — and leaving behind this year.

Don’t: Skip sunscreen.

You should be wearing sunscreen every single day. Bright and sunny out? Sunscreen. Cloudy day? Sunscreen. Rainy? Sunscreen. If you haven’t adopted this habit yet, start now! It’s important to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays — plus, sunscreen helps prevent premature skin ageing.

Don’t: Sleep with your makeup on.

Why are we still doing this? If you’re the type of person who continually falls asleep on your bed in your work clothes, we suggest picking up the sink-less skincare routine. It’s not as effective as doing a proper cleanse, but it’s definitely better than sleeping with your foundation on.

Don’t: Use dirty makeup brushes.

Image via @othersummers

Wonder where those mysterious breakouts come from? Think about all the eyeshadow, blush and powder that accumulates on your makeup brushes over a period of a week. Now think about how you can go weeks without washing them and then apply them to your face. Do your skin a favour — take five minutes out of your day to wash your brushes, at least once a week. Wash them with a baby shampoo mixed with warm water and then let it air-dry. Trust me, it will make a difference.

Don’t: Pick at your split ends.

When you pick at your split ends, you’re basically cutting your own hair, but not in a clean way. It leaves your hair ends broken and fragile, making it impossible for your hair to grow out healthily. If you’re thinking of growing out your locks, it’s best to break this bad habit stat.

Don’t: Pop your pimples.

Image via

I know it might be tempting to pop that pimple on your forehead, but here is the hard and simple truth behind it: when you pop your zit, it doesn’t make it go away nor will it heal faster. Popping it actually leaves it even more irritated, and it can possibly leave a scar on your face. Dab some spot treatment or slap an acne patch on it and call it a day.

Don’t: Keep old makeup.

The end of the year is the best time to declutter your makeup bag. Just like food, beauty products also have shelf lives, even though you wouldn’t expect them to expire. Lipstick, eyeshadows and powders can typically last up to two years; liquid foundation can last up to 12 months, and you should be using a new mascara every three months. Changes in colour or texture, weird smells and crusting or hardening are all signs that you should throw out your makeup.

Do: Drink more water.

I know, I know you’ve probably heard this a million times. But keeping your skin moisturized with a hyaluronic acid serum isn’t the only way to clear, bouncy skin — so drink more water! If you’re not drinking a sufficient amount of water, the lack of hydration will present itself by turning your skin dry, tight and flaky, and no one wants to start the new year with dry, dehydrated skin.

Do: Get sufficient sleep.

Image via @dawn.tan

Beauty sleep is real. Your body boosts circulation to the skin while you’re in dreamland, so you wake up to a healthy glow. Skimp on sleep and your complexion can look dull, ashen, or lifeless, not to mention the dark eye circles. The skin is very telling so make sure you’re getting all the sleep you need!

Do: Invest in a good eye cream.

The skin around your eyes is the most delicate part on your face, which means it needs special care. Even if you don’t see wrinkles now, eye creams are the best way to prevent wrinkles and crow’s feet from developing.

Do: Pay attention to your body.

Your face gets all the attention in your skincare routine, but don’t forget to treat the rest of it — including your neck when doing skincare and make your body care routine as appealing as your facial routine.

Gently using a body scrub can dramatically change the texture of your skin. You can also try your hand at dry-brushing, a great alternative exfoliating treatment that encourages blood flow. Remember to seal in all your effort with a good body lotion or oil, to keep your skin soft and smooth.

Do: Add retinol to your routine.

If you’re in your late 20s to early 30s, it’s a good idea to introduce retinol to your skincare routine. There are many benefits to retinol: it stimulates collagen, removes environmental damage, aids in wrinkle reduction, helps with breakouts, minimises the appearance of acne scars and pores, improves skin texture… it does all of it! Retinol can be irritating to beginners, so look for low-percentage, gentle formulas and then slowly work your way up from there.

Do: Make time for yourself

Image via @maddiebroderick

A habit anyone should pick up: make time for yourself. Take the necessary steps to make sure that your wellness is being cared for. Do you need to exercise to vent your frustrations? Meditate to ease your anxiety? Soak in a bath to reflect on your thoughts? Create a self-care routine that works for you and prioritise yourself.