Two happy pretty young sisters, hugs smiling laughing and having funny crazy time together, bearing stylish retro vintage feminine clothes and hats. Outdoors
Image: Shutterstock/Ann Haritonenko

You work hard to be pretty. You love shopping at Sephora, you make yourself smell good and take pride in how you look. Nobody would ever guess that some of the things that you do on the regular are actually pretty gross. But some of your habits might actually sabotage your beauty and it’s time to stop.

Here are six disgusting things you’re doing to sabotage your beauty…that you need to stop already.


Young woman with broken cigarette. Stop smoking concept. focus on cigarette and hands
Image: Shutterstock/PEPPERSMINT

We know, smoking is pretty out of style these days. A lot of people don’t consider themselves smokers, but don’t think twice about picking up a pack of cigarettes before hitting the bar. Alcohol and smoking just seem to go together, right? But even smoking a few cigarettes a couple nights a week can sabotage your beauty.

Picking at your skin

Shocked woman squeezing pimple in bathroom
Image: Shutterstock/gpointstudio

Popping pimples is almost irresistible, and who hasn’t picked at a particularly itchy scab before? But even though popping zits, squeezing blackheads and picking at scabs can be satisfying, it can leave some nasty scars that will totally wreck your skin. Either use products designed for these annoyances or just leave them alone—they’ll eventually go away on their own either way.

Sleeping in your makeup

fashion interior photo of beautiful sensual woman with dark hair lying in bed at bedroom
Image: Shutterstock/Svyatoslava Vladzimirska

When you’re dead tired after a long day at work or a late night partying, who can blame you for not having the energy to wash off your makeup? But when you sleep in your makeup, it clogs up your pores like nothing else and creates the perfect setting for future breakouts. You can skip the full skincare routine if you’re in a rush, but at least wash off the makeup before you crash for the night.

Using all the testers at Sephora

Closeup of hands of woman makeup artist testing lip gloss different colors on her hand
Image: Shutterstock/Dean Drobot

If you think about it, using the product testers at beauty stores is actually a lot grosser than you realized. You’re essentially smearing the same product on your skin that may have been on the skin of hundreds of other people, which is taking a pretty trusting gamble that all of them have good hygiene.

Not getting rid of old makeup

Broken powder, foundation and brushes on the white background
Image: Shutterstock/Tatiana Mihaliova

Yeah, almost everybody knows that the experts say that makeup has an expiration date. But if you’re holding onto makeup well past the recommended toss-by date because you think those dates are just a suggestion designed to sell more makeup…think again. Old makeup can be a breeding ground for bacteria. When it comes to eye makeup in particular—especially mascara or eyeliner—some of that bacteria can cause some scary infections.

Using spit as a makeup remover or on contacts

beauty, skin care and people concept - smiling young woman applying lotion to cotton disc for washing her face at bathroom
Image: Shutterstock/Syda Productions

Getting out a Q-tip and official makeup remover to clean up a mistake with your eyeliner is the right way to do things, but it seems like too many steps compared to just dabbing a little spit on your fingertip. Or if your contact lenses are itchy and you need to moisten them again, spit (or tap water) can seem more convenient than sterile eye drops. However, spit and tap water can contain bacteria that you really don’t want to get into your eyes. It’s better to take a couple extra minutes and keep yourself safe and pretty.