TikTokis the birthplace of viral viral sea shanties, dalgona coffee and questionable beauty hacks. The social media platform is awash with creators who share beauty tips and tricks daily, in a bid to elevate their followers' beauty habits on a large scale. In many cases though, these often eyebrow-raising beauty hacks can do more harm than good. In the past year, skincare experts and doctors have warned against ‘slugging’ (smearing your face with an occlusive jelly like Vaseline) and a worrying SPF related hack that involves applying it to specific sections of your face only.
This month there is a fresh wave of warnings coming for the latest trends. Dr. Ahmed El Muntasar, NHS frontline doctor and celebrity aesthetician, set about highlighting some big TikTok beauty ‘secrets’ to avoid. He emphasises that many in the TikTok beauty community are not exactly experts in their field and any social media born tips you're tempted to try are always worth running by those who are.
‘Tiktok is a platform where anyone can appear like an expert – you post a video about your skincare routine, show your amazing results, and voila! – suddenly, people are inspired and want to try it out themselves,’ he tells Grazia. ‘Some of the trends I’ve seen are crazy. A lot of TikTokers are probably unaware that what they are suggesting in their videos is actually quite dangerous.’
He also warns of the inherent perils of the internet and how easy it is to distort things. Reality and social media are often at odds.
‘Another thing to remember with TikTok is the videos are being filmed on people’s phones, sometimes with filters on, in front of great lighting,’ he notes. ‘This makes it very difficult to know the true results of some of these homemade skincare treatments.’
In a YouTube video, Dr. Ahmed unpacks the following four viral beauty trends and reveals why we should all be steering clear of them:
Watch: Dr. Ahmed El Muntasar Tells Us Which Viral TikTok Beauty Trends To Avoid
1. Drinking turmeric, ginger, and cucumber in your water for your skin
Water is an essential (eight cups or more a day is recommended). But additives like turmeric, ginger and cucumber within water are unnecessary. Dr. Ahmed says they simply add flavour, and don’t actually achieve too much.
2. Icing your face every morning to get rid of acne
Ice can be anti-inflammatory and in some cases alleviate redness. However, it is highly debatable whether ice cubes can stave off acne outright. The jury is out.
3. Using aspirin to relieve acne
This is a highly dangerous hack so steer clear. Some TikTokers use multiple tablets of aspirin, crush them up, use water to turn them into a paste, then apply the paste to their face as an exfoliant. Applying aspirin topically to your skin can be very damaging, causing dryness and irritation. In Dr. Ahmed’s words: ‘I’m scared, guys’.
4. Using turmeric, bananas, lemon and honey to fade dark spots
Dr. Ahmed says that these ingredients will have little to no effect on dark spots. Instead, Dr. Ahmed recommends a classic SPF every morning, along with vitamin C, which helps to brighten skin. A nightly retinol helps to increase cell turnover and fade dark spots too, if that's what you want to achieve.
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OJAR Wadi Bloom Absolute Perfume Oil, £130
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Romilly Wilde Light + Energy Serum Cleanser, £58
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Jones Road Lip and Cheek Stick, £30.50
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Pacifica Sea & C Love Vitamin Serum, £22
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Scientia Ceramide Skin Rescue Moisture Barrier Balm, £28
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ICONIC London Glaze Crayon, £24
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Monday Muse Soft Milky Gel Cleanser, £28
Monday Muse has a cult following online, for all the right reasons. The product range is minimal, considered and created with reactive skin in mind. Their latest launch, the Soft Milky Gel Cleanser, is one worth praise. It's non-foaming, creamy and emulsifies well to melt make-up and cleanse the skin thoroughly. Some cleansers have a tendency to leave skin on the tight side, but this one leaves happy and soft skin in its wake.
Gloved by Tom Daxon Sanitiser Travel Set, £36
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L'Oréal Professionnel Steampod 3.0 x Barbie Hair Straightener, £235
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OUAI North Bondi Candle, £32
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Natasha Denona Glam Face Palette Dark, £51
Natasha Denona's palettes are on the pricier side, but the quality of the shadows are second to none. These shades are intensely pigmented, so go easy with your brush. The matte shades are buttery smooth, and don't feel chalky upon application (a risk that often comes with the matte territory). These palettes - which come in a light and dark version - feature a cream blush and highlight, too. One for the Christmas list?
Revitalash Lash and Brow Masque, £40
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Boots Glow Banana Peel and Polish, £5
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