15 Sneaky Beauty Mistakes You Won't See Southern Women Making

No sleeping with makeup on, unless you're Dolly Parton.

Woman applying skin cream, 1945-1955.
Photo: SSPL/Getty Images

As long as there has been retinol and red lipstick, there have been so-called beauty "please-dos" and plenty of beauty "no-nos." While much comes down to preference—and we're not ones to tell anyone to change who they are or how often they like to use the curling wand—other times it involves practices that can enhance or stifle skin health or natural beauty, which are two areas we don't like to mess around with.

Southern women have always paid close attention to these supposed dos and don'ts (or truths and myths), usually from watching the women before them, like their mothers and grandmothers. It never hurts to stay informed, hm? Especially when 90 degrees and 100 percent humidity is just a typical spring day in the South. Frizz, sun-damage freckles, and melting makeup are no match for a woman informed.

Southern women aren't fussy with beauty routines and like to keep it classic—but they're not simple, either. For starters, here are 15 sneaky beauty mistakes we'll never make.

  1. Skipping SPF. Or thinking you only need to wear SPF in the summertime. This is a practice that should be performed daily without question, not just when you're going out into the sun. Also, shady hats at the beach are a must.
  2. Sleeping with your makeup on, unless you're Dolly. If you know, you know. At the very least, use a makeup wipe in dire times.
  3. Over-plucking the brows. Those days are delightfully over, and brows across the nation have been recovering ever since.
  4. Coloring your hair at home. At the very least, it can turn out differently than the picture on the box. In worst case, you can seriously damage your strands. Leave it to the professionals! Or embrace going gray naturally with these tips.
  5. Skipping retinol. It's the holy-grail ingredient that can help us age gracefully with softer, more delayed fine lines. Start it young, and stick to it. Hint: There are less harsh alternatives like bakuchiol if your skin is too sensitive.
  6. Not believing in the power of a signature lip color. This is basically the best secret weapon of all time. A signature lipstick shade can make you feel instantly more confident, and it'll stick by you in good times and bad. Have it in your purse, and you'll never be caught ill-prepared. (Here are 10 shades that make a good start.)
  7. Neglecting the neck. Your décolletage is actually one of the biggest tells of age, and boy do our necks see its fair share of sunlight. It's best to give it TLC in the form of daily moisturizing and a nighttime anti-aging serum.
  8. Skipping regular trims at the hair salon to "make your hair grow faster." If your answer to a too-short cut is staying away from the salon altogether, think again. Snipping off split ends actually keeps your hair healthy and promotes growth. If not, split ends will travel up the hair shaft and result in thinner-looking hair. Every eight weeks is recommended, especially if you color your hair or use heat tools regularly.
  9. Curling your lashes after applying mascara. The thought actually makes us hurt. The clumps. The crimps. The flakes! The ripped-out lashes! Please, no.
  10. Forgetting the blotting sheets. Try making it through a summer in the South without a pack of oil-absorbing blotting sheets. We dare you. Sweaty—er, glistening—ladies, unite.
  11. Not knowing what it means to "put your face on." This one's more nostalgic than anything. Nowadays, we'd stretch this commandment to mean doing a complete skin-care routine (including SPF) before leaving the house, because we all know that's even more important than putting on a full face of makeup.
  12. Forgetting to exfoliate regularly. The heat and humidity down here can clog pores up something quick and fierce. Using exfoliating acids can help brighten and clarify the face, while body scrubs to give legs and arms a skin-smoothing boost.
  13. Too much bronzer. While a sun-kissed glow is often associated with looking youthful, too much bronzer can settle into fine lines, make your face look one-dimensional, and drag down the eye. Instead, focus it on the top of your cheekbones.
  14. Chipped nails. Enough said, particularly if you have any occasions, lunches, or trips on the schedule. Go sans-color if you're not one to frequent the nail salon often. (Dior Nail Glow is perfect for a your-nails-but-better tint that won't ever look chipped.)
  15. Giving up on something when you don't see immediate results. Southern women are well-tested in patience. After all, all the best things in life (making buttermilk biscuits, watching every Hallmark Christmas movie in December, and getting our hands on the always-sold-out Charlotte Tilbury Glow Wand) take time. Stick with it.

While these certainly aren't all non-negotiables, they can help you reach all of your skin, hair, and beauty goals. Heed, and you'll succeed.

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