Hi, my name is Becca and I’m a compulsive face toucher. I admit it! I’ve struggled to stop touching my face, which is never great for acne-prone skin since the oil and bacteria on your hands can contribute to breakouts.
But in the wake of coronavirus, it’s become more important than ever and I feel like I’m hearing this question asked all the time now:
“How can I stop touching my face so much?”
It’s a hard habit to break. And while I’m far from perfect, over the past year or so I’ve gotten significantly better about not touching my face. So I wanted to share some tips on what’s helped me the most so far!
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Tip 1: Acknowledge you have a face-touching problem
There’s no way to fix it until you…
1) realize you’re doing it and 2) realize there are consequences involved when you touch your face.
The effects of touching your face range from small annoyances like smudged makeup to the more serious consequences that I’m sure we’re all tired of hearing about lately. By touching your face more often, you may be exposing yourself to bacteria and viruses that your hands have touched. This can sometimes cause breakouts, and, of course, potentially increase your chances of picking up a cold or flu.
Tip 2: Keep your hands busy!
Do you touch your face as a nervous habit? Grab a fidget spinner (are those still a thing or do I just sound old?) or something else to fiddle with.
I love keeping these fun Speks magnets by my desk at home to relieve stress. And keeping my hands busy means keeping my hands off my face!
If you’re not working, there are plenty of other ways to busy your hands like taking up a new hobby like crocheting or cross-stitching.
Tip 3: Fix your posture (or stand up!)
I tend to lean my chin on my hand when I’m slouching at my desk, so I put an end to that by either trying to sit up straighter or just standing up completely when I notice myself doing this.
Bonus: Alternating between sitting and standing can relieve back pain, improve your mood, and boost your energy levels!
I have a standing desk at home that makes this even easier. But just remembering to stand up and walk across the room for a minute whenever you have an urge to lean on your hand can be extremely helpful.
Tip 4: Throw a patch on it
Do you have a habit of picking at your pimples? Me too. The biggest thing that helps me is to cover my blemishes with a pimple patch (also known as a hydrocolloid bandage) to prevent myself from picking at them. And luckily there are so many different kinds to try!
If you want something more fun, there are Starface pimple patches!
Tip 5: Enlist an accountability coach
What are friends for? I often barely even notice I’m touching my face, so one of the best ways to stop was to ask for support! I asked my fiance and a friend to call me out whenever they noticed me doing it. Not only was the reminder helpful, but the shame of being called out by my loved ones was a *huge* incentive not to touch my face! (mostly kidding about this last part but also kind of…not)
Tip 6: The tissue trick!
If you’re really having a hard time breaking the habit, there’s no need to beat yourself up. Keep a box of tissues at your desk and use a tissue to scratch your face or to lean your head on your hand or in any other reason you’d find yourself touching your face.
I’d like to thank my friend, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson for this tip.
And if all else fails…
Keep your hands clean. It’s hard to break the habit of touching your face, but by washing your hands regularly and properly (remember to wash them for the duration of the song “happy birthday”!) you’ll be doing your skin and your health a huge favor.
Recovering face touchers – what are your best tips for putting this habit to a stop?
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