8 Ingredients that could be problematic for your skin

Raw egg

Used as a skin tensor in home-made cosmetic treatments.

BUT: Applied directly to the skin, a raw egg may contain salmonella. These bacteria could cause a skin infection later. It’s rare but not impossible.


Well known for its brightening effect on the skin or to treat acne.

BUT: This fruit is acidic and may burn the skin. Like other citrus fruits, lemon contains psoralen. This natural active ingredient sensitizes the skin to UV-A light for around 24 hours after application. When applied directly to the skin, lemon can cause phytophotodermatitis (a type of contact dermatitis) and hyperpigmentation if exposed to the sun. So lemon, yes, but on your plate only!


Toothpaste seems to be a well-known ingredient to treat pimples.

BUT: It may do more harm than good. This product can irritate and even burn the skin. Toothpaste has a high alkaline pH, while healthy skin has an acidic pH. On application, the skin becomes instantly dehydrated. Also, the bicarbonate contained in toothpaste weakens the skin barrier function, stimulating the development of bacteria on the skin surface.


Often used in DIY beauty treatments for a glowing skin.

BUT: Spices should be handled with care. Cinnamon, for example, can have nasty side effects on the skin, such as redness and irritation.
Another spice, Curcuma, can stain the skin yellow.

If you want to use spices in home-made cosmetics, be careful as they may irritate your skin and cause rashes.

Hot water

Hot steaming is well known to open pores for a thorough cleansing.

BUT: Hot water should not be used on the skin. Contrary to what we may think, hot water does not eliminate bacteria and impurities. All it may do is damage the hydrolipidic film of the skin and accelerate cutaneous ageing.

Sodium Bicarbonate

Sodium bicarbonate is often used as an exfoliator.

BUT: It could be too abrasive and irritate the skin. Bicarbonate affects the skin pH level, and some people will react with skin rashes, redness and burning.


This ingredient is often used as a body exfoliant.

BUT: Sugar is made of large crystals that can create small tears in the skin if used too often. It can be too harsh on the skin and cause irritation. Use it from time to time on body skin, but do not use it on the face as facial skin is more delicate.