Men and women both do gross things sometimes. The difference between men and women is that men are often more inclined to admit to their “gross doings.” Women tend to keep it covert, like they’re getting away with something. What many women don’t realize, though, is that some of their covert, gross habits could actually be harming their health. Think you’re clean and this doesn’t apply to you? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that over 50 percent of healthy people have the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus living in or on their noses, throats, hair, or skin. Researchers in London report that if everyone routinely washed their hands, a million deaths a year could be prevented. Check out the list of gross things that all women do…and what happens when they do them.
Use Samples in the Shop
Is this you? You’re in the department store and it’s a makeup sample smorgasbord. You go crazy trying the newest mascara, lipstick, and powder—without taking the time to clean everything (like you know you should). Why it’s bad: When you use a personal product that has been shared with other people, you’re exposing yourself to all the bacteria or viruses that they have or were carrying. Rowan University researchers tracked makeup testers over a two-year period and found staph, strep, and E. coli bacteria, as well as the viruses responsible for cold sores and pinkeye on the makeup testers. What you should do: If you want to try on makeup at a counter, stick with disposable applicators. Also, try to sanitize all products that are able to be cleaned, like lipsticks and eye shadows. It’s also helpful to shave down any eye or lip pencils.
Never Clean Makeup Brushes
Is this you? Do you continue to use the same makeup brushes over and over without cleaning them? Do your makeup brushes feel stiff and hard? Are they often wet or stored in moist conditions, like in your bathroom? Why it’s bad: Bacteria, dust, and dirt can collect on brushes, allowing for the perfect environment for colonies of bacteria to live and reproduce. Every time you dip your uncleaned brush in your makeup, you can be reinfecting it and your face—over and over. This can cause irritation, breakouts, skin infections, and clogged pores. What you should do: We know it’s a pain, but it’s worth the trouble! Professionals recommend that you clean your makeup brushes at least once a month.
Never Clean Their Hairbrushes
Is this you? Does your hairbrush have a life of its own? Is there so much hair on your brush that you can hardly see the stem of the brush? Do you remember the last time you cleaned your brush? Have you ever cleaned your brush? Why it’s bad: Product residue, dead skin cells from your scalp, and oil can sit on your brush and act as a host for bacteria and yeast to colonize. This can leave your brush not only sticky and smelly, but also bad for your health. What you should do instead: Professionals say that your course of action really depends on how much you wash your hair. The less that you wash and the more you use styling products and stuff in your hair, the more often you should clean it. They recommend that you thoroughly clean your brush at least once a month and keep up with a spray cleaning once a week.
Put Makeup Back in the Container When You Take out Too Much
Is this you? You poured out too much concealer, so what do you do? You pour the excess back in and scrape your hand to make sure you get everything. How bad could it be? Why it’s bad: Your hands are a petri dish of dirty stuff. Product that gets on your hands is contaminated with the bacteria and dirt and gets put back in the container to reproduce. British doctor Chris van Tulleken and Queen Mary University of London microbiologist Ron Cutler did a study that involved swabbing the hands of 50 people on the streets of London to determine how much bacteria is on the the average person’s hands. The results were quite disgusting. Everyone had bacteria on their hands, and 26 to 30 percent of the people had fecal matter. One quarter of the people were “heavily contaminated” (three times more than the average), and 10 percent were “grossly contaminated,” carrying 10 to 50 times more than the average person. What you should do: Never, ever put product back in a container. Use it or lose it.
Try on Bathing Suits or Lingerie Without Underwear
Is this you? It happens more often than you think. Layers of underwear are bulky and don’t give you the exact appearance of the bathing suit or underwear that you’re trying on—so you take it off and figure “I’ll just wear it for 3 minutes. It can’t be that bad.” Why it’s bad: A study done by the microbiology and pathology department of the New York University School of Medicine found that underwear and bathing suits in department stores possessed an alarming amount of microflora (bacteria from your large intestine) and also skin, fecal bacteria, yeast, and even salmonella. Think those sticky strips will save your precious parts? Think again! The researchers found that they don’t help much at all. What you should do: Always, ALWAYS try on bathing suits or underwear over your underwear. Be sure to wash your new clothing as soon as you get home. Also, try to wash your hands after trying on the clothes.
Share Your Bed With Your Pets
We all have a soft spot for our furry companions, making it hard to say no when they just want to be close to you. Is it really that bad? Watch the video below to find out the gross reasons why you should rethink letting Scruffy share your bed.
Not Wash Your Hair and Live on Dry Shampoo
Is This You? For the fifth day in a row you’ve gotten up late and have no time to shower! You spray your entire head with dry shampoo (again), brush, and hope for the best. Why it’s bad: Washing your hair not only makes your hair look and smell good, it’s actually good for your health! Your scalp should be thought of as an extension of the skin on your face. When you clean your head and your scalp, you remove dead skin, germs, and bacteria. What you should do: The CDC reports that within the first 15 minutes of bathing, the average person sheds 6 x 106 colony forming units (CFU) of Staphylococcus aureus. Professionals recommend that you wash your hair every other day (with a twice-a-week washing being an absolute must).