TikTok is rapidly taking over the social media industry. Every year, TikTok users in the U.S. increase in huge numbers. In 2021, the projected total number of users is 73.7 million, up from the 65.9 million user count in 2020.
For many, TikTok is more than just a social media platform. It’s also a go-to place for beauty and skin care tips. Many TikTok users share tips on how to improve their skin using natural ingredients. There are also posts about using unexpected items for skin care, such as sticking hydrocolloid bandages on the face to shrink pimples. Spoiler alert: it may work but is not recommended by experts.
Skin care advice on TikTok sometimes seems too good to be true. And most of the time, they are. Still, many users try skin care tips they find online because of their popularity. It’s a case of FOMO, or fear of missing out. But everything posted on the internet should always be taken with a grain of salt. Having millions of views and likes doesn’t automatically make skin care advice credible or true.
That said, you should always be skeptical of the skin care hacks and tips you see on TikTok due to the following reasons:
On TikTok, the concept of “what you see is what you get” doesn’t always exist. It’s difficult to trust skin care tips that roam the platform because of the optical illusion added to these videos through camera filters.
Face filters have become very common on social media. TikTok has its own filter called “Enhance,” which does what its name suggests. It enhances one’s features, such as smoothing the skin of a user, making their eyes appear bigger or smaller, making their face look thinner, and so on.
With camera filters, you can’t really tell if a skin care tip shared on the platform is effective or not. For example, an influencer might claim that a certain product made their skin smoother and helped them get rid of their pimples. But there’s always the possibility that they’re lying and simply using face filters to improve their skin looks and make them seem credible.
Another thing that TikTok users need to remember is that some people who share skin care advice do so not to help others but to gain attention and some “clout.” As the saying goes, bad publicity is still publicity. And as long as these people gain traction and increase their social media numbers, that’s enough for them, even if they’re sharing false information.
For example, an online user might claim that they could use toothpaste to remove body hair even though it’s not true. They share this falsity just for the shock factor and get people talking about them and their posts.
Of course, people who need to get body hair removed can always go to their nearby waxing studio or buy a depilatory cream. But finding a DIY solution online can be very tempting. So they might bite into it, only to find out in the end that the advice is fake.
Some TikTok users share DIY skin care solutions, such as face masks, face scrubs, and moisturizers. Others share their at-home beauty procedures, such as DIY teeth whitening.
But these DIY solutions and procedures shouldn’t always be trusted. That is even more so if they come from people without any professional experience or academic background related to beauty and skin care. This also makes several pieces of beauty and skin care advice quite dangerous.
One perfect example is a woman who tried to do an at-home acupuncture procedure she saw on TikTok. The result? She was rushed to the hospital due to scars. She also went temporarily blind in one eye. Other dangerous skin care tips that went viral on the platform are DIY dermaplaning, DIY micro-needling, coffee facial scrubs, slugging, and many more.
It’s easy to understand why people are drawn to everything DIY. Often, you can save money by DIY-ing certain things. But when it comes to beauty and skin care, you should seek expert advice instead of relying on strangers on the internet.
Not “All” Tips and Hacks Are Dangerous
It can be argued that a lot of the tips shared on social media, especially TikTok, are indeed helpful and accurate. Beauty experts have written articles online to back up some of the tips shared on TikTok.
Still, there’s nothing bad about being skeptical and wary of what you watch. If you see a skin care hack go viral on TikTok, double-check on it first or ask an expert before you try it for yourself.