Your phone is your lifeline, your tether to your family, the way you stay in touch with your closest friends and an invaluable business tool. You use it to make personal and business calls, to shop, to watch videos, to take photos, to buy movie and plane tickets and to wake you up in the morning. Rarely, if ever, in human history has there been a single device that has occupied such a central role in the daily lives of people. Yes, the modern gadget is a pretty incredible device. But did you know that besides empowering your modern lifestyle it might also be ruining your skin? That’s right. That priceless piece of contemporary kit you keep in your pocket or purse may actually be doing a number on your skin. Below we’re going to take a close look at the three most common forms of cell phone skin irritation.
The Scourge of Cell Phone Skin Irritation
There is a growing body of evidence that demonstrates how mobile phones affect your skin. But what are you supposed to do? Stop calling your mom? Stop using your phone to conduct business? Stop using it to take pictures and videos of your kids? Obviously, all of those options are non-starters. The good news though is that there are ways to minimize cell phone irritation and we’ll get to them, but first let’s look at those three ways your electronic device is ruining your skin.
- Wrinkles – It’s hard enough dealing with wrinkles and various other travesties that befall your skin as you age without making the situation worse by way of cell phone irritation. In fact, most people are actively engaged in trying to prevent or minimize wrinkles as they get older, not create new ones. Unfortunately using your gadget is a better recipe for generating wrinkles than preventing them. One of the most common ways your cell phone impacts your skin is by promoting what has become known as “tech neck.”Tech neck is the result of looking down all the time to text and do other things on our electronic gadgets rather than looking up the way our ancestors (mom and dad) used to do. Too much staring down at our smartphone screens results in a breakdown of collagen in the skin of the neck which in turn makes the skin more susceptible to wrinkles. Tech neck is a form of “turkey neck” which has been around since time immemorial but typically doesn’t make itself known until a person is in their mid to late 50s, or even later. Tech neck has begun appearing on people in their 30s which is not a good thing no matter how you look at it.
- Acne – At any given time the typical smartphone is playing host to more bacteria than the handle on your toilet. Think about that for a moment. Would you feel okay pressing the handle of your toilet against your face for hours every day? Of course not. The mobile device picks up all its resident bacteria and germs because it’s constantly in contact with your hands, which are constantly in contact with door handles, subway turnstiles, countertops in the coffee shop, ATM buttons and yes, toilet seat handles; often in public restrooms. You transfer all the bacteria you pick up with your hands to your phone and then press it against your face. The result? Cell phone skin irritation where the pores of the skin on your face get clogged with this bacterial soup and you have an outbreak of acne. Cleaning both the mobile device and our faces regularly is vital to keeping the skin in the ‘phone zone’ on our faces in good working order.
- Circles Under the Eyes – The blue glow from your cell phone screen has an uncanny way of disrupting sleep cycles. If you sleep with your phone on and near your head, message tones every time one of your friends posts to Facebook can wake you up as well. Anything that makes it more difficult for you to get the proper amount of deep, restful sleep is going to have a negative effect on the skin of your face. In this case, one of the most common traits of the under-sleeper is dark circles under the eyes. While that look may work for raccoons, it’s really not a look most people want to cultivate. Just as an added bonus, those dark circles are often accompanied by bags under the eyes as well.
Some Simple Remedies…
Now that we’ve had a look at the cell phone impact on your skin, let’s look at some ways you can avoid that unfortunate fate:
- Tech neck – Tech neck can largely be avoided by simply holding your phone up in front of you while you’re texting or reading messages or posts from others. Is it apt to look a bit strange at times? Sure. But ten years from now when all those who laughed at you for holding your phone up are competing for “Turkey Neck of the Year” while your neck looks smooth and supple as ever you’ll have the sweetest of last laughs.
- Acne – Preventing cell phone irritation from causing acne means keeping both it and your face cleaner than you’re currently doing. Especially your phone. You can clean it regularly using disposable antiseptic wipes. Another great, common sense way to avoid this problem is to use an earpiece instead of holding your phone against the side of your head and face all day.
- Circles under the Eyes – There is an easy way to prevent your phone from keeping you awake all night and causing you to develop raccoon eyes: turn it off! Sure, you’ll miss all the spine-tingling action when one of those celebrities you follow on Twitter posts that they’ve just had earwax reduction surgery, but sacrifices are a necessary part of life sometimes.
Cell phone skin irritation is a real problem. Follow the above tips to reduce the impact of your phone on your skin and rest easier.