|Photo: Susie Cushner|
Myth 13: Sleeping on your back or with a satin pillow will help your face stay wrinkle-free.
That's a big exaggeration with a little truth behind it. As you age, the collagen and elastin fibers in your skin break down, so when you burrow your face into a pillow, putting pressure on these fibers for several hours at a time, the skin is increasingly less likely to snap back.
"If you have a pattern of sleeping on one side, that side of your face will typically show more wrinkling than the other," says Tanzi, who adds that the difference is very subtle. Learning to sleep on your back can help your skin a bit, but you'd fare much better wearing a good sunscreen every day than sleeping on a satin pillow, says Woolery-Lloyd.
Myth 14: Rinsing your hair with beer will make it thicker.
A final rinse of beer at the end of your shower will leave you with more voluminous strands. "The beer builds up the circumference of the shafts," says Philip Berkovitz, founder of Philip B. hair products.
One caveat: You may smell like a frat house until the scent dissipates. Instead, try a thickening shampoo with hops, such as Aussie Aussome Volume 2 in 1 Shampoo ($4.50, drugstore.com).
Myth 15: Applying mayonnaise to your hair will make it glossier.
Mayo is made with an oil base, and it makes hair shine. But to avoid a mess, try this method:
- Apply a cup of mayonnaise mixed with a teaspoon of vanilla extract (to cut the mayonnaise scent) to dry, unwashed hair.
- Cover your head with a warm towel to help the mayonnaise penetrate, and leave it on for 20 minutes.
- Before you step into the shower, apply a heaping handful of shampoo to your hair. Don't add any water yet; just massage it in thoroughly for several minutes. That will help break down the excess oil, says Berkovitz.
- Rinse with cool water in the shower and your hair will come out shiny and silky.
If the idea of putting a condiment in your hair makes you queasy, try a rich glossing treatment, such as Phytonectar Ultra-Nourishing Oil Treatment ($30, drugstore.com), which contains egg and rich oils, the basic ingredients in mayonnaise.
Myth 16: Never pluck a gray hair, because 10 more will grow in its place.
This is false. "How can you get 10 new hair follicles from plucking one?" asks Berkovitz. If anything, ripping a hair out by its root leads to regrowth that refuses to lie flat. Your best bet for conquering gray? See a colorist.
Myth 17: Hair grows faster in summer than in winter.
Although studies have shown that men's beards grow faster in summer, there is no evidence to suggest that the hair on your head does.
Many women say they can tell it grows faster then, but if so, the difference is slight and barely detectable, according to McBurney. The only time women's hair has been proven to grow faster is during pregnancy, thanks to increased hormones.
Myth 18: Drinking water keeps your skin from drying out.
"This is one of the biggest myths out there," says Frank. What keeps skin moist is oil, not water.
Certainly, drinking water helps vital organs operate properly, and too little water in your body can give you a wan appearance. But your skin can still look dry even if you drink eight glasses a day.