Dermatologist Dr. Muneeb Shah Reveals Top Skincare Trends To Avoid - Exclusive

Anybody who's looking for good skincare advice knows that there's a ton of information to sift through, and it's not always clear which advice is good and which advice is bad. Luckily, dermatologist Dr. Muneeb Shah, who goes by Doctorly on social media, is here to help.

Dr. Shah decided that as a skincare expert with a passion for education, he could provide people with straightforward, research-based skincare advice on social media. So he started posting videos on TikTok in 2020, and they blew up. His videos were so popular, in fact, they went from being something he did for fun on the side to a legitimate second job.

One of Shah's major goals is to cut through all the misinformation and help people avoid social media skincare trends that can actually do a lot more harm to your skin than you'd think. In an exclusive interview with Health Digest, Dr. Shah talked about some of the skincare trends you should definitely skip and which ones are safe to try.

Trends to skip

Dr. Shah emphasized that it's important to get research-based information before trying out a skincare trend you see on social media. Some trends are truly dangerous and can do significant damage to your skin. Shah called out two trends that are going around right now as particularly dangerous — using a needle and ink to give yourself freckles and using a hyaluronic pen to inject hyaluronic acid.

"Super dangerous. Putting anything underneath the skin that's not supposed to be there can cause really bad inflammatory reactions," Shah explained.

He went on to say that putting anything that's not sterile under your skin is really harmful as well, and most people aren't taking precautions when they try these trends.

Another trend that seems safe, but actually isn't, is putting lemon juice on your skin to lighten dark spots and hyperpigmentation.

"If you're exposed to the sun, while lemon is on your skin, it actually causes this phototoxic reaction that can actually cause really bad blistering," said Shah.

Shah also warned that washing your face with baking soda or crushed up aspirin will damage your skin. He explained that the pH levels of baking soda are too high for your skin. And while aspirin contains the same active ingredient used in many face washes, the concentrations of that ingredient are way higher in aspirin, making it unsafe for your skin.


Shah said that there are a few DIY skincare trends that are worth trying. He recommends the trick of pressing a cold spoon under your eyes to relieve under-eye puffiness. He's also a fan of turmeric as an ingredient and dietary supplement because of its anti-inflammatory properties.

On the whole, though, he doesn't really like DIY skincare.

"So I'm not a big DIY fan," Shah admitted. "I call it DI-WHY, as in W-H-Y, because why would you do it when you have a lot of really effective and affordable products nowadays? It used to be priced out. You'd be paying 100 dollars for a skincare product. Now you can get great products for much less... And so it's now I feel DI-WHY? Because you're probably going to spend as much money trying to make that product as you would if you just bought one that was already formulated for the skin."

In Shah's opinion, you're better off skipping the trends and going for dermatologist-approved products, which don't have to cost a fortune.

Check out Dr. Shah's skincare videos on TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube.