Every now and then, a skin care trend pops up that leaves us scratching our heads in wonderment. Many of these trends are just plain silly, if not downright dangerous.

The “Caveman Regimen” falls somewhere in the middle. For those who may not know, the trend involves stopping the use of all skin care products to mimic the way in which our Paleolithic ancestors treated their skin.

In other words, the Caveman Regimen involves doing absolutely nothing to take care of your skin. Is it safe? Is it effective? Here is what you need to know:

  • The Caveman Regimen is a skin care trend in which a person stops washing their face or treating their acne with skin care products.
  • This hands-off approach is appealing to men because it requires no effort.
  • There is no evidence to support this approach. In fact, it can speed up signs of aging and make your breakouts worse.

We understand why guys would be attracted to this trend. After all, it takes zero effort, which leaves more time in the mornings for other things (i.e., sleep). But gentlemen, we have four good reasons why you shouldn’t touch this trend with a 10-foot pole:

scientists looking through microscope

There Is Zero Evidence to Support the Caveman Regimen

The number one reason why we can’t get behind this idea: There is no scientific evidence to support it. If we’re going to stand behind a skin care trend, it needs much more than anecdotal evidence.

On the other hand, there is plenty of scientific evidence to support the benefits that certain skin care ingredients offer. For example, study after study has shown that Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) has anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce redness and discoloration. There is also plenty of research to support the use of peptides in skin care products to reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

However, there are no scientific studies to suggest that those who use skin care products and acne treatments are somehow worse off than those who forgo them entirely.

There Are Several Flaws in the Trend

You’ll find plenty of people on the internet who claim that not using anything to treat their face somehow solved their breakouts. However, there are a few reasons why not using products could have resulted in clearer skin for these people.

The most obvious reason is that they were using bad skin care products to treat their skin. There is no shortage of skin care products on the market that can dry out your skin and make acne worse. In this case, it makes perfect sense that not using skin care products would benefit their skin.

Another obvious flaw? There are several reasons why a person can get acne, including hormones, dietary habits and genetics. Not using skin care products won’t suddenly alter genetics, nor will it change how your body responds to certain stimuli which can increase the production of acne-causing hormones.

Not Doing Anything Can Damage Your Skin

Trying the Caveman Regimen for a week may not result in anything but a bad breakout. However, sticking to this regimen can have serious repercussions for your skin. 

Not washing your face properly can result in regular acne breakouts, which can potentially result in scarring—yes, even when you don’t pop them! Similarly, not washing your face with a men’s facial cleanser can lead to signs of premature aging and give your skin a dull appearance.

The best way to take care of your skin is by establishing a regular skin care regimen using products that are formulated specifically for your skin. That means no fragrances, dyes or other skin-irritating products.

man with question mark stuck on forehead

Skin Care Trends Are Rarely Born Out of Logic

People will do insane things for the sake of beauty. Just take a quick look at history to get a sense of how far people will go:

  • In the 18th century, people would put leeches on themselves to suck their blood and achieve a paler complexion.
  • The ancient Romans and Egyptians would put mercury on their skin to lighten their appearance. Mercury is extremely toxic and long-term use of the heavy metal has been linked to numerous neurological and dermatologic disorders.
  • Before we knew the dangers of radium, people in the early 20th century were putting the highly radioactive element into skin care creams to brighten the skin.

The Caveman Regimen may not be on the same level as poisoning your skin with mercury but make no mistake: There is no logic to this trend and it can have repercussions for your skin.

Keep it Simple, but Not That Simple

We’ve heard our fair share of bad skin care advice over the years, but the “Caveman Regimen” is up there with the worst. While we understand the appeal of doing nothing to achieve a glowing complexion, this skin care trend won’t help you achieve the long-term benefits of a good skin care regimen.