Summertime is our season for fun in the sun, but our skincare routines might need a little extra work. Humidity and perspiration can wreak havoc on your skin by clogging your pores with sweat and oil, or just generally causing an imbalance of oils in your skin. That said, an arid heat, especially with very intense sun, can completely dry your skin out, especially if you have dry skin to begin with.
Luckily, there are ways to modify your normal skin care routine to help not only keep your skin under control, but protect it from lasting damage caused by the sun. In this article, we’re going to talk about dealing with heat and humidity, protecting your skin from the sun, summer skin care routine tips for different skin types, ingredients to incorporate into your summer skin care routine, and finally– some miscellaneous tips on improving your summer skin care routine.
Here are some tips and tricks for making sure your summer skin care routine is on point.
IN A NUTSHELL
Main Takeaways: Humidity and sweat can wreak havoc on your skin, clogging your pores. Cleansing your skin twice a day, using a toner, and wearing a sunscreen designed for your face can all help you keep your skin looking its best in the summertime.
Good to Know: SPF 30 is the minimum sunscreen rating you should be using to protect your skin from sun damage.
Dealing with Heat and Humidity
Humidity can cause sweating, which in turn can cause your pores to become clogged. In addition, that sweat is getting all mixed up with the natural oils in your skin, sunblock, and make-up, so your poor old pores are left gasping for fresh air. The key is making sure your summer skin care involves keeping your skin balanced and free of excess oils and impurities.
Here are some steps to take to keep your skin healthy when the humidity is high:
1. Cleanse Your Skin - It’s important to remember that one of the biggest defenses against problematic summer skin is keeping it clean. Your summer skin care routine should always start with cleansing the skin in the morning and evening, preferably with a lightweight, water-based cleanser that’s gentle on the skin, removes dirt and make-up, and above all, will cleanse without drying out the skin.
2. Use a Chemical Exfoliator - Another surefire way to keep your skin clear and smooth is to make sure it’s well exfoliated. Since physical exfoliation can be irritating to skin that has been exposed to the sun, incorporating chemical exfoliation into your summer skin care routine is your best bet.
Although it may sound daunting, chemical exfoliation really just means using a product with a gentle acid (most are plant-based.) A product featuring glycolic acid helps to restore a youthful, glowing look that evens out skin tone. Glycolic acid, an alpha-hydroxy acid, is found naturally in milk, fruits, and sugarcane.
Because they work mostly on the top layer of skin, AHAs are more gentle than BHAs or Beta Hydroxy Acids that work on a deeper level of the skin. This makes AHAs like glycolic acid great for summer skin care. AHAs essentially exfoliate by dissolving the bonds that hold skin together without irritating the skin.
3. Deep Clean With a Detoxifying Mask - A clay or charcoal mask will help you get a deep clean and detoxify your skin during these hot, sweaty summer months. Some masks also include glycolic acid, like our Prince Charcoal detox mask, so you get all the pore unclogging benefits of a clay mask along with a gentle exfoliation. Use it one to three times a week, as needed.
Protecting Your Skin from the Sun
The truth is, the best way to keep your skin from sun damage is to just stay out of the sun. Because that can be very hard to manage during the summer, the next best thing to do is to incorporate sunscreen and sun protection in your summer skin care routine.
Here are a few tips about sun protection that should be a part of your summer skin care routine:
1. Throw out really old sunscreen (but keep the sunscreen from last summer!): Theoretically, sunscreen is meant to be effective for three years; if you happen to find some old sunscreen in a back drawer from a year ago, it’s probably fine.
2. Make sure you’re protecting your lips, scalp, and eyes from the sun: Don’t forget to protect your lips, eyes, and your scalp. These are all areas that get a lot of sun exposure without realizing it.
Lips and eyes in particular are areas that have a tendency to wrinkle easily. Don’t make it worse by not protecting them. And whatever you do, make sure you protect your hands and feet!
3. Make sure to reapply sunscreen: Between perspiration, outdoor activities, and the heat of summer, sunscreen has a tendency to melt off the skin, especially if you’re spending a lot of time in the water. Make absolutely certain you reapply every couple of hours to get the best possible protection.
4. Increase your SPF: Most experts agree that a 30 SPF is the minimum you should wear to properly protect yourself from the sun, especially in the summer.
5. Use a foundation with an SPF: If you just really hate the idea of adding the extra step of putting on sunscreen, consider at least wearing a foundation that includes sun protection.
6. Self-tanning: As proponents of SPF and staying out of the sun in general, you can only imagine what big fans we are of self-tanners. That said, we also understand how carefully it has to be done in order for it to look right! Before you self-tan, be sure to exfoliate your skin evenly.
7. UV clothing: Did you know there was such a thing? There is! And it works! If you tend to sunburn easily, UV clothing is a game-changer.
8. Après-sun: What to do if you get a burn? Well, why would you need this advice? You’re going to use an SPF, being careful not to miss any spots, right? However, if you do get a sunburn, aloe vera gel is your BFF.
Summer Skin Care Routine Tips for Different Skin Types
Summer Skin Care for Dry Skin
We have three words for you: hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Intense heat and sun can not only make having dry skin unattractive, but genuinely painful. A hydrating moisturizer is an absolute must!
But don’t neglect to use a dedicated eye cream to keep the area around your eyes well hydrated. Don’t forget that your lips can become dry and chapped with excessive sun exposure, so keep them hydrated with a lip treatment.
Summer Skin Care for Oily Skin
Those with oily skin have a tough time in the summer, as heat and humidity can cause your oil glands to go into overdrive. The key here is choosing products that help balance and control excess oils. Refresh your skin throughout the day with a toner to balance your skin and keep it properly hydrated. Oil blotting papers are a good idea, too.
Summer Skin Care for Sensitive Skin
You may have heard that spending time in the sun can solve certain issues for those with sensitive skin; while it might be true that the sun may temporarily create the appearance of a smoother complexion, there is no doubt it is a terrible long-term solution that may cause much more serious, potentially irreversible problems later on.
Summer Skin Care for People in their 20s and 30s
If you stay active during the summer, it is super important to make sure you’re getting that sweat off your skin before it starts clogging your pores.
Also, you’re in the age group least likely to use sunscreen – so please, we beg of you, USE SUNSCREEN! No one who has ever lived to see sunspots (or worse) ever wished they’d used less sunscreen.
Specific Ingredients to Incorporate Into Your Summer Skin Care Routine
Some ingredients really help soothe and moisturize the skin, lending themselves to summer skin care in particular. Here are some of the ingredients you should think about incorporating into your summer skin care routine:
- Green tea is an especially gentle ingredient, which contains EGCG (epigallocatechin-3-gallate), a compound that helps control sebum production.
- Aloe Vera is the Queen Bee of soothing ingredients. Nothing will help calm skin like aloe vera.
- Rosehip Oil is wonderfully hydrating, making it great for summer skin that’s been dried out by the sun and heat.
- Vitamin C is a perfect ingredient for those that love the outdoors, as it helps to protect your skin from photodamage.
- Hyaluronic Acid will keep your skin well-hydrated, whether you have naturally dry skin or naturally oily skin.
A Few Pieces of Random Advice About Your Summer Skin Care Routine:
- Carry a toner: We know we usually suggest using toner twice a day, but there’s absolutely no reason you can’t use a gentle, water-based toner throughout the day. Carry your toner around with you during the summer and treat yourself to a little spritz. Not only will it control excess oil and hydrate your skin, it just plain feels great (especially if you keep it in the fridge the night before!)
- Keep skin care products in the fridge: If you’ve never tried it before, there’s nothing better on a hot day than a little dab of eye cream that’s been coolled. The cold can also help reduce the look of puffy eyes as well. For example, our Nectar of the C serum lasts longer if you keep it cold. You can even find little beauty fridges made specifically for your skincare products.
- Cool it on the hot showers: Turn down the heat on your summer showers, so you don’t risk drying out your skin more than necessary.
- Increase your water intake: This cannot be understated.Make sure you up your water intake during the summer to stay hydrated from the inside out.
- Protect your lips, too. When you are dehydrated or spend a lot of time in the sun, your lips can easily become dry and chapped. Use a lip treatment like One Lip Wonder to treat and prevent damage to your lips.
- Treat yourself to a big hat: Who doesn’t love an excuse to buy something new? Order yourself a big sun hat to help keep the sun out of your eyes and your face, neck and scalp protected from the sun.
Those are our tips for keeping your skin healthy and happy in the summer. No need to thank us now—you can do it in 20 years when you look half the age of all your friends!