How to Summer-ize your Skincare

Summer is the season to enjoy lazy days, sultry evenings and lots of outside time. But if you want your skin to stay flawless, you gotta be sun-smart! Here’s a crash course on must-dos for warm weather.

Make sunscreen part of your routine. Even if you’re not beach-bound, those rays can still find you when you’re outdoors. Protect skin with a sunblock labeled broad spectrum; this kind of formula protects against both UVA and UVB rays. Use enough for ample coverage: experts recommend a full teaspoon for your face and a shot glass sized amount for your body. If you’ll be in the sun, apply it every two hours. Sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat are also great ways to stay sun-safe and stylish.

Stay hydrated, inside and out. Drinking lots of water not only fights thirst, but it replenishes fluids you lose through perspiration. And if your skin is prone to summer dryness, indulge in a rich moisturizer, head to toe. When you’re on the go, you can easily boost that moisture–and cool off at the same time–with a hydrating face spritzer. Personally, I love Caudalie’s Grape Water Spray. So refreshing!

Nix the perfume when you’re outside. Your favorite scent may be lovely, but it may also boost your chances of burning–or acquiring unglamorous pigment changes to your skin. Some fragrances contain citrus notes, which are photosensitive and can cause dark spots to develop in sunlight. Since perfume can also attract insects, that’s another good reason to keep in indoors.

Know how to give sunburn a quick fix. If you do get a sunburn, the goal is to reduce inflammation—and quickly! First, take an aspirin or ibuprofen tablet to diminish redness. Then, soak a facecloth in a bowl of ice; apply the icy compress gently to sunburned skin for about 10 minutes. Finally, dab some hydrocortisone cream into the affected areas to ease soreness and help healing.

Know how to repair long-term sun damage. It can’t be emphasized enough: Sun exposure ages skin in the worst ways. Long term, those rays cause sagging, wrinkles and especially brown spots, even if you haven’t actually suffered a sunburn. To eradicate some of the damage, try products that contain tretinoin, azelaic acid, and kojic acid: all of these will help fade superficial brown spots so they’re less noticeable. For more intensive treatment, try chemical peels, intense pulsed light, or micro-needling. And stay sun-smart to keep further damage to a minimum! 

Suzi Barnett