words Alexa Wang
Sweaty skin, large pores, small pimples, or even acne – in summer you often have to contend with very specific problems. High temperatures can pose real challenges for your skin, and even if you don’t change anything in your skincare routine, everything can still get out of balance.
Suddenly your expensive day cream starts causing small pimples and no longer provides sufficient moisture. Additionally, your pores enlarge because you sweat more, so your makeup will not work effectively – making your entire complexion look much more uneven. That’s why it makes sense to exfoliate and change up your care routine in the summer. So with that said, here are some effective ways to protect your skin this summer.
In hot and humid conditions, you should swap an oil-based cleanser for a gentle, foaming, water-based version so as not to stress the skin even more. Cleansing water with herbal ingredients has a particularly calming effect, while grape extracts or products containing salicylic acid are particularly anti-inflammatory. Experts recommend washing your face with water several times a day during the hot months because in summer you often touch your chin, cheeks, and forehead with your hands and there is more dirt on the surface of the skin due to sweat, which can cause impurities.
Decongestant and cooling products
If you tend to get swollen eyes in hot temperatures, consider keeping a gel mask in the fridge and applying it to your skin for a few minutes. But never use a frozen mask from the freezer, as it can even damage the skin due to the extreme cold. If you just want to treat your skin to a quick refreshment, you can use a cooling facial spray. These sprays give a quick cooling effect and normally contain mint extracts, cucumber, or green tea.
Integrated sun protection factor
In order not to burden your skin with an additional layer of cream and extra sun care, you can choose a day cream that already contains a sun protection factor. A cream with an SPF of 30 or higher can be sufficient for everyday life, but if you are on the beach, you should use SPF 50. Again, there are lighter alternatives, because a compact and too greasy cream can lead to clogged pores, inflammation, and even acne. Those who have acne-prone or oily skin should use fewer products and seek professional advice about their specific skin type.
Take special care of acne
Many people with acne challenges use products containing retinoid to help dry out the skin in a healthy way and keep pores free of oil and dirt. In winter, a low to medium-strength retinoid may be enough to keep acne away. But in heat and humidity, a retinoid of this strength may not be enough to keep skin clear. That is why you should make another appointment with a dermatologist in the summer months in order to switch to a stronger prescription if necessary. However, when using retinoids, it is important to avoid direct and strong sunlight.
Is your face tense and the dry skin on your nose and forehead flaking? Then the skin urgently needs moisture and fat. In order for it to be able to absorb them, the dead skin cells must first be gently removed. Many mild scrubs can help to provide sufficient moisture. A cleansing oil also helps to regenerate the skin’s protective barriers without drying it out. The must-have for dry facial skin is a moisturising face cream that provides the skin with nourishing active ingredients over the long term. Whether it’s hyaluronic acid, lactic acid or aloe vera, what’s great for your skin simply depends on your skin type and the season.
Vegetable oils can work wonders for dry skin. High-quality wheat germ oil, grape seed oil or passion flower seed oil contain unsaturated fatty acids that nourish, refine and protect the skin’s structure. Occasionally, you can try strengthening your dry skin with 1-2 drops of oil, to enjoy a wonderful glow. Massaging body oils onto damp skin after showering actively counteracts dryness. However, if the cream is not absorbed well or leaves a heavy greasy film behind, it is better to keep your hands off it, as pores can become clogged and pimples and blackheads can develop. Even rich creams should be formulated in such a way that they are absorbed after a few minutes.
Vitamin C serum instead of anti-wrinkle cream
Vitamin C is an excellent supplement to care for your skin all year round, but it becomes even more important in summer. Vitamin C helps prevent hyperpigmentation, reduces fine lines, and can also help with collagen production. In addition, a serum is lighter than a day cream, so the skin is not additionally weighed down. Dripping two to three drops onto the skin is sufficient, preferably between the cleansing step and applying the day cream.
If you still want to give your skin an extra boost of moisture, you should use masks and rich creams at night. You can pay attention to particularly calming substances such as aloe vera or rose. On the other hand, if you find rich products on your facial skin uncomfortable and too greasy even at night, you should at least use a nourishing eye cream. Since the skin around the eyes is particularly thin and therefore prone to dryness lines, it should always be kept well moisturised.
Regular skin peeling opens the pores
Dermatologists often tell you not to exfoliate your skin excessively. But in summer, the skin needs extra support to renew cells and remove dead skin cells. For oily skin, in particular, experts recommend including a skin peel in your care routine at least once or twice a week. But with this, allow time for your skin to slowly get used to it and then gradually increase the number of peeling treatments. A particular advantage of peeling creams is that they open the pores and make the skin more receptive to subsequent care products. This effect can also be enhanced with so-called alpha hydroxy acid pads (or AHA) which remove excess oils that also promote acne and blemishes.
Don’t spend too much time in the water
Between days at the beach and everyday sweating, many people shower more than once a day in the summer. However, you should keep the time in the shower short, a maximum of four to five minutes, as experts recommend. This also applies to the time in the pool. Spending too much time in the water can promote excessive drying of the skin and can lead to inflammation or summer eczema, and in some cases dandruff and dry scalp issues, which can form more easily on irritated skin.
Dry skin after taking a bath is neither pleasant nor rare. But in most cases, it’s a solvable problem. Anyone who tends to have dry skin after showering is probably overdoing it with cleansing. The fact is that water removes valuable oils and fat from the skin so the hotter the water is and the longer the water contact lasts, the more intensively the cells dry out. So what’s the best practice for dry skin? Take more showers and fewer full baths during the week to protect against dryness.
Excessive use of shower gels
If you haven’t been working in the garden or doing intensive exercise, your skin is hardly dirty in everyday life. Cleaning large skin areas excessively with shower gel is neither necessary nor sensible. Because even mild cleaning products always have a slightly drying effect. Therefore, skin experts recommend only using shower gels for cleaning the so-called ‘smelly points’ such as under the armpits. A lukewarm shower of water is sufficient for the rest of the body.
Bath oils for protection
If you want to prevent dry skin after bathing or showering, you can use a simple trick to prevent it. Simply massage a generous portion of natural oil such as almond or coconut oil into dry skin, let it soak in briefly, and only then take a shower or bath. The layer of oil nourishes and protects against excessive drying out. The same applies to shower oil and shower cream. These are also ideally applied to dry skin and then rinsed off briefly with water.
Retain residual moisture
After contact with water, a fine film of moisture remains on the skin for a short time. Allowing this residual moisture to remain on your skin pores avoids the problem of uncomfortably tight skin. To do this, massage a portion of natural oil such as olive oil into the slightly damp skin immediately after showering or bathing. The oil combines with the residual moisture and transports it to the inside of the skin. The effect: the skin feels full and healthy.
Towel drying and strong friction
It’s not only excessive scrubbing and hot water that has a dehydrating effect, mechanical friction from aggressive towel drying also removes fat from the skin. Anyone who tends to have dry skin after bathing should therefore be particularly careful when drying it. Instead of rubbing roughly, always dab gently.