Summer might be the most fun time of the year, but all of the sweat (thanks, humidity) and damage from living #thatoutdoorlife can wreak havoc on your skin. Increased perspiration and constant sunscreen application can clog pores quick and slow cellular turnover, which can result in breakouts aplenty and dull skin, respectively. But that doesn’t mean you can’t fake that smooth glow all summer long. As the Chief Formulator of Osmia Organics natural skincare brand, I know a thing or two about how to keep your skin happy, healthy and nourished while you have fun in the sun. Scroll through for eight simple skincare tips you should swear by for the rest of the season.
1. Wash your face every night, no matter what: If you skip the morning session, that’s okay, but you need to wash off all sunscreen, sweat and makeup at the end of each day. Try a luxury facial soap on for size to make the chore feel more special, or a liquid cleanser like Acure Organics Sensitive Facial Cleanser ($10). If you’re exercising daily, try to splash water on your face after working out — sweat left on the skin can be irritating and cause breakouts.
2. Skip your heavy night cream: Sebaceous glands in your skin produce an oily substance called sebum to help waterproof the skin and prevent water loss (it’s one of your skin’s main functions). Decreased sebum production by the skin in the winter months (think: dry skin) sometimes requires a heavier cream to help nourish the skin and retain moisture. In the summer though, sebum production naturally increases — along with blink-and-its-there breakouts. You can help down-regulate the glandular activity — aka help keep your zits at bay — by using a balancing serum like Osmia Organics Facial Calibration Serum ($50). Try using the lighter serum as an evening moisturizer and give your skin two weeks to adjust.
3. Clean your hands often, and try not to touch your face too much: Your mom was right when she scolded you about this as a kid: bacteria and oil from your hands, which touch everything, can cause breakouts. When you do feel a pimple brewing, use a gentle yet effective spot treatment like this cult fave, our Osmia Organics Spot Treatment ($22), that can help prevent the blemish from surfacing at all. Apply overnight where it can do its work when your skin is clean and you are catching up on beauty sleep.
4. Go with more makeup-free days: Fact: You’re beautiful just as you are. And since it’s summer, your skin will especially appreciate a less-is-more philosophy when it comes to makeup. Pare down your daily go-tos for a more au-naturale look with just a touch of mascara and a lip gloss. If you feel you need more coverage, try a tinted sunscreen instead of foundation like Juice Beauty Organic SPF 30 Tinted Mineral Moisturizer BB ($29).
5. Make zinc + titanium your sun protection BFFs: Memorize these two ingredients: zinc and titanium. When it comes to sun protection, these natural barrier screens will block UV rays better than chemical blockers and lower your risk of post-lather irritation or allergic reaction. The only downside is that they can leave a pasty residue or be heavy on the face if they are in an oil-based formula, so look for one that absorbs quickly and has a lotion-like texture rather than a balm, like Coola Organic Sunscreen Mineral Face SPF 30 Matte Cucumber ($36).
6. Create a simple post-beach beauty routine: Salt water dried on the skin can be irritating and drying. If you’re at the beach, take a real DIY approach and use bit of fresh water (so soothing from your icy water bottle!) and a washcloth to wipe down your face and neck after you come out of the waves. For an extra pick-me-up after your fun in the sun, carry a pack of face towelettes like Acure Organics Unscented Argan Oil Towelettes ($7) in your beach tote.
7. Keep a bottle of spray toner in the fridge. When you’re hot, the blood vessels in your skin dilate to help cool you down, making your face look red and irritated. By cooling your face with a chilled toner or even a thermal water spray like Eau Thermale Avène Thermal Spring Water ($9), you can keep your face looking calm and even. Stick it in your purse on the way out the door and spritz with abandon throughout the day!
8. Do not use face creams or serums with citrus essential oils: For summer months or during times when you plan on being in the sun 24/7, stash your products that contain expressed citrus essential oils like like orange, lemon, lime or grapefruit. They can cause something called a phototoxicity reaction, which can scar and leave permanent damage to your skin. Instead, try using products with essential oils like lavender, rose, rosemary or sandalwood, which have wonderful skin-soothing properties but don’t cause trouble when exposed to UV light. MV Organic Skincare has a Rose Soothing & Protective Moisturizer ($40) that’s a celeb makeup artist fave.
How are you transitioning to summer skincare? Share with us in the comments below.