The harsh UV rays and heat of the summer sun can leave your skin dry, damaged, and in need of replenishment. The skin is your body’s first line of defence against these severe external elements, so it is important to keep it protected and well-hydrated. Summertime is when we tend to show the most skin, so here are my top tips for preserving its longevity and luminosity in the coming warmer months.
1. Sun protection is key:
Even on a cloudy summer day, your skin can be exposed to damaging and aging UVA rays, so always remember your mineral sunblock. Sunscreens containing natural zinc oxide such as UberZinc not only slow the aging process, but they also act as a barrier; shielding your skin from the harsh UVA/B rays that damage skin cells.
2. Drink plenty of water:
Water hydrates the entire body – your skin cells included! When you perspire, your skin loses water, and if you don’t drink enough of it, you will suffer dehydration - this is your body’s way of telling you that it’s struggling to support vital functions. Your skin is the largest organ in your body, and your body is 80% water, so it’s absolutely essential to keep your fluids up! Our skin appears plump and dewy when our skin cells are hydrated and firm. This is when light evenly reflects off our smooth, hydrated skin surface.
3. Apply moisturizer immediately after showering:
Moisturize straight after you shower: that goes for the body as well as the face! We often shower more in summer, which may cause the skin to be stripped of its natural oils. Your skin is more hydrated immediately after showering, so this is the best time to apply an effective moisturizer and lock in the water.
4. Keep cool in bed and invest in bamboo:
Opt for summer lightweight blankets with natural fibers to let your skin breathe in the warmer temperatures. Cotton and bamboo are great. I personally can’t live without my bamboo sheets as they are so cool and breathable, they wick away moisture, neutralize odors, help reduce dust mite growth and are a better choice for the environment. The antibacterial properties of bamboo also help protect the skin from irritation, infection and are highly recommended as the perfect bedding for acne sufferers. If you suffer from acne, I recommend changing your sheets twice weekly to avoid bacterial build-up on bedding. Always wash your bamboo sheets in cool water with a mild detergent and avoid tumble drying.
5. What to do if you're sunburnt:
Sorry, but the damage is largely done…even so, you still need to reduce the inflammation. Look for skincare products with niacinamide, aloe vera, betaine, and Canadian Willowherb. Aloe vera is well-known for its calming properties as a powerful anti-inflammatory. Apply daily to relieve redness, diminish the burning sensation, and replenish moisture in parched skin.
Niacinamide in XCell B will help create the vital proteins to repair the damaged barrier and increases the skin’s natural ceramides for locking in water following sunburn. Niacinamide is also known for its anti-inflammatory properties, so this is a must-have for sun damage.
6. Shower after a summer pool dip:
Chlorinated pools contain harsh chemicals that strip the skin of good bacteria, moisture and natural oils and may therefore cause irritation. Always take a lukewarm shower to rinse off after a dip in the pool and apply a good hydrating body lotion.
7. Have you tried using hair conditioner as shaving cream?
Try using hair conditioner as shaving cream to show off smooth summer skin! When you use the conditioner, it is attracted to, and coats the hair making the shave smoother with less irritation and likelihood of shaving cuts.
8. Avoid tanning and long exposure to sun:
I know we all want that summer glow, but tanned skin is nature’s warning that your skin is being severely damaged. Especially in direct and extended UV exposure, particularly in the middle of the day speeds up cell damage and mutation. This accelerates the aging process and increases pigmentation, uneven skin tone, wrinkles, and sunspots. However, don’t freak out but….no sunlight is almost more damaging than too much! Almost all living organisms need light to survive. Enjoy a little sunlight, especially in the early morning between 7am and 9am. If sunlight reaches your eyes soon after you wake up it helps to reduce the stress hormone cortisol and regulate melatonin to improve the quality of sleep. Morning light is also the best time for getting your vital vitamin D intake.