Care for your skin during the warmer weather and get that natural glow, inside and out.
Summer is a time for healthy foods, being outdoors more, and generally living a bit healthier. But we must remember it is also a time when the sun’s rays are at their strongest, and so our skincare needs extra attention to ensure it’s protected and nourished.
But how can we do this naturally, and without overloading on chemicals? And what are the most obvious signs you may have if your skin isn’t in the best of health?
Ingrid Hume is a natural skincare expert, and Marketing Manager at Pravera, which has ranges in its portfolio to include lavera, Benecos and ORGANii. She explained: “Our overall state of our health impacts the condition of the skin, hair and nails. A variety of factors can affect the condition, such as smoking, sun damage, medications and nutrition. Poor hygiene habits can contribute to unhealthy skin, failing to wash your skin morning and night can cause dirt and grime to build up on the skin, eventually clogging the pores, dry skin, acne, breakouts, and wrinkles.
You may be using the incorrect skincare products for your skin type which can cause irritations, breakouts or redness. Skin can look dull, dehydrated, grey, have breakouts, redness, and irritation.
“The best way to keep our skin, hair and nails in the best condition possible is to have a well-balanced diet, plenty of green leafy vegetables and fruits, along with portions of protein and healthy fats and grains. Practice goody hygiene and wash your face twice a day, morning and night, to remove dirt and grime from the skin, use the correct skincare products for your skin type. If you have sensitive skin, do not use aggressive skincare products as this will irritate the skin. Most importantly, get enough sleep, drink water and use a moisturiser to keep skin hydrated.”
Watch the chemicals
Many conventional skincare products contain a cocktail of chemicals, which is why natural and organic choices are good options as they will be free of the most undesirable.
In terms of what to watch out for, Ingrid advised: “Mineral oils like petroleum can irritate the skin and cause sensitivity, log pores and interferes with the skin’s ability to eliminate toxins, promoting acnes and other skin complaints. It slows down the skin’s function and cell developments, resulting in premature skin ageing.
“Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) are synthetic chemicals found in conventional products that foam, for example, cleansers, shampoos, and shower gels. SLSs can irritate the skin. And watch toxic sunscreens, which include oxybenzone and octinoxate – when these chemicals are exposed to sunlight, reactions occur with the skin causing inflammation, irritation and allergic reactions.”
She also pointed out: “Aluminium/aluminium chloride is found in conventional deodorants. Aluminium compounds found in conventional deodorants blocks the sweat duct in the underarm and stops the flow of sweat to the skin’s surface, which then forces toxins to flow back into the bloodstream. These toxins can cause skin sensitivity, irritations and rashes.”
Summer skin guide
Our skincare needs will change with the seasons, so what should you be considering for the summer?
“During the summer months, our skin tends to become dehydrated due to spending a lot of time in the sun, exercising or drinking alcohol. Dehydrated skin can cause dark circles around the eyes and increase fine lines and wrinkles on the skin, making it look dull. Hydrate your skin from the inside out by drinking plenty of fluids throughout the day. With a hydrated body, your skin will look and feel healthy, refreshed and radiant throughout the summer,” Ingrid suggested.
“The heat and humidity can cause breakouts and acne on the skin, more so in oily-prone skin. The heat and humidity intensifies oil production, and can clog the pores, which results in more breakouts. Using a toner twice a day helps to remove excess oil on the skin. The astringent properties of the toner help to soothe and cool the skin as it closes the pores and controls oil production.
“Sun damage can lead to premature skin ageing, wrinkles, pigmentation, dry and uneven skin so we need to keep our skin protected from these harmful, skin damaging UV rays. No matter what skin type you have the sun will react with it and you should always wear sun protection with a minimum of SPF 20 should be applied to your skin daily. Using a mineral natural sun protection cream means you can enjoy the sun immediately upon application, whereas a conventional sun cream means you have to wait around 20 minutes for it to work and protect your skin.”
In terms of an effective everyday routine, there are some simple steps to keep it glowing naturally.
Ingrid recommended: “During the winter and spring, we tend to nourish our skin more due to the colder weather and therefore use a rich moisturising face cream. In the summer, our skin doesn’t require as much nourishment so change to a light face cream or a face fluid, perhaps one with an SPF to protect sun spots, freckles and early signs of ageing.
“Sun exposure will gradually thin the skin around the eyes and lip area and cause wrinkles. It is advisable to invest in a good natural and organic eye cream and lip balm to protect these delicate areas on the face. And exfoliate your skin once a week during the summer to remove the build-up of dead skin cells and help to keep pores clear. Doing this helps to keep skin bright, rejuvenated and softer.”