5 tips for treating dry skin in the summer
The sun is out and you’re beach ready, but dry skin is still making you miserable. While many people think of dry skin as a winter problem, dry skin can still show up during the summer. Here are the most common causes of summer dry skin, and how to treat them so you have gorgeous, glowing skin all summer long!
1. Limit the AC
Air conditioning feels awesome when the heat is rising outside, but it can be very drying for your skin. This is especially true in arid or desert climates like the southwestern states. Try to avoid spending too much time in air conditioned rooms, or if that isn’t possible, invest in a humidifier. Humidifiers aren’t expensive, and they put important moisture back into the air. Your skin will love you for it!
2. Avoid UV light
Ultraviolet light (sunlight) is extremely damaging to skin. Not only does it cause discoloration, wrinkles, and even cancer, but getting too much sun is a one-way ticket to dry skin. Sunburn doesn’t just dry out the top layer either. The UV light in sunlight destroys antioxidants and breaks down nourishing lipids in your skin. This leads to dryness that lasts long after the sunburn peels.
The simplest solution to avoid UV light is to stay out of the sun whenever possible. Especially during the hours of 10am-4pm, when sunlight is strongest. If you do have to go outside, wear a large-brimmed hat to shield your face, stay in the shade, and wear sunscreen. You should use SPF 30 or higher, and reapply sunscreen at least every two hours.
3. Be mindful of salt water and chlorine
There’s nothing like a dip in the sea or a pool to make you feel like summer has finally arrived. However both salt water and chlorine are incredibly drying for skin, and can strip your skin’s protective oils. Water can also concentrate UV light and make sunburn worse. To stay safe and protect your skin, wear water-resistant sunscreen, and shower after swimming to wash away salt and chlorine. Then be generous with the moisturizer. If you apply it while your skin is still damp, it will lock in even more hydration, helping your skin to recover.
4. Save retinol treatments for night
Retinol is an amazing skincare ingredient, but it can make your skin more sensitive to UV light. This leads to sunburn after only limited exposure. To avoid causing sun damage to your skin, apply retinol and retinoids as part of your evening routine, never during the day. And if you’re planning a summer beach vacation, consider skipping retinol completely. No amount of anti-aging serum can undo the UV damage that wearing retinol in bright sunlight can do! If you do use retinoids in the summer, always wear SPF 30 or higher, even on cloudy days.
5. Stay hydrated
The extra heat in summer makes us all sweat a little more, and that means you lose more moisture during the summer than in any other season. Drink plenty of water to replenish what you lose. A 160lb person needs to drink about a gallon per day. And cut back on diuretics like caffeine and alcohol! You might think you’re staying hydrated, but these drinks will only make you lose moisture faster.
Bonus: Enjoy cool showers
Hot water can quickly dry your skin out and strip its protective barrier. One of the best things about summer is how good a cool shower feels. Don’t be afraid to turn down the temperature and pamper your skin without causing damage! If you want to show off summer-ready legs, use a nourishing shaving gel. Never shave dry, as that will also cause irritation and flaking skin.
Love your skin in the summer
Whatever climate you live in, summer is a wonderful season to be outdoors. However it can be hard on your skin, leading to dryness and irritation. Taking a few simple precautions will protect your skin from damage caused by UV light, air conditioning, salt and chlorine. Enjoy beautiful skin all summer long!