by Kim Smith, Rose City Beauty
Just as you switch to sandals and shed your outer layers as summer approaches, your skincare routine needs a refresh as well. Summer skin has much to battle - heat, sun, sweat, chlorine, saltwater - and it’s best to prep your skin so it can defend itself against the elements.
Repeat after me - plump, moist skin is happy, healthy skin. Think of a piece of bread in a toaster - fresh bread will hold up well to toasting and retain its suppleness; drier, stale bread will burn and become brittle in the same amount of toasting time.
You want to keep your skin healthy so it can withstand the stresses summer brings. Here’s how:
- Ditch your face cream (yes, I’m serious). Face creams are likely the thickest product in your regimen - that’s because they’re designed to sit high up on the skin and coat it at the outer layer (which is great in winter when the air is dry). The problem is that if your skin isn’t in good shape, putting a coating on it isn’t particularly helpful.
- Switch to a serum instead. Serums are the MVP of skincare - they’re lightweight, water-soluble, absorb instantly, and are packed with anti-oxidants and superfoods like essential oils, vitamins, lipids and glycerin. Many contain Vitamin C, which helps with sun spots and discoloration. Serums penetrate down to the lower layers of the skin where wrinkles and dehydration start and add moisture and hydration, which helps skin better retain water. They’re best applied on misted or slightly damp skin. My favorites: Ursa Major Vitamin C Serum and Herbivore Botanicals Cloud Jelly Pink Plumping Hydration Serum.
- Need a little more moisture? Layer a face oil on top of your serum. Face oils are great lightweight moisturizers and are likely all you need in summer. They penetrate deeper than a face cream and plump the skin, plus they’ll
impart a healthy, youthful glow (and who doesn’t need that?). Try Maya Chia Super Luxe Face Oil, Herbivore Botanicals Orchid or Phoenix Face Oil.
- Exfoliate every day. Washcloths or a muslin cloth are the best for daily removal of dead skin. Use one with your cleanser or else just give your face a once-over with a cloth and warm water, morning and night. For a little more grit, try a granular exfoliator once or twice per week. My favorite is French Girl Organics Fleur de Rose Facial Polish
- Choose a sunscreen with zinc instead of chemicals. When it comes to the sun, it's the light you cannot see that should concern you. Visible sunlight is actually pretty weak (it's rays are long and don't possess a lot of energy). Invisible UVA and UVB rays are shorter and much more powerful. UVA rays can go through clouds, windows and even penetrate to the deeper layers of the skin. They're the aging rays. UVB rays affect the outer layers of the skin by causing sunburn, DNA damage and skin cancers. Zinc Oxide acts as a complete block to all types of rays and keeps them from getting to your skin (as opposed to chemical sunscreens which allow the sun to penetrate and then neutralizes it). Try Suntegrity Face Sunscreen + Primer SPF 30.
- Drink water and wear a hat - a cute one.
Rose City Beauty launched in 2017 as the first (and only) toxin-free beauty shop in the state of New Jersey. Founder Kim Smith is a former beauty editor at Glamour and Allure magazines and ran the Public Relations at Bumble and Bumble for 15 years before settling into life as a part-time beauty writer and full-time mom. She resides in Madison, NJ. www.RoseCityBeauty.com.