Location: No Man’s Land, Tobago
Spring and summer are, at least to me, the most beautiful seasons of the year. There is something about sunny bright weather which just automatically puts me in the best of moods. I love the smell of the flowers blossoming, the colours in the parks and the smell of sunscreen in the air. Everyone is outdoors and in colourful summer dresses – it just makes me so happy. But with all the sunshine and outdoor activities, it is so important to look after your skin when you are enjoying your time out and about. Just over ten years ago, I spent a couple of years working at a perfumery in Malta, whilst I was studying for my undergraduate degree. During my time there, I learnt all about how important it is to look after your skin during summer months and the ins and outs of summer skincare. Given that this week has been particularly warm and sunny in London, I thought I would share some of the summer skincare tips that I have learnt to help you maintain that healthy summer glow!
1. Keep Hydrated
This is somewhat of an obvious one but so many people think they drink a lot more water than they actually do. Me being one of them. Drinking water has a huge impact on how the body functions and therefore how your skin looks and feels. In hot weather, you want to be drinking 2 litres per day at a minimum, which equates to approximately 8 large glasses. Best way to get through this is to sip water slowly throughout the day and measure as you go along. Aside from improving your skin’s complexion, there are a whole host of benefits to keeping well hydrated – it even helps sunburn to heal!
2. Sunscreen, Sunscreen, Sunscreen!
This is more of a year round recommendation rather than one for summer months alone. It is a mistake to think that if it’s not a sunny day that the sun’s rays do not reach you. Invest in a good quality sunscreen for your face that is light wear and that sits comfortably underneath your foundation. One that you will wear all year round. I tend to go for a high street brand for the body and a higher end product for the face.
So what level of SPF should you buy for the face and how does SPF work? Contrary to popular belief, the highest possible SPF is not necessarily the best. In fact, you should probably range between 15 and 30 SPF depending on how fair your skin is and how easily you burn. Let’s say it takes ten minutes of you lying in the sun to burn. If you purchase an SPF of 15, then it means that you have 10 minutes x 15, that is 150 minutes, before you need to reapply once again. This does not mean it gives you carte blanche to lay in the sun for hours – still avoid laying in the sun at peak times and be sure to re-apply sunscreen at regular intervals, especially if you are active and sweating or swimming. Below are some of my favourite sunscreens for the face.
3. Exfoliate and Moisturise
Remove dead skin cells that sit on your skin by using a good quality exfoliator two to three times a week. Exfoliating regularly will remove these dead skin cells, leaving your skin looking more radiant. Using a gentle natural grain exfoliator will encourage your summer healthy glow to come through, but be sure not to scrub too hard or to exfoliate sunburnt skin as this could agitate it even further. Follow the exfoliator with a mask and your usual evening moisturiser. If you are spending a lot of time in the sun, be sure to use a moisturiser daily, both morning and evening, to ensure that you are keeping your skin hydrated. If you haven’t followed any of these tips and have given yourself a sunburn, do treat it with something soothing like aloe vera or a high quality after sun. Here are some of my favourite after suns.
4. Enjoy Lazy Summer Evenings
Summer is a time for taking it a little bit easier than the rest of the year. Enjoy those lazy summer evenings either laying on the beach or sitting outside with a glass of wine. Have a few lie ins whenever you are able to. Use this time to catch up on your sleep and your skin will love you for it. Lack of sleep can result in higher stress hormones, which in turn lead to slower collagen production in the skin. This is what maintains the elasticity in the skin, giving us that summer glow.
What are your tips for maintaining fresh, healthy and dewy skin for summer? Would love to hear about your tips in the comments section!