Everyone knows, the secret to flawless beauty is great skin. This is especially true in the hot summer months when you naturally want to show a little more of it! But let's be real, summertime heat and humidity (not to mention chlorine and saltwater) can have less-than-beautiful effects on our skin. Here are few summer tips that will help you get your glow on so you can breeze through summer beautifully!
Summer is all about baring skin and showing off that beautiful (fake) summer tan. But in order to have great looking skin to show off, you need to get your skin ready for summer and reverse any signs of skin neglect from leftover from winter! Here are a few beauty tips to keep you looking gorgeous all summer long!
1. Exfoliate... for clearer, smoother skin.
It is so important to exfoliate your skin. Think of it like taking out the trash—do it a few times a week to slough off dry skin and get rid of self-tanner from bronzing sessions past. This one skin care step is the key to smooth, glowing skin. Your body sheds skin cells at an amazing rate every minute of every day. If you don't get rid of them, they'll just sit on the very top layer of your skin which makes your skin look dull and feel dry.
- For your face - The best time to exfoliate is in the morning. Our skin repairs itself at night therefore the morning is the perfect time for scrubbing away those dead skin cells. There are some great facial scrubs on the market, but a washcloth works (almost) as well. Don't over-exfoliate or use a product with granules that can tear at the skin. Rub the product in a circular motion for 30 seconds and then rinse off with lukewarm -- never hot -- water. You can also take your exfoliating one step further with stronger products like microdermabrasion or chemical peels.
- For your body - Forget those fluffy nylon bath things you get with a bottle of body wash. And throw out that bacteria-infested loofah, which is too abrasive on most of your skin anyway. Instead, consider the basic washcloth your best friend when it comes to exfoliating both your face and your body. A dry bath brush is another great tool. (You know, that long brush with the wooden handle hanging in the shower no one uses!) You simply give yourself a good dry-brushing from feet on up and then wash off in the shower. Then there is my favorite... the gloves. I use them to scrub my skin in a circular motion. Nothing works better, in my opinion. There are body scrubs for exfoliating the body as well. For dryer skin, opt for a sugar scrub instead of a salt-based scrub; although salt detoxifies and draws out impurities, it can also be dehydrating.
- Don't forget your feet - It's sandal season ladies. It only takes two minutes every shower to keep feet in great shape for summer. At the end of every shower, exfoliate the bottoms of your feet with a pumice stone for about 1 minute per foot. Make sure to scrub around the toes and the the entire heel. Dry, cracked heels are even less attractive than a grown-out pedicure! Daily care will keep your feet soft and supple during sandal season.
2. Get that summer glow...from a bottle!
I always feel prettier (and skinnier) when I'm tan. And trust me, I know that nothing feels better than the sunshine on your face, but don't do it! You have so many choices when it comes to adding a little summer tint to your skin, Tanning outside, or using a tanning bed shouldn't be among those choices. Using a sunless tanner will give your skin a beautiful glow to start the summer without damaging your skin. (I wish someone had told me this when I was 20!)
3. Moisturize... head to toe.
When the weather is hot and humid, the last thing you want to do is put a heavy cream on your face or body during the summer. It will just melt off as you sweat and will form an extra layer on your skin that will be pesky and greasy when it comes into contact with unusually high temperatures. This is why many people neglect moisturizer when temperatures are high. That's a mistake. It is important to keep your skin hydrated. Here are a few tips for summer:
- Go light on your face - Opt for a moisturizer that is light and easily absorbed into the skin, especially on your face. Give special attention to the area around your eyes. This part of the face is most sensitive to the effects of UV rays and dryness. That is why it is important to apply moisturizer on the skin around the eyes twice a day to prevent small wrinkles and dryness.
- For your body - Self tanners can be drying on the skin. The key to keeping that summer glow is proper hydration. Not only will it keep your skin healthier, it is what will make your glow last. Avoid oil-rich formulas. Opt for basic lotions that aren't oil-based, and moisturize in the shower or right after.
- Hands & feet - Your hands and feet will see much more exposure this summer, so keep them in tip-top shape with a moisturizer that sinks into skin, but doesn't leave it greasy. There are many hand and foot specific products on the market, but a light, easily absorbed moisturizer will do the trick every time. Remember, don't go too thick! You don't want to be sliding around in those flip flops.
- Good skin starts from the inside out - Keeping your body hydrated is essential to maintaining a healthy, glowing complexion. It is especially important during the summer. When skin dries out it flakes, so it will shed sooner rather than later. To ensure cells stay hydrated, you need to feed them from the inside as well as from the outside. That means keeping up your water intake, especially in the sun when you lose more water through sweating.
4. Use Sunscreen... every day, every where.
If there was only one piece of advice I could go back and tell my younger self, it would be to WEAR SUNSCREEN. I can't stress this enough. Wear it. Every day, every where. And throw away last year’s sunscreen, go buy a new bottle. Sunscreens aren't meant to last forever, and seeing as most people don't use as much as they should you probably have a bottle or two stored away somewhere in your home. Be safe and buy a new sunscreen. Here are a few more sunscreen rules to remember:
- Keep your face protected from the sun - This means SPF of at least 40, preferably higher. And wear a hat when at the pool or the beach.
- Protect your pout - The sun’s rays are drying on the delicate lip tissue. To keep your lips luscious, protect them with lip balm with an SPF 15 or higher and reapply regularly when outdoors.
- Don’t forget to protect your other parts - Studies show while most women know to put sunscreen on their faces, they skip their chests, hands and necks. Who wants to have 80-year-old hands and a 60-year-old face? The thin skin on your hands wrinkles and pigments easily, so be sure to use sunblock daily.
It's going to be a gorgeous summer darling... enjoy!