5 Essential Summer Skincare Tips From AW Experts

There’s so much to love about warmer weather; cloudless blue skies, brighter days and long evenings with friends are just a few. But more time spent outdoors also translates to more exposure to sunlight, sweat and grime, which can quietly wreak havoc on your skin. Think: acne breakouts, irritation, heat rashes and clogged pores. 

Keeping your skin in tip-tip shape during the summer involves more than just layering on the SPF (although that is a crucial, all-important step). Here, our experts share their best tips on surviving the warmer months and keeping your skin well-hydrated and your pores unclogged.

1. Invest in a Solid Cleanser

The heat opens up your pores, leaving them exposed and congested with gunk, grime and environmental pollutants. To add: warm weather also revs up your body’s natural process of perspiration. The first step to clear skin? Washing away the impurities, getting rid of make-up and sloughing away dead skin cells with a proper, gentle cleanser.

But not all cleansers are created equal. Look for a product that washes away the dirt without stripping away your skin’s natural oils. Avoid harsh exfoliants – especially those that tout ingredients like crushed walnut shells or fragments of apricot pits, which can leave behind micro-injuries on your skin. A product like Simply Clean Cleanser gently cleanses your face without robbing the skin of its natural barrier. Alternating that with an exfoliating cleanser such as Sente’ two to three times a week can lead to purer, less oily and more fresh-looking skin in the summer months.

2. Mix Serums into your Routine

A lot of people brush off serums as unnecessary or pointless. However, that couldn’t be further from the truth. These magic potions are filled with concentrated doses of active ingredients that target a host of skin concerns. Want to reduce wrinkles? Retinol and peptides both work to ramp up the production of collagen, which helps improve skin elasticity. 

Want to decrease dark spots? Vitamin C can help with that. Try SkinCeuticals’ Phloretin CF, which pulls triple duty by helping with environmental damage, fine lines, discoloration and texture. Find a light, non-oily hyaluronic acid for retaining moisture that doesn’t leave your skin feeling greasy.

3. Moisturize, And Repeat!

A lot of patients think they don’t have to moisturize during the summer months, but according to AW Plastic Surgery experts, this can actually make oily skin even more oily and dehydrated. That’s where a good moisturizer comes in. Moisturizers are formulated to hold moisture that your skin loses throughout the day. Which moisturizer you choose largely depends on your skin type; if you have dry skin, opt for something a little heavier that can lock in moisture in a more substantial way. If your skin leans on the oily side of things, find an oil-free moisturizer that won’t clog your pores. 

But aside from locking in water, a moisturizer also serves another purpose. Acting as a barrier, it protects your skin from outside environmental elements – think: dust, dirt, grime – and prevents them from drying out or irritating your skin. That’s why it’s important to incorporate a moisturizer into your skincare regimen, not just in the summer, but year-round, too.

4. Find the Right Sunscreen

From your friends and family to your regular dermatologist, anyone will tell you that a solid skincare routine isn’t complete without the holy grail of all products: sunscreen. It’s a hard-and-fast rule that’s ingrained in everyone’s minds – and for good reason. Sunscreen protects your skin from sun damage, staves off wrinkles, and lowers the risk of cancer in a few ways. Depending on the type of sunscreen you opt for, the product will either absorb the sun’s ultraviolet rays, reflect them, or block them from reaching your skin’s deeper layers. 

The question isn’t whether or not you need sunscreen; it’s a matter of which one is right for you. In the summer, your skin gets thicker as a way to adapt and protect itself, so find a sunscreen product that doesn’t clog your pores. When it comes to sun protection factor (SPF), The American Academy of Dermatology recommends springing for SPF 30 or higher. While no sunscreen is perfect, a product with SPF 30 or higher will ward off 97 percent of the sun’s UVB rays. For a well-rounded skincare regimen, finish off with Physical Fusion SPF 50, a matte-finish, non-greasy mineral formula sunblock.

5. Use your Sunscreen Correctly

Invested in sunscreen? That’s a great start. However, here’s the important part: You’ll need to learn how to use it correctly. Patients often think that sunscreen is only reserved for special situations like going to the beach or gearing up for a long hike under the harsh sun. As AW experts say, “We need sunscreen rain, hail, sleet or shine. If it is daylight, there are damaging UV rays.” 

What’s more, patients often think they can get away with a single application. However, that’s another myth worth dispelling. To truly reap the benefits of the product, you’ll need to apply sunscreen close-to 20 minutes before heading outside, and reapply it every hour. A hat and a pair of sunglasses will also come in handy.

When you’re ready to give your skincare regimen a makeover, let us guide you through your options at AW Plastic Surgery. Reach out to us here for a consultation on how to treat your skin concerns and build an effective skincare routine. We’re ready to help you achieve tighter, smoother, younger-looking skin!