Hopefully, as the country reopens, you are finally getting a chance to get out and enjoy some summer activities. Day hikes, river floats, beach trips, and backyard barbeques can all be beneficial for you and your family, providing a chance to exercise, get some sun, and spend quality time together.
We want to remind you not to neglect your skin during the summer months, though. Sun exposure, extra sweat, and long nights can lead to skin damage, acne breakouts, and redness, and you don’t want that.
Below, we share the 7 most common summer skincare mistakes you’ll want to avoid so you can keep your skin looking healthy and radiant all summer long.
1. Leaving your hat and sunglasses at home.
UV rays can damage your skin and lead to skin cancer. Sunscreen is important, but perhaps even more important are physical barriers between you and the sun. That includes hats, sunglasses, shirts, slacks, and umbrellas that help shield your skin.
Studies show that sunscreen helps reduce your risk of skin cancer by about 50 percent, but what about the other 50 percent? To keep your skin safe, make sure you dress appropriately and reapply your sunscreen at least once every two hours.
2. Skipping cleansing.
With the long daylight hours, it’s easy to stay out late, and when you get home, you may not feel like washing your face. Skipping cleansing is a big mistake though, particularly in the summer when skin oils, makeup, dirt, and pollutants can collect on your skin throughout the day.
If you don’t wash before bed, all those impurities will settle into your skin overnight, leaving you with problems the following morning. These may include acne, dullness, redness, irritation, or damage that can accelerate aging.
Wash your face every night, without exception!
3. Exfoliating in the morning.
Exfoliation is important year-round. It helps you slough off dead skin cells so younger cells can emerge from underneath, which keeps your skin looking young. You should always exfoliate at night, however, particularly during the summer months.
When you exfoliate, you make the skin more vulnerable to harmful UV rays. Exfoliating in the morning can open up your skin to more sun damage. Exfoliating at night gives your skin time to recover.
4. Waxing or shaving right before going to the beach or pool.
When you wax or shave your skin, you can create tiny wounds in your skin. That leaves you more vulnerable to microorganisms that may slip in through those wounds and cause infections. Both beach water and pool water can be home to some infectious organisms.
Waxing and shaving also leave skin more vulnerable to irritation, so always give yourself at least 24 hours between these activities and heading out for fun in the water.
5. Neglecting your weekly masks.
Masking is easy to do in the winter, as we often have more time inside to pamper our skin. When we head outdoors during the summer months, we may neglect masking, but that’s a mistake. The summer weather can wreak havoc on your skin—using a regular oil-absorbing or hydrating mask (depending on your skin type) can go a long way toward keeping your skin looking it’s best.
6. Forgetting to protect your lips.
The skin on your lips is thinner and more fragile than the rest of the skin on your face, and it also lacks the melanin (skin pigment) that protects the rest of your skin from the sun, making your lips and the skin around them more susceptible to UV damage and sunburns.
The lips also dry out sooner than the rest of the skin, which is why chapped, torn lips are more common in the summer.
It’s a mistake to ignore your lips in the summer. Exfoliate at least once a week with a sugar scrub and a washcloth, then apply a restorative ointment or balm to help repair damage and moisturize the skin. (We recommend our Restorative Skin Balm.)
Finally, look for a daytime lip balm that has at least an SPF 30 protection.
7. Using too many acid-based products.
If you love to use hydroxy acids on your skin to exfoliate and slow aging, consider using them less often in the summer. Retinols, glycolic acid, lactic acid, malic acid, and salicylic acids are all helpful anti-aging ingredients, but they also leave the skin more vulnerable to UV damage.
Watch your skin for signs of sun damage, like redness, irritation, dark spots, splotches, and fine lines. Then consider cutting back on how often you’re using your acid-based products.
Do you keep up your skincare during the summer months?