Summer skincare is huge – you need only look to all the recently launched celebrity skincare lines, from Kim Kardashian’s SKKN to Hailey Bieber’s Rhode. But are you getting everything you need to keep your skin healthy this season?
Despite the popularity of star-backed skincare, don’t rely on them to be completely comprehensive – especially if they’re missing staples like SPF. This is the case for Kardashian, Bieber and other new celeb-backed product lines.
“I’m not opposed to their core products because they don’t have SPF. As long as you’re not stating that you don’t need it,” explains Dr. Michelle Henry, dermatologist and founder of Skin & Aesthetic Surgery of Manhattan. “It just means that you have to complement their products with your own SPF.”
We talked to dermatologists to find out what you may be missing from you summertime skincare routine.
Don’t skimp on sunscreen
Just how vital is the SPF step?
Dr. Samer Jaber, a dermatologist at Washington Square Dermatology in New York, calls it the “most important part of any skin care anti-aging regimen.” It’s also important in preventing skin cancer.
He recommends using a broad spectrum SPF 30 or higher sunscreen daily.
“The biggest mistake I see in my patients is forgetting to reapply sunscreen. Remember sunscreen should re-applied at least every two hours when you are outside. The other major miss is not using a water resistant sunscreen when sweating or swimming – please check the label!”
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Henry adds that sunscreen is important no matter the season, but especially during the sunny summer months. It’s also for everyone.
“All skin types,” she says. “Even the deepest, darkest skin.”
Don’t skip your scalp
One place you may be forgetting to SPF? Your scalp. If you have thin or balding hair, style your hair parted or aren’t wearing a protective covering like a hat, be sure to protect that skin as well.
Henry says she operates on skin cancers on the scalp “all the time.”
“That’s an area that’s just getting chronic sun exposure over the course of your life and so it’s really important that we always consider like those areas … and protect them.”
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Cater products to the season
Another mistake people make is not swapping their skincare for the summer season, Henry says.
“They don’t transition from their cream-based, heavier cleansers to a more robust foam or gel cleanser,” she explains. “Or they overdo it and don’t realize that you still have to consider your skin type. So just because it’s summertime, if you’re someone who’s quite sensitive, you can’t just jump to the harsher cleansers just because it’s summertime.”
Even if you’re spending a lot of time in the hot sun and sweating, Jaber says you may want to take it easy on any irritating or exfoliating skin products.
“I see a lot of patients in the summer months coming in with facial dermatitis from overuse of products that compromise the skin barrier,” he explains.
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Salt, A/C, chlorine – oh my!
In addition to sweat and sun, our skin can be exposed to other things during the summertime like harsh air conditioning, pool chlorine and salt from the ocean – all things to consider in taking care of your skin.
“What’s most important is to listen to your skin,” Henry advises. “If you’re feeling like you’re too dry even during the summer months. Although we’re not having that brutal cold that we get typically get in the winter, those air conditioners can still leach moisture from your skin the same way that the radiator would leach moisture from your skin.”
Let’s not forget lip care
Not only can lips get dry during the summer, they can also burn.
Henry suggests investing in lip balms that have SPF.
“There’s so many on the market now. I see a lot of skin cancers on the lips as well, so you need to be careful.”
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