Dealing with acne can be frustrating and embarrassing no matter what time of the year it is. However, coping with summer acne in 90+ temperatures and high humidity? It’s enough to make you want to spend the next few months with a paper bag over your head. Here are five skin-smart tips to help you, and your acne, weather the next few months.
Sunscreen Now, Good Skin Later
If you suffer from acne, soaking up a little camouflaging color on your face can be very tempting. While your new flush will make pimples look a little less prominent, sun exposure will dry out your skin. That may sound beneficial to you initially, but drying your skin will cause your oil production to increase. If you are on acne medication, it’s doubly important to protect your skin from the sun, as some drugs leave your skin more at risk for a nasty burn.
Sunscreens are not always what they seem, so research your options. Luckily, Consumer Reports has done the hard work for you. Read their report and rankings.
Teen Vogue’s sunscreen buying guide is another good resource.
Tip: Stock up on sunscreen during the late summer sales. Most sunscreens keep their strength for up to three years, but do take note of the expiration dates before you stock up! Living in Texas, you’ll need a good sunscreen all year long.
Exfoliate for Deep Cleansing
With layers of chlorine, sun, wind, and sand building up on our skin, some days we can’t wait to get home and scrub. A little exfoliation is excellent for deep cleaning, particularly if you are prone to breaking out, but resist the urge to rub your face senseless. Be gentle, and use a mild exfoliator a couple of times a week.
Don’t want to invest in an expensive exfoliating product? Add a little baking soda to your regular face wash and voila, homemade exfoliation! Here are some other natural exfoliators that you can find in your home.
Make sure that you are extra diligent with your sunscreen the next day. Your skin will be extra sun-sensitive after your exfoliation.
Eat for Your Skin
In addition to helping your skin from the inside out (and being part of a healthy diet to begin with), research has shown that some foods such as salmon, green tea, citrus fruits, and colorful veggies can help protect your skin from UV damage.
There’s also a new drink out there called UVO, an orange-peach drink that claims to increase your ‘natural’ sun protection. While citrus has healthy-skin benefits, Consumer Reports says to be wary of these claims.
However, while eating these healthy foods may add a little glow to your skin, it does not mean you can forgo sunscreen on the outside!
Work Out. Clean. Repeat.
The Central Texas heat can be a bummer for people who love exercising outside. Aside from being flat out miserable, heat and humidity can wreck havoc on your skin. Find that you break out more in the summer months on your back, bum, shoulders, or chest? Make sure to take off those sweaty clothes and shower as soon as possible after your workout to help prevent blemishes from developing in the first place. Also, try swapping your typical body soap or cleanser for an antibacterial version, or one with benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid.
Keep Your Cool
The combination of acne, sensitive skin and high temperatures can reduce some of us into red-faced wonders. Try spritzing a refreshing skin and face spray for when you need a quick shot of something soothing, fast. This simple recipe from Wellness Mama is one that you can make at home. This spray contains aloe, which has anti-aging properties and moisturizes weightlessly, witch hazel which helps to reduce the oil slick and fight blemishes, and peppermint which adds an exhilarating zing (be careful not to use too much of this potent essential oil).
Is acne getting in the way of you living your best life? Put your acne to work, help yourself and others, and make a little money on the side. We are currently enrolling several acne studies in Austin and New Braunfels.