We all love the warm sun. The sun’s rays make us feel good, and in the short term, make us look good. But our love affair with the sun is not a two way street! Exposure to sun causes most of the wrinkles and age spots on our face. Believe it or not, a woman at the age of 40 who has consistently protected her skin from the sun will actually have the same skin condition as that of a 30-year-old woman.
Studies have shown that people don’t use enough sunscreen. In a recent study by Dr. Aaron Farberg of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York, dermatologists agree that most sunscreens are safe and that sunscreen reduces photoaging (premature aging of the skin) and lowers the risk of skin cancer.
Unprotected exposure to the sun will age you faster than even smoking, causing:
- Pre-cancerous (actinic keratosis) and cancerous (basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma) skin lesions—caused by loss of the skin’s immune function
- Benign tumors
- Fine and coarse wrinkles
- Discolored areas of the skin, called hyper pigmentation;
- Sallowness—a yellow discoloration of the skin;
- Telangiectasias—the dilation of small blood vessels under the skin;
- Elastosis—the destruction of the elastic tissue causing lines and wrinkles.
While the temperatures are much warmer, we still have to protect our skin – actually, even more so. The sun’s UVA and UVB rays are harmful throughout the year, but our exposure levels are much higher in summer. For that reason, summer is a good time to focus on heat and sun protection for the skin.
Since it can be difficult to know exactly when to switch over to your summer skin care regime, we spoke to Mia Liefso, owner of Bradford Skin Clinic and Med Spa and she gave us her top 21 Summer Skin Care tips.
- Wear a wide brim hat – On sunny days, many of us grab a baseball cap. However, that can’t protect your face when the sun comes at an angle. Instead, follow the style examples of the stars by opting for a wide-brim hat instead.
- Cooling mist – Keep a bottle of facial mist in your cooler when you go hiking, beach hopping, or whenever you’re enjoying the outdoors. When you’re out and about, and feel hot, or your skin feels dry, simply apply a few spritzes of nutrient and antioxidant-rich facial mist to your face and body. In addition to cooling you down, it will hydrate and soothe your skin.
- Take a cool shower – Some of us love a hot shower all year long, but hot showers can further dry out sun-exposed skin. But there’s another benefit. A cool shower can help prevent acne breakouts after excessive perspiration. So enjoy a cool shower after gym, hiking, gardening, or spending time outdoors. You can further boost the benefits of your shower by adding a weekly glycolic mask once a week. This will soothe irritated skin and prevent breakouts.
- Wage war on acne – During warmer months, the body is more prone to acne – not just the face. You could wash with an acne fighting body wash and wipe the skin with anti-blemish pads once a day.
- Soothe your lips this summer – The summer sun can dry your lips out in no time, which is why it’s important to keep them moisturized. Use rich lip balm with a minimum of SPF 15 and be sure to reapply when you go outside.
- Be easy on the eyes – The fragile skin around the eyes is especially sensitive to summer weather. Between June and August, use a specially formulated eye cream with antioxidants and human growth factors to prevent and possibly even reverse wrinkles.
- Protect your scalp – Although long hair offers a bit of sun protection, the sensitive skin along your part and hairline can still get easily burned. Try a mineral sunscreen mist instead of creams, which don’t absorb very well in that area.
- Soothe a sunburn – Apply an after-sun product with aloe or lactic acid to soothe painful, burned skin. Found in plain yogurt, lactic acid offers calming, soothing benefits. Use it as a mask by applying it for 30 minutes before you take a cool shower, and follow up with a soothing aloe vera gel application, three times a day.
- Powder your nose – It may be the excuse we use when we’re politely excusing ourselves to visit the loo, but it’s actually a helpful summer skin tip. You don’t need to reapply all your makeup every time you need to reapply sunscreen. Instead, simply touch up with a mineral makeup powder with SPF 50 or more brush-on sunscreen.
- Remember your hands – Keeping your hands thoroughly moisturized is key to avoiding wrinkles and pigmentation marks. Apply a hydrating hand cream with a broad spectrum of SPF 30 protection.
- Eat melons – Did you know that watermelon can help boost your skin’s SPF significantly? Also, cantaloupe will leave your skin radiant, due to its unique hydration properties and antioxidant load. Other foods that contain significant vitamin C and E (a combination that has been proven to limit sunburn risk, include tomatoes, berries, citrus fruits rich in vitamin C, and nuts that are rich in vitamin E are known as the perfect SPF-boosting meal).
- Apply strawberry – Improve your skin tone with something from your fridge – strawberries. Simply cut a large berry in half, poke at the flesh to awaken the juices, and massage it into your facial skin in small circles. Rinse off the juice after about two minutes and see how your age spots fade over time and how sunspots will brighten.
- Apply a lightweight sunscreen – It’s important to choose the right sunscreen. Many of them are oily and heavy, which can lead to shine and breakouts. Instead, opt for a lightweight SPF serum that will easily be absorbed into the skin
- Treat melasma – Do you have sun spots on your cheeks, forehead, or upper lip? This discoloration is common, especially in summer. However, you could use a dark spot corrector to get rid of it.
- Exfoliate – Slough away dry skin by applying a gentle exfoliator to dry skin before you shower. Be sure to pay special attention to the typically neglected areas, such as the elbows and knees. Follow this by applying a rich body oil or cream after towelling off. By doing this within three minutes, you seal in the body’s natural oils and enhance the effects of the oil or cream. You could even use the body brush attachment on your facial scrubber to tackle those rough areas. What product to use? You could purchase one suggestion by your skin clinic therapist, or make your own using finely ground coffee beans, sesame oil, eucalyptus essential oil and fine-grain sea salt.
- Get summer legs – The secret to great legs is to optimize the way in which light reflects off the skin’s surface. How do you do that? By exfoliating, moisturizing and adding a contouring shimmer lotion to hydrate, shape and glow.
- Add subtle shimmer – Instead of baking in the hot sun and damaging your skin, invest in a glow which includes a self-tanner. Use a tinted body lotion to make your skin look even smoother. It will add a subtle shimmer to your skin color.
- Avoid scratching bug bites – Can we all agree that bug bites are the worst thing about summer? The problem is that these bites can linger for several weeks after they before inflamed, and scratching can leave residual marks. Instead, apply a 1% hydrocortisone anti-itch cream until the itching resolves and use a restorative cream under your concealer as needed until the marks fade.
- Add some antioxidants – It’s easy to work antioxidants into your skin care routine during summer. You can use a serum to increase the potency of your SPF coverage, or you could apply iS Pro-Heal Serum Advance Plus to sun-burned skin.
- Bump-proof your personal grooming – There are several ways to soothe razor bumps, one of the best being laser hair removal. However, we can agree that nobody enjoys the burning and itching of ingrown hair and razor bumps. You can use an ingrown hair cream, which is packed with chamomile, salicylic acid and glycolic acid to exfoliate irritated skin.
- Most importantly, 99% of dermatologists feel that their patients apply too little sun protection.
The average person needs about one ounce of sunscreen to cover all exposed skin. That equals approximately a shot glass full of sunscreen. This is easy with TiZo.
TiZO is a tinted facial mineral sunscreen that offers superior sun protection in a silky, cosmetically elegant lotion, with a non-greasy matte finish. It contains the #1 and #2 rated sunscreen filters that help prevent premature skin aging, sun-induced wrinkles and loss of firmness. TiZO layers invisibly under makeup and refines the look of the skin and users love it.
Speak to your Bradford Skin Clinic and Med Spa therapist today to help you choose the perfect TiZO sunscreen for your skin’s unique needs.