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Top 3 Tips for Summer Skincare Routine


During the summer, our skin is challenged bygreater sun exposure and heat which increase oxidative stress and sweating, respectively. Increased sun exposure commonly leads to freckling, photoaging, and without protection, sunburn [1]. The increased pore activity associated with sweating also means more sebum and dead skin cells are being turned over at the skin surface [2]. Below, we outline some small skin care routine modifications that can be made to account for summertime sun exposure and help prevent sunburn, aggravated acne, and hyperpigmentation.   


During the summer especially,it’scritical that we don’t skip or forgetsunscreen as the UV index is higherand we’re more likely to be participating in outdoor activities. If you’re someone who sometimes forgets to add SPF to your routine, try switching to alight moisturizer combined with sunscreen so there’s one less step to remember. We’ve previously discussed the differences between chemical vs. physical sunscreens and understand that they each have their own pros and cons [3]. If mineral sunscreen is too heavy for your skin, using a clean formulation that employs chemical sunscreen actives (i.e.avobenzone, octinoxate, and oxybenzone) for your face may be a good choice. However,sticking to cleanly formulated,mineral sunscreens (i.e.containing zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide) whenever possible isstillbest. This will help avoid the chemical actives and potentially toxic formulation components from getting into your bloodstream where the consequences of these dermatological actives are less well understood [4].


After a hot, sweaty day in the sun, sunscreen, make-up, sweat, dead skin, and sebum may all be residing at the skin surface.Cleansing the skin at night or soon after sun exposure using thedouble cleansing method (oil followed by gentle foaming cleanser) will help thoroughlyremove sunscreen,makeup, anddead skin before bed [5]. Nighttime is the skin’s biggest opportunity to repair as subcutaneous blood flow increases, we’re not touching our skin, and there’s less environmental stress overall [6].To help boostafter-sun recovery, applying a serum with antioxidants likeniacinamide,vitamin C,vitamin E, orresveratrol after cleansing can support the calming and repairing process. Follow it up with your favorite moisturizer and get some quality sleep while your skin appreciates the care!


Lastly, we suggest using alighter skin care andmakeup routine overall. Tinted moisturizers with SPF are ideal for this time of year while staying away from heavier makeup items. Additionally, chemical exfoliants likeretinol (orbakuchiol as a plant-based alternative) andalpha hydroxy acids can helpremove dead skin cells and sebum which are being produced at a higher rate [7]. Prioritizing water-based moisturizers, SPF, and antioxidant after-care will help your skin stay hydrated, clear, and protected all summer long. 


[1] Rittié L, Fisher GJ (2015) Natural and Sun-Induced Aging of Human Skin.Cold Spring Harb Perspect Med 5, a015370.

[2] Baker LB (2019) Physiology of sweat gland function: The roles of sweating and sweat composition in human health.Temperature (Austin) 6, 211–259.

[3] Serpone N (2021) Sunscreens and their usefulness: have we made any progress in the last two decades?Photochem Photobiol Sci 20, 189–244.

[4] Siller A, Blaszak SC, Lazar M, Olasz Harken E (2019) Update About the Effects of the Sunscreen Ingredients Oxybenzone and Octinoxate on Humans and the Environment.Plast Surg Nurs 39, 157–160.

[5] Chen W, He M, Xie L, Li L (2020) The optimal cleansing method for the removal of sunscreen:Water, cleanser or cleansing oil?J Cosmet Dermatol 19, 180–184.

[6] Kim MA, Kim EJ, Kang BY, Lee HK (2017) The Effects of Sleep Deprivation on the Biophysical Properties of Facial Skin.Journal of Cosmetics, Dermatological Sciences and Applications 7, 34–47.

[7] Kim S, Park JW, Yeon Y, Han JY, Kim E (2019) Influence of exposure to summer environments on skin properties.J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol 33, 2192–2196.