The Best Summer Skincare Procedures To Try
Think you have to put off your skincare procedures until fall now that summer is almost here? Think again.
In fact, going 3 to 4 months without tending to your skin, could end up setting you back more than you would like come fall.
Depending on your lifestyle and the events you will be attending this spring and summer (e.g. graduations, weddings, etc.), and those tropical vacations and poolside BBQs, you might want to leave those more aggressive treatments for another season.
In the meantime, there are effective skincare treatments and procedures you can schedule during the summer to maintain the results you have already achieved to keep your skincare goals on track.
Skincare Essential: Sunscreen Protection
With the days getting longer and the weather getting warmer, we are all spending more time out in the daylight hours. So you need to be honest with yourself, what is your philosophy on wearing sun protection?
In other words, when do you feel it is important to apply sunscreen, and perhaps more importantly, how often are you actually applying your sunscreen?
We’ll clue you into a little secret, these are the ONLY times you do NOT need sunscreen:
- The sun has completely set
- At night while you are sleeping
- If you live in a cave and never, ever come out
Sunscreen Do’s and Don’t’s
Here is what you should be doing to make sure you are protecting yourself from the sun’s harmful rays, especially between the hours of 11 AM - 2 PM, when the sun is at its peak.
- Chose a mineral sunscreen that contains zinc and titanium.
- The American Academy of Dermatology recommends at least an SPF level of 30 or higher (SPF is protection against UVB rays ONLY).
- Choose a sunscreen that is labeled “Broad Spectrum” (this indicates the product has been tested and passed for UVA protection).
- Water resistance of at least 40 minutes.
- When using mineral sunscreens and you are swimming, sweating, or constantly touching or rubbing your face; you should reapply every 90 minutes. And guess what, putting your cell phone up to your face is also removing your mineral sunscreen!
- If it is daylight, you should wear sunscreen regardless if it is cloudy, raining, snowing, or sleeting. A general rule of thumb: if you can see light, light can see you.
What NOT to do when it comes to sun protection:
- Don’t rely on sunscreen that is in your “make-up” or your “moisturizer.” Why? It is usually only an SPF 15 and because it usually a has chemical sun filter (not titanium and zinc). Important Note: Manufacturers will often say the sunscreen is “mineral” and there might be a chemical sun filter included in the formulation, in addition to titanium or zinc.
- Forgetting to reapply your sunscreen every 90 minutes, if you are outdoors swimming and sweating.
- If you are using a sunscreen with chemical filters, it is essential to apply chemical sunscreens at least 30 minutes before sun exposure. If you don’t, you are simply not protected.
- Chemical sun filters (all of those words on the label you can’t pronounce) degrade when exposed to UV radiation (the sun).
- Chemical sunscreens don’t work simply because you sweat or wipe them off like zinc and titanium. The chemicals actually stop working due to breaking down in the presence of sunlight.
- Buy a sunscreen only because it’s “cheap”.
- Use a sunscreen that has expired. If you’re unsure, throw it out.
Now that we’ve drilled the importance of sun protection into you, let’s get to those procedures you can do during these warmer months to keep your skin in tip-top shape and glowing!
But one quick point before we move on, if you are not committed to wearing your sun protection, it’s best to skip procedures altogether frankly. Not wearing sun protection, can do more harm to your skin.
So remember, the only “good” sunscreen is the one you are going to wear. Buy a sunscreen you will actually wear every, single day.
Summer Skincare Procedures To Try
Before undergoing any skincare procedure, you should always make an appointment to discuss the following with your skincare expert:
- Your skincare goals.
- Ask about the expected downtime you’re likely to experience post-procedure.
- Discuss your medications or medical concerns that may affect your skin during and after the procedure. This includes anything that may cause additional sun sensitivity (e.g. antibiotics or medications for other skin issues including acne, eczema, psoriasis, etc.)
Once you are on the same page with your skincare expert on the above, ask about some of these summer-friendly skincare procedures:
- Superficial chemical peels: one important thing you should know about chemical peels, you don’t actually have to peel! In fact, chemical peels come in many formulations and strengths, so be sure to express your goals and expectations to your skincare expert. You might ask about Lactic Acid peels as they are considered hydrating and can leave you glowing and hydrated.
- Wet microdermabrasion procedures: these “facials” are like a two in one; they superficially resurface the top layer of your skin then infuse “specialty” serums or “boosters” based on the recommendation of your skincare expert and can have great benefits for improved skin texture.
- Dermabrasion or dermaplaning: both of these procedures are considered a superficial resurfacing of the skin to remove the dead top layer and will leave your skin glowing. Plus, these skin treatments will enable your skincare products to penetrate better. Additionally, Dermaplaning removes the vellus hair (peach fuzz) from your face.
- Microneedling: the invasiveness of this procedure depends on your preference and involves creating tiny holes on the surface of your skin; here's our complete guide to microneedling. You should note that it is normal for some bleeding to occur during the procedure and later, after the first 24 hours, you may have some swelling and redness, but shortly after, no one will know you had anything done.
- IPL (Intense Pulsed Light): is a procedure which emits light though it is not a true laser for the purpose of treating hyperpigmentation and/or vascularity (redness), while some also notice skin tightening as an added benefit. Slight redness and swelling post-procedure is common, as is it normal for pigmentation to become darker and “slough off” a few days after the procedure. More than one session is generally recommended depending on the severity of your skin’s condition.
Bottom line, there is no reason to put off scheduling your skincare procedures, no matter what time of the year, but particularly during spring and summer.
Keeping and maintaining the health of your skin is important every day of the year.
Consult with your skincare expert on what will fit in best with your lifestyle; no one knows you better than you!
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Karen Ragaini is the National Education and Training Manager for ALASTIN Skincare. She is also a registered nurse, holds an additional bachelor’s degree in Gerontology and is a licensed esthetician.