There’s a glow your skin gets in the summer. Warmer, more humid weather allows us to skip the many layers of clothing cold weather requires. We’re participating in more outdoor activities that can get our skin all dewy and flushed.
However counterintuitive it may seem, your skin needs more protection in the summer. The sun’s rays, plants, bugs and more can put our skin at risk for rash, sunburn and infection.
Face and neck
Apply broad-spectrum sunscreen to your face and neck every day, even if you don’t think you will be outside. Prevent razor burn by keeping facial skin clean and hydrated before and after shaving.1 Use moisturizing shave cream or butter and a soothing aftershave product. Check with your dermatologist about your skin care routine and medications. They may make your skin irritated or extra-sensitive to the sun.
Head, neck and shoulders
Protect these areas from the sun by wearing broad-spectrum sunscreen on exposed skin. Put on hats, sunglasses, sun buffs and sun shirts when spending extra time outdoors.
Arms and hands
Wear long sleeves and gloves when gardening or working outside. You can prevent cuts, insect bites, sunburn and other irritants such as poison ivy, poison oak or sumac. Don’t forget the insect repellant! Check the label and be sure it contains 20%-30% DEET.2 Always use as directed.
Chest and back
Showering after working or playing outside and post-workouts removes sweat, dirt and oil and prevents clogged pores and acne breakouts. Apply broad-spectrum sunscreen to your chest, neck and back, which can often be forgotten.
Torso and lower abdomen
Be extra careful about sun exposure here. Use a higher SPF (at least 30) on pale skin that doesn’t normally see much sun. Consider a one-piece swimsuit or swim shirt for added protection. Change out of wet bathing suits, shower, shampoo your hair and apply moisturizer as soon as possible after swimming.3
Wear insect repellant and long pants and socks to help keep bugs at bay. While working in the garden or on the house or car, use pads or a cushion to protect your knees.
Feet and toes
Wear well-fitting, closed-toed shoes4 while working in the yard, on walks or on hikes. Wearing water shoes while swimming can help prevent cuts and bruising. Keep your feet clean, dry and moisturized. Don’t pick at or cut off corns, calluses or blisters.
With these few skin-minding actions, you can wear your glow all year long.
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Published June 21, 2016
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