It may be mostly warm and bright all year long here in southeastern Florida, but when June arrives and “turns the volume up” on the temperature, humidity, and sunshine, you know the summer season has returned.
Whether you like to sit by the pool, hit the beach, or head to the golf course this time of year, you want your skin to look vibrant and stay healthy all season long. For most people, it takes being mindful of the sun and adjusting their daily skin care routine.
If you only adopt one healthy skin habit for the summer, we want it to be this: wear sunscreen. We recommend you wear sunscreen year-round, especially in the summertime, when the northern hemisphere is closer to the sun — and its harmful ultraviolet (UV) light rays.
Before you head outdoors, we recommend applying a broad-spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with an SPFof 30 or higher to all areas of exposed skin, including your ears, neck, the tops of your feet, and the backs of your hands. It’s best to use a lightweight, dual-purpose moisturizer that contains sunscreen for your face.
And don’t forget: Sunscreen breaks down over time and in the water. Be sure to reapply every two hours after swimming or excessive sweating.
While we want you to get your vitamin D, we also want you to cultivate a “shade worshiper” mindset — or be the opposite of an old-school “sun worshiper,” which means seeking shade (and carrying some with you) when you’re planning to be outdoors.
Even with consistent sunscreen habits, it’s best to stay in the shade (under a tree, beach umbrella, or covered porch) during the midday hours — between 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM — when the sun is at its highest, and its rays are strong and more direct.
We also recommend carrying your source of shade by wearing a wide-brimmed hat and protective clothing, especially when you plan to be outdoors where shade isn’t available. Opt for lightweight pants, long-sleeved shirts, and long maxi-style dresses made of breathable, tightly woven fabric like linen or material labeled with a UV rating.
It’s a popular misconception that everyone should use creamier skin cleansers and heavier moisturizers in the drier cold-weather months and switch to milder, foamier cleansers and lightweight moisturizers in the humid summertime.
Instead of making this switch, we advise you to take a more adaptive approach to your skin care needs based on how your skin responds to seasonal change. Switching to a foamy cleanser and lightweight moisturizer can be helpful if your skin feels oilier in the summer; however, your usual skin care products may be alright if your skin doesn’t change much.
After you reassess your cleanser and moisturizer, consider your daily makeup application — with high humidity and sweating, we recommend a lighter, less-is-best approach for anyone who wears multiple skin care products.
In the winter, you shouldn’t over-exfoliate your skin. But in the summertime, we recommend gentle skin exfoliation once or twice a week. Why? Sunscreen and sweat can trap dead skin cells and block your pores, leaving your skin stressed and prone to blemishes.
We can help you find a product that works well for your skin, whether it’s a gentle cleanser with a mechanical exfoliant (i.e., sugar scrub, loofah sponge, washcloth) in the shower once or twice weekly or a soothing skin pad containing a gentle chemical exfoliant, like alpha and beta hydroxy acids.
Mild chemical exfoliants work best for dry, sensitive, or acne-prone skin, while gentle mechanical exfoliants work well for oilier, thicker skin. Never exfoliate sunburned skin.
The outdoor air may be hot and humid, but spending time in the sun, pool, or air-conditioned spaces can leave your skin feeling dry and irritated. To avoid drying out your skin even further, it’s helpful to:
If you’re an avid swimmer, we recommend scheduling your daily shower right after pool time. If you sweat a lot during the day, switch your regular shower time from the morning to the evening.
For more advice on practicing healthy skin habits, call your nearest Florida Dermatology Associates office in Palm Bay, Cocoa Beach, Cocoa, Melbourne, or Titusville, Florida, today, or use our online booking feature to schedule a visit.