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Your Best Summer Skin

Head-to-toe tips for the warmer months?


Flaunt glowing, healthy skin this summer. Cleanse, exfoliate, moisturize, and protect your skin so you can put your best face forward.

Summer is a time to flaunt glowing, healthy skin. Hemlines are shorter, blouses are sleeveless, and bare feet make their appearance. How do you put your best and most gorgeous face and sandalled foot forward this summer? Use these tips to beautify and protect your radiant skin during the warmer months.

Protect it

The sun is out in full force during the summer, and protecting your skin from its rays is of utmost importance. Sunburns are very painful and can increase your risk of developing skin cancer (even one bad sunburn can put you at a higher risk) as well as cause your skin to age quickly.

A simple way to protect your skin in the summer is to avoid being outside for extended periods between 10 am and 4 pm, when the sun is at its highest, and to cover it up as much as you can. Wear a wide-brimmed hat, large sunglasses with UV protection, and loose-fitting, tightly woven clothes made from natural fibres.

Of course, there are times when covering up is not possible. To prevent burning during these occasions, slather on at least a shot glass full of sunscreen 30 minutes before going outside. Sunscreen absorbs UV rays but has ingredients to protect against them. And don’t forget to reapply sunscreen every 90 minutes to maintain its effectiveness.

Use an SPF of at least 15 (the higher the SPF number, the longer the sunscreen protects against the sun’s harmful rays) and look for sunscreens that are labelled “broad spectrum” to protect your skin against a larger range of UV radiation. Ensure your sunscreen does not contain undesirable ingredients such as parabens, synthetic fragrance, and dyes that can irritate and damage the skin. The Environmental Working Group recommends mineral sunscreens such as zinc and titanium, as many chemical sunscreens contain potential hormone disruptors.

Exfoliate it

Exfoliating your skin is very important in the summer. Skin cells are shed at a very quick rate every day, so if you do not get rid of dead cells sitting on top of your skin they can cause it to look dull and dry. Exfoliating one to three times a week (those with sensitive skin may want to start out slowly) will help your summer skin maintain its beautiful radiance and glow!

Choose a gentle exfoliant with natural ingredients such as oatmeal or sugar. Steer clear of alpha hydroxy acid, which can be harsh on the skin and may increase sensitivity to the sun. A scrub made from fruits and berries such as strawberries or pomegranate contains natural fruit acids that help to combat blemishes.

In the shower rub the exfoliant in circular movements on your body from the shoulders down and rinse. When exfoliating your face, make sure to use an exfoliant that has gentle ingredients specifically for the face.

And don’t forget your feet. Slough off dead skin on your feet with a non-metal foot file every time you shower for perfectly soft flip flop-ready skin.

Moisturize and hydrate it

Excessive heat can dehydrate the skin, so it’s important to keep it moisturized during the summer, even if your skin feels oily (more sebum is a sign that your skin
could be dehydrated).

The most important way to keep skin healthy and glowing in the summer months is to drink appropriate amounts of water—at least eight 250 mL glasses every day. Water helps the kidneys flush waste products out of your system and may benefit your skin’s health and appearance.

It’s tempting to skip moisturizer in the summer because of excess oils on the skin, but why not switch to something lighter? Use a lotion instead of a creme—it contains more water and less oil. If you wish to continue using an oil-based moisturizer, simply use less of it or apply it on damp skin. Try moisturizers made with kukui nut oil (an extremely lightweight oil) or camellia oil (from the green tea plant). Both are good for all skin types and are very rich in antioxidants.

Make sure to moisturize your feet too. Since your feet are likely sockless in the summer, they can get dry very quickly and require a heavier, creamier moisturizer. But to prevent athlete’s
foot, keep the area between toes dry and avoid moisturizing there.

By protecting your skin every day, exfoliating it a few times a week, and making sure to keep it moisturized, you’ll be glowing all summer long. Take care of your skin and you’ll be putting your best foot (and face, arms, and legs!) forward this summer and for many summers to come.



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Matthew Kadey, MSc, RDMatthew Kadey, MSc, RD