Our skin changes throughout the year, thanks to a host of external factors such as hormonal changes, stress, and the weather.
Season to season, it’s normal to have a shift in your skincare regime – it’s likely that your skin’s needs will adapt depending on your environment.
Come summer, those with dry skin might find their dryness less aggressive and those with combination skin will lean one way more than the other, for example.
You also might find you’re breaking out more often.
So take it from Dr Emma Craythorne, a leading dermatologist, that your routine ‘should change with the seasons’, as she tells Metro.co.uk.
‘The sun causes lots of stimulation of the melanocytes and as a consequence there are often concerns of pigmentation in my clients,’ Emma explains.
‘Conditions such as melasma are always worse after the summer months because UVB stimulates acne formation.
‘Heat can also stimulate rosacea so often flare ups are worse after the summer months, as is solar lentigos (sun freckles) which are much more common towards the end of the summer.
So it’s about knowing your personal skin concerns, then making some alterations.
But where to start?
The obvious place is to first swap out heavier textures for lighter ones, as the warmer weather will make you more prone to sweating and will make skin feel buried under rich creams.
You might switch a cream moisturiser to a lotion or gel instead, or a milky serum to a watery one, or an oil cleanser to a foaming cleanser, Dr Craythorne suggests, depending on how oily or not your skin has become.
The most important thing however, is SPF.
Dr Craythorne says it must be ‘diligently applied, particularly if using skin active ingredients’, so that means using a liberal amount of product.
‘You need to reduce ongoing damage and allow damaged skin a chance to recover,’ she says.
If you find that you naturally do get more oily in the warmer months, introduce salicylic acid.
‘It can be very helpful in ensuring that follicles do not get blocked as easily with the oils we produce, and chemical antioxidants like silymarin have been shown to reduce oil oxidation,’ she says.
However, you need to exercise caution.
Acids will compromise the strength of the skin’s barrier as they slough off dead cells to reveal brighter new ones. The skin is then more vulnerable to burning and damage, which in the summer is increasingly possible anyway.
‘When it comes to the use of acids in the summer care does need to be taken,’ Dr Emma says.
‘In some cases when the stratum corneum is thinned it can make your skin a bit more sensitive to the sunshine.
‘Also if the acid you happen to be using is a bit irritating on the skin, then this can lead to a risk of hyperpigmentation.’
Pigmentation and dark spots
Dr Craythorne says there are a range of ingredients to combat this skin issue, both at a medical and cosmetic level depending on the severity of the issue.
Ingredients that are easy to get hold of in shop-bought products and that she recommends are:
- Licorice Extract
- Vitamin C
- Tranexamic acid
- Kojic acid
Medical grade products that you’d need prescribed might include hydroquinone, tretinoin and azelaic acid, and medical treatments include intense pulsed light and medium depth chemical peels.
But prevention is better than cure, so SPF is a must to maintain the results any of these products achieve.
If you’re making some product swaps, here are some worth trying.
Medik8 Daily Radiance Vitamin C
This moisturiser makes a good transitional product for those with dry skin, as it’s hydrating without feeling heavy.
It also includes Vitamin C and SPF – though there’s no harm in going in with a dedicated SPF after, too.
The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%
Niacinamide will help combat excess oil production.
This budget option is worth a go, to see if the non-irritating ingredient works for you.
Heliocare 360 Gel Oil-Free SPF50
Designed with oily and congested skin in mind, it leaves a mattifying effect on skin.
This brand is one of Dr Craythorne’s favourites for sun protection.
Paula’s Choice 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant
This highly raved about formula contains salicylic acid, one of Dr Craythorne’s ingredient suggestions.
Though targetted at oily skin, most dry skins won’t find this strips moisture either – rather, it keeps breakouts at bay.
SkinCeuticals Silymarin CF
It’s a hefty price tag, but beauty editors swear by SkinCeuticals products.
Silymarin is an antioxidant, a form of which should feature in your skincare routine.
Curél Foaming Facial Wash
If cream or oil cleansers aren’t cutting through the grime for you, try a foam, which can be a little more intensive on grease, oil and sweat.
Oskia Floral Water
If your skincare routine feels too heavily layered but you still need a moisture boost, opt for a lightweight hydrating toner which won’t add extra weight.
This one contains AHAs for light exfoliation too.
Coola Sunless Tan Serum
As well as offering a faux tan (the healthiest kind), this contains vitamin C to brighten skin and dark spots.
Credit: Original article published here.