Advice Column, beauty, Lifestyle, Recently

Summer skincare de-coded

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  • Category Advice Column, beauty, Lifestyle, Recently

A solid skincare routine will work for you all year round, but keeping your skin healthy during summer may require some small changes. Warmer weather means different skincare challenges, like avoiding sunburn, managing excess sebum and keeping sun spots at bay. But what should you be doing and which products do you really need?

Here are the answers to some of the most commonly-asked summer skincare questions. 

Does my skincare routine need to change in summer?

Not necessarily. If you have a skincare regime that works for you, stick to it. Some people prefer switching out heavier moisturisers for lighter lotions, or rich milky cleansers for foaming gel cleansers, but this is entirely up to you. Try a refreshing facial cleanser like Creightons Pink Grapefruit Face Wash (R69.95) which effectively removes dirt and impurities while invigorating the skin. You might also want to introduce some vitamin C skincare products to your regime, as they help brighten the complexion (sloughing away post-winter dullness) and protect against (and treat) sun-induced pigmentation. Try NIP+FAB Vitamin C Serum Fix (R295.00) which uses a powerhouse of antioxidants to leave skin brightened, refreshed and protected against environmental aggressors. Creightons Vitamin C Superfruits Skin Radiance Moisturiser (R89.95) works to enhance skin’s natural radiance, promoting a brighter, healthier-looking complexion. 

While it’s important to wear a broad spectrum SPF all year, it’s absolutely essential that you include one in your skincare and body care regimes during summer. Not only will you likely spend more time outdoors, but your body will also be more exposed in summer clothing, increasing your risk of sunburn and skin damage. Piz Buin Allergy Face Cream SPF50 (R190.00) offers very high protection and contains a unique anti-irritant shield complex proven to help strengthen the skin’s resilience to the sun. 

What does SPF number stand for and how many times a day should you reapply SPF?

What Does the SPF Number Mean? The SPF number tells you how long the sun’s UV radiation would take to redden your skin when using the product exactly as directed versus the amount of time without any sunscreen. 

So ideally, with SPF 30 it would take you 30 times longer to burn than if you weren’t wearing sunscreen. We’d recommend rather being too cautious than too carefree. If you’re bad at reapplying SPF, opt for a higher SPF to protect you for longer. We love Piz Buin Ultra Light Hydrating Sun Spray SPF30 (R279.95) which has a light and non-sticky formula that is easily absorbed.

Is it ever okay to sun tan without SPF?

No, this is never ok, not ever. Even the slightest darkening of the skin indicates damage. When you tan, your body produces melanin, the pigment responsible for the colour of your skin. When your skin is exposed to the sun’s UV rays, it triggers the production of melanin in an attempt to protect the skin. This results in the darkening of the skin, and serves as evidence of UV damage. Over time, sun tanning may lead to premature ageing of the skin and even skin cancer. Rather opt for a self-tan product that gives your skin a sun-kissed glow without any harm. 

Australian Gold Instant Sunless Lotion (R380.00) helps your skin develop a rich, sun-kissed bronze colour in no time. It offers the perfect balance of caring and bronzing ingredients for summer-ready skin that’s healthy and nourished. If you want SPF protection while giving your skin a bronze shimmer, try Australian Gold SPF Lotion with Instant Bronzer (R280.00). It’s formulated with kona coffee-infused bronzers to leave your skin with an immediate sun-kissed glow while protecting it from the sun’s harmful UVA and UVB rays. For a soft and natural glow, try St Moriz Golden Glow Moisturiser (R150.00), which allows you to gradually build your glow by means of daily application. 

Is it okay to self-tan your face?

Yes, provided you use a self-tan product that is suitable for facial skin. Using self-tan on your face is a much better option than sun tanning, as it won’t put you at risk of sun burn or premature ageing. We recommend St Moriz Fast Tan Mousse (R150.00), because it allows you to control your shade. It can be washed off after an hour for a natural glow, after two hours for a medium tan and after three hours for a deeper tan. If it’s your first time using it, leave it on for an hour – you can always go darker next time round, and you won’t run the risk of going too dark the first time. Apply it using the St Moriz Tan Applicator Mitt (R99.99) to ensure your hands don’t get stained.  

Can I wash my face more than twice a day in hot weather?

Washing your face more than twice a day is not recommended, even in hot weather. Each time you cleanse, you remove some of the natural oils produced by your skin and cleansing too often can result in the skin being stripped of oil, leaving it dehydrated and irritable. Instead of cleansing, try spritzing your skin with some chilled water (you can keep a spritz bottle in the fridge and use it whenever necessary!). 

Do I have to apply moisturiser twice a day even though my skin feels oilier?

Here’s a little science lesson that might save your skin this summer: Oils moisturise, while water hydrates. Dry skin needs more oil, while dehydrated skin needs more water. If your skin does not get enough hydration, it will produce more sebum in an attempt to boost your moisture levels. The result? Oily skin with blackheads and breakouts due to an overproduction of oil. To avoid this, it’s essential to moisturise your skin twice a day, even if it feels like you don’t need it. If richer creams don’t work for you, apply a lightweight hydrating lotion instead.

Try Creightons H2O Boost Hyaluronic Day Gel (R169.95), a refreshing light lotion that contains hyaluronic acid for intense hydration, and Creightons H2O Boost Overnight Mask (R169.95), a nourishing cream with hyaluronic acid which works overnight to improve the skin’s elasticity and intensely hydrate. 

My skin gets oilier during summer, how can I prevent blackheads and breakouts?

Spots don’t have to be inevitable in summer. To prevent them, ensure that your skin stays hydrated by using a good quality moisturiser twice a day. You may want to introduce a spot-busting active ingredient to your routine. We recommend salicylic acid. Not only does it help unclog pores, but it also reduces swelling and redness and helps loosen dry or dead skin cells so that it can flake off quicker (a build-up of dead skin cells can lead to blemishes). The NIP+FAB Salicylic Fix range offers hardworking, spot-busting products that are gentle on the skin. Try this trio for blemish-free skin:

NIP+FAB Salicylic Fix Gel Cleanser (R219.95) gently cleanses and purifies the skin using salicylic acid to lift away dirt, impurities and excess oil. Follow with NIP+FAB Salicylic Fix Moisturiser (R219.95), which has a lightweight formula designed to normalise and balance the production of sebum while reducing the appearance of enlarged pores.

 Stop breakouts in their tracks with a nightly application of NIP+FAB Salicylic Acid Fix Night Pads (R349.95). It is formulated to reduce breakouts with potent salicylic acid and a skin protective complex to support the healing process of active breakouts, to speed up recovery time.

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