Moisturizers, body creams, lotions or body oils are essentially in everyone’s skincare routine but while we work on our skin health and keep it hydrated for the whole day, a naturally glowing skin or a dull, pale face – both largely depends on what goes on and inside your skin. Skincare experts assert that there are a few ways and ingredients that we should consider turning towards, if we wish to have hydrated skin all day but they are not the same as winter wanes and the hot summer season approaches.
In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Sonali Kohli, Consultant, Dermatology at Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital along with Dr Yuti Nakhwa, Consultant Dermatologist and Cosmetologist at Global Hospital in Mumbai’s Parel and Dr Raashi Mehta -Consultant Dermatologist at Masina Hospital in Mumbai, revealed certain tips and tricks for skincare routine change from winter to summer.
Dr Sonali Kohli explained, “Skincare change with seasonal change is mandatory because as the weather changes, our humidity levels change. The moisture content in the air that we are breathing and the skin is breathing changes. Also the amount of sun exposure changes which could play a very important role in skin pigmentation, aging and other factors.”
She added, “So as the transition from the winter weather to summer weather happens there is a variation that will be needed in our skincare because the moisture content, the hydration levels are changing which affects the PH levels. The PH level is responsible for maintaining an intact skin barrier and is responsible for keeping your skin healthy, preventing any kinds of allergens penetrating into your skin and preventing further rashes or exacerbation of any skin conditions like eczema.”
Tips and tricks for skincare routine change from winter to summer:
1. Cleansers – Its time to change from hydrating creamy face washes to more exfoliating gel or foamy face washes. If you are have oily to combination skin, look for face washes containing AHA’s like glycolic acid or BHAs like salicylic acid which are great exfoliants and add a glow to your skin reducing dullness and tanning. From gentle and creamier cleansers in winters, one needs gel based or foam based cleansers to get rid of excess sebum and sweat accumulation on the face. Using exfoliating cleansers once or twice a week is also helpful.
To maintain good skin in summers, double cleanse. This includes washing your face with a form based or gel based cleanser as per your dermatologist’s recommendation since no one size fits all skins. Skincare should always be customized as per your skin type and skincare needs but in a generalized term, double cleansing would involve a face wash followed with a micellar water, which helps in removing all the grime which could be left behind that your face washing couldn’t take care of. Along with that, the micellar water should be rich in cucumber water and rose water as it will help tone your pores. Follow it by a light gel based moisturizer and serum.
2. Moisturizers – Change your moisturisers from heavy cream based ones to lighter lotions. Avoid facial oils and heavy serums and go in for lighter gel or serum based moisturisers containing hyaluronic acid, niacin amide and ceramides. During summers one can use light gel based moisturizers which won’t clog your pores more and are easily rinsed off.
When we transition from winter to summer, what becomes very important is we make sure that our moisturizer changes from heavy cream based to a gel based because during the summer, our skin perspires a lot more due to the weather and the temperature rise. Using a heavy cream based moisture in this weather causes a problem of pores which can lead to comedons which in normal language is referred to as black heads and white heads and is the first step for pimples or acne hence, it becomes very important that you use a non-acclusive or non-comedogenic light gel based moisturizer.
3. Serums – Various active ingredients can be delivered to your skin in the form of serums rather than creams. Serums are water based, easily absorbed and do not leave your face oily. You can always use a serum depending on your skincare requirements. If you’re looking for a serum that is targeting pigmentation then a serum rich in Vitamin C, glycolic acid or kojic acid. If you’re looking for something that is hydrating or anti aging a hyaluronic based serum is helpful. Post that you should layer it up with a good sunblock.
4. Sunscreens – Continue using a good SPF sunscreen. You can switchover to gel or silicone based or matte sunscreens if you have oily to combination skin to prevent clogging of pores and breakouts. You will have to be more frequent with applications outdoors as most of the sunscreen is washed oﬀ due to sweating. Cover your scalp with a wide brimmed hat protect your hair and prevent tanning. One doesn’t need moisturizing sunscreens in summers. One can opt for light matte finish non-comedogenic sunscreen with spf50.
Sunscreen is very important to use throughout the year, through all weathers but of course, in summers it becomes even more mandatory as the sun exposure time increases. So it is important that you use a sunscreen which has a SPF 50. Please be mindful that a SPF of 50 just helps you stay in the sun long without getting tan. It is not a measure of preventing permanent skin pigmentation skin disorders.
To prevent that you must look for a triple + sign or a circle sign on the top which are the European guidelines to show that they’re giving you PPD protection which is what we should be looking for to prevent any permanent pigment darkening of skin types.
5. Hydration – Hydrate yourself in the summers and eat more fruits and vegetables which are rich in antioxidants to prevent ﬂares of acne and photosensitive reactions. Maintaining a good hydration balance becomes important in summers hence, drinking water alone doesn’t help but you should include vegetables and fruits that are a rich source of water.
6. Incorporate an anti pigmentation molecule in your skin routine like niacinamide, arbutin or azelaic acid to prevent skin tanning and aggravation of pigmentary conditions like melasma.
7. Wash your scalp two to three times a week to maintain a clean, non scaly scalp. Avoid overnight oiling of hair if you are prone to acne and seborrheic dermatitis.
8. Its a good time to go in for dermatological procedures like exfoliating facials, chemical peels and mesotherapy to prevent any undue skin damage in the summers like photoaging, increased pigmentation and ﬂares in acne.
9. Avoid dark synthetic and woolly fabrics in your wardrobe and switchover to cottons and linens. This will reduce sweating and in turn skin problems like prickly heat and fungal infections like ringworm infection.
10. Face oils can be avoided during summers.
11. You use water based or gel based makeup, don’t choose a heavy foundation base as they can be very occlusive.
12. Toners – During summer, a toner is recommended because sometimes there could be a lot of grime which gets accumulated in your skin even after you wash your face. So, cleanse your skin with a micellar water or toner infused cucumber or rose which will cleanse your pores and keep your skin hydrated and replenish it.
13. Diet –Food and skincare is non-negotiable as they have a symbiotic result on your skin. So it’s very imp that we concentrate on our nutritional health along with concentrating on skincare because our skin is the biggest organ – it’s a mirror that reflects our internal health. If you’re not healthy from within, your skin can never reflect that radiance or that glow. It becomes very important to be eating an antioxidant diet especially in summer season.
A rich antioxidant diet plays a very important role because your internal sunscreen creating a diet which is rich in berries, rich in omega 3- flax seeds that work best as an anti-inflammatory as well as an anti-oxide. Eat a rainbow diet for example, eat as many colours, vegetables as possible because that is what will bring you the perfect balance to your diet. It will provide you with all the essential vitamins and minerals. It is important that you eat a diet which ensures that you’re getting an adequate intake of zinc, selenium, because these are essential minerals which are essential for good skin health.
Flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds are good sources of eating omega 3 naturally. Walnuts and raisins are an excellent source of omega 3 and work best as an antioxidant. Having said that,
14. A night regime that would typically involve double cleansing again, followed by a moisturizer and an active ingredient according to your skincare which is ideally recommended by a dermatologist. Retinol is a very good active ingredient but it doesn’t suit everyone as it’s something that is typically recommended to someone who is looking for anti-aging or might be suffering from acne. For pigmentation, an active ingredient like glycolic acid is good or any AHA which is Alpha Hydroxy Acids can work. For acne prone skin an active ingredient which involves a beta oxide like salicylic acid is recommended.