5 Summer Beauty Woes (& How to Fix Them)

Ah, summer! We wait all year long for the weather to get warmer, the days to get longer and the stress of finals to become nothing but a distant memory. But when it comes to beauty, this time of the year doesn’t always turn us into the sun-kissed beach babes we think it will. Thankfully, HC has the solution for five of the most common beauty woes that collegiettes experience during the summer.

The problem: Your makeup melts off


When the temperature rises and things start to get sweaty, makeup can stream right off your face—not exactly the best look. “When the weather gets warmer, my eyeliner starts to melt everywhere,” says Lillian Noble, a junior at American University. “Even liquid eyeliner seems to melt onto my eyes.”

The solution:

If your makeup starts going places it's not supposed to be, you’ll need to be prepared to do some damage control. “In the summer months, I usually carry around Q-Tips to touch up under my eyes and wipe off the eyeliner,” Lillian says.

But ideally, your makeup won’t come off at all. “Wear waterproof makeup, because foundation will slip and mascara will run,” says Kimberley Bosso, a celebrity makeup artist and founder of Bosso makeup. “Stay away from powder. It’s best to stick with cream and minimal makeup is better.” Bosso recommends using cream eyeshadows, like the ones from Revlon ($5.19), a cream foundation like MAC’s Face and Body ($27), a waterproof concealer like the one from her line ($28) and brow pencils instead of powder. “In the summer, less is more,” she adds.

The problem: Your skin burns easily


You already know that too much sun exposure can have serious long-term consequences for everyone, but some collegiettes are more prone to the short-term ones than others. “I have very fair skin and always have to worry about getting a sunburn,” says Elizabeth Huebsch, a junior at Davidson College. “I used to be more careless and shrug off burns because they fade into tans. But recently having seen friends and family go through skin cancer scares, I know that being reckless about sun exposure is a no-go.” And remember, just because you don’t burn so easily doesn’t mean that you don’t need to wear sunscreen!

The solution:

Elizabeth has found a way to reduce the risk of sunburn. “Now, I'm careful to use products with SPF even if I'm not planning on laying out,” she says. “I use moisturizer and foundation with SPF so that I don't even have to think about slathering on sunscreen. My favorite product line is COOLA. They have amazing, natural products that smell great and are awesome for your skin.”

What do the experts say? Henry Von Norden, a paramedical aesthetician and makeup artist at Hollywood Beauty Bar, recommends you stay no more than 15 or 20 minutes in full sun, regardless of skin type. His favorite sunscreen is VI DERM SPF 50+ Sun Protection ($30).

Wearing makeup with SPF like Elizabeth does is also a great idea. A BB cream like the one from Maybelline ($9) works well because it triples as foundation, moisturizer and sunscreen. Don’t forget to also wear sun block even if you’re planning on tanning.

That being said, if you do end up getting a sunburn, aloe vera is the way to go. “The sprays have a lot of alcohol with them,” Von Norden says. “The best way to treat sunburns is with over the counter aloe vera. It’s better to use a gel rather than a spray.” You can find these gels at any pharmacy.

The problem: Sunscreen makes you break out


So to counteract the harmful effects of UV rays, you wear sunscreen. But unfortunately, it turns out that sunscreen can also be bad for your skin. Ugh, can we ever catch a break? “One issue I experience in the summer time is sunscreen clogging my pores, and not just on my face,” says Haley Cahill, a senior at Appalachian State University. “It's so frustrating when my chest, shoulders and back start to break out, but I can't pass on the sunscreen. This is the worst when you try to rock strapless tops or dresses, but you're self-conscious about how your skin looks!”

The solution:

Although we’re all on a budget, sunscreen is not something we should be scrimping on. “The problem lies within the base of the product,” Von Norden explains. “Less expensive products have base ingredients that cause breakouts. The cheaper the brand, the more wax. That’s why we pay more.”

You should also be using a different product on your face than you use on your body. For your face, “you should aim for something that you would find at a salon,” Von Norden says. “VI DERM SPF 50+ Sun Protection is specific for your face. It’s very refined, light and dry. The body ones can be thicker and heavier.” Overall, you should be looking for products that are “non-comedegenic, paraben-free and mineral oil free.” We love Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturizer ($21) and Super Fluid UV Defense for body ($38).

The problem: You have to shave all the time

In the winter, jeans and tights can make shaving irrelevant. But when the sun comes out, so do bare legs, and suddenly you find yourself shaving almost every day. Not to mention that hair seems to grow faster in the summer months!

And sure, shaving all the time is annoying, but it also has other unpleasant consequences. “I hate dealing with ingrown hairs, razor burn, and that constant worry of, 'are my legs hairy?'” says Kristen Kraemer, a graduate from Rutgers University.

The solution:

There is no way around it: “Waxing is a much better way to go,” Von Norden says. “It’s once every three to four weeks and in the long run you’re slowing hair growth. Shaving makes the root stronger.” Obviously, this method also eliminates razor burn. As for ingrown hairs, “you should use some kind of a loofah or body scrub with a bead every time you shave or wax.”

But if you really have to shave, “I don’t recommend using Nair or anything like that,” Von Norden says. “It can actually dissolve hair so you can imagine what it’s doing to your skin. If you’re going to shave, shave and use an aftershave cream. I would recommend Aveeno body cream or any of those calming products.”

The problem: Your hair gets all frizzy


Heat and humidity are great and all, but they’re not exactly the best when it comes to our hair. “I always get attacked with frizzy hair each summer, especially when it's humid,” says Malone Ryan, a sophomore at John Carroll University. “I have natural pretty curly hair, so combine that with the summertime heat and I've got a complete mess.”

The solution:

The easiest way to deal with frizz is to simply tie your hair up, but you might also want to consider investing in an anti-frizz product, especially for days when you just want to leave the locks down. “Apart from throwing [my hair] up in a ponytail (and simply dealing with the fly-aways!), I've learned to use products like John Frieda Frizz Ease to get it somewhat manageable,” Malone says. “Plus it saves me from chopping off all my hair in frustration each summer!”

There are plenty of great products out there, like Moroccanoil’s Frizz Control ($36) or Redken’s Frizz Dismiss line.


To every summer beauty problem, there’s an easy solution—so you can enjoy your summer to the fullest.

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About The Author

Iris is the associate editor at Her Campus. She graduated from UCLA with a degree in communications and gender studies, but was born and raised in France with an English mother. She enjoys country music, the color pink and pretending she has her life together. Iris was the style editor and LGBTQ+ editor for HC as an undergrad, and has interned for Cosmopolitan.com and goop. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @irisgoldsztajn, or check out her writing portfolio here.