The Best Products for the Perfect Summer Skincare Routine

During the cold winter months, we lather on thick moisturizer in an attempt to revive our dried skin barriers from the cranked heat and bitter weather. As the weather gets warmer, we finally shut off the heat and pump the AC, soak in the Sun's strong UV rays and splash around in salt water and chlorinated pools. We often forget that the change in weather causes a change in our bodies' needs. Sometimes, it can be overwhelming transitioning our skincare. Together, let's discuss the best products to help your skin (and hair) thrive over the summer!

  1. 1. Skincare Basics

    First, let's talk about skincare. It is important to wash your face twice a day to get rid of clogging oils and dirt that will cause impurities. My favorites are, the First Aid Beauty Pure Skin Cleanser, La Roche-Posay Toleriane Hydrating Gentle Facial Cleanser and last but not least, the Cerave Hydrating Facial Cleanser. These three face washes are gentle and non-irritating while still effectively cleansing your face. Next, Sun exposure may or may not dry out your skin, so after washing your face try applying a hyaluronic acid or niacinamide serum to give your face a little extra hydration, without feeling like you piled on oil. This is the best way to achieve that perfect and lightweight summer glow. Some ingredients, like retinol, can cause sensitivity to the Sun, so it is important to avoid such ingredients before stepping foot outside.

  2. 2. Sunscreen

    Of course, SPF should be worn all 365 days. However, as the UV rays strengthen, so should your SPF. Strong Sun exposure can cause skin cancer, premature wrinkles, irritating sunburn and discoloration. So to avoid these things, apply a light-weight  sunscreen every morning and reapply as needed throughout the day. Writer Summer Markham and I worked together to come up with the best suggestions. Our favorite sunscreens are the Cerave Hydrating Sunscreen, Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Face Mist, and the Neutrogena Clear Face & Oil-free SPF. To wrap up your summer skincare, we can not forget about lip protection. When you're ready to hit the pool or the beach, don't forget to add protectant to your lips too, my go-to product is Aquaphor SPF lip balm

  3. 3. Body Care

    You can't have a full skincare routine without talking about the rest of your body. For starters, aloe will be your best friend (I keep mine in the fridge so it stays cool). Adding aloe to sunburned areas will help revive your damaged skin and ease the irritation sunburn causes. Over the summer, my advice to keep your legs ``beach ready” is by exfoliating once a week. I lean towards a less abrasive exfoliator (like the Dove Body Polish), to rid my legs of dry and dull skin. Exfoliating before shaving also helps for a closer shave. Remember, do not exfoliate broken skin, wait for your sunburn to heal before using an exfoliator.

  4. 4. Moisturizer

    After showering, apply a moisturizer to keep your skin hydrated throughout the day. My favorite summer lotion is the Raw Sugar Watermelon and Fresh Mint scent. This lotion is lightweight and has the perfect summer aroma! Raw Sugar also donates a bar of soap to a family in need with each purchase of their product, so you help someone in need by purchasing any Raw Sugar product. Another great option for summer hydration is the Trader joe's Ultra hydrating Gel Moisturizer. This moisturizer is packed with quenching ingredients but in the form of a gel, so it is significantly less thick than a cream moisturizer. Lastly, before hitting the beach, make sure you add sunscreen to your body (yes, SPF belongs on your face AND body!) to avoid a pesky sunburn. My favorites are Hempz Yuzu and Starfruit Body Lotion; SPF 30 and Hawaiian Tropic AntiOxidant+ Sunscreen Lotion, Lightweight Sun Protection. These both provide protection throughout your whole body with a light tropical scent to finish. Neither of these products contain Oxybenzone, which is an ingredient often found in sunscreens that damages our coral reefs.

  5. 5. Haircare

    Lastly, we should discuss summer haircare. Chlorine, saltwater and Sun exposure can be very drying to your hair. Believe it or not, you can protect your hair from UV rays by using The Gotu Kola & Raspberry Seed Oil Pre-swim leave in by SheaMoisture. This product offers your hair protection from the sun, salt and chlorine while helping to maintain manageability post-swim. I try to use a hair mask at least once a week over the summer to help revive my dry strands. I use the  Raw Shea Butter Deep Treatment Mask. This also adds shine and manages frizz so I can feel confident in my natural hair (because avoiding heat is always a great idea). Last but possibly the most important, try to use shampoo and conditioners that have safe ingredients. Avoid using shampoos with sulfates and other drying ingredients. Some great brands to try out are SheaMouisture, Hask, and Renpure. These are my personal favorites that won't break my bank or my hair! After washing and conditioning your hair, use a leave in conditioner to control frizz and add extra hydration to your salty strands. I recommend  The Ouai Spray Leave in Conditioner.

As our Earth changes seasons, your skincare routine should change with it. Your body is your home, so making sure to take care of it during the hot summer months is extremely important. There are so many products out there that are good for your summer skin (and for our coral reefs) that are affordable and work wonders. Treat yourself to a little skincare shopping day and let your skin be the dewiest, healthiest and tannest it’s ever been!