The Definitive Guide to Summer Skin Care
Get ready to slather your body in yogurt!
Why wouldn’t Shakespeare compare a love affair to a summer’s day? There’s a lot to love about the season: The longer days, the pretty dresses, the rooftop bars, heady music festivals, and beach days that leave us completely sun-kissed and glowing. However. That glowy skin is short-lived, and what comes after is serious sun damage. Add to that the possibility of breakouts from slathering on SPF (you really can’t win...), streaky faux tans, and the bane of our summer existence, sunburns, and you’re looking at a full-spectrum skin fiasco.
Sure, we can layer on the waterproof makeup, hide under a floppy-brimmed hat, or just push our cares to fall (when we typically deal with neglected summer woes), but taking preventative measures and treating our skin to some much-deserved TLC will actually allow us to be sun-drunk without the proverbial hangover. Over the years we’ve reached out to seasoned experts in hopes of mending our ways—models, entrepreneurs, doctors, and makeup artists shared with us their tried-and-true methods tailored just for the season we love.
“Cold, fat-free yogurt or skim milk [are] both soothing and protective, as [they are] rich in protein. Dip compresses into the milk or coat the area with yogurt for 15 to 20 minutes, and repeat every two to four hours. Green tea [also] has anti-inflammatory and pain-relief properties. Soak tea bags in cold water and apply them to the affected area.” —Dr. Neil Sadick, NYC-based dermatologist
“The first step of a summer skin-care routine has to be the double cleanse. People think that they can just use a foam cleanser and it will get everything off, but makeup is oil-based, and everything is so layered that one step of cleansing does not take everything off. We call it the one-one technique: one minute of face massage with the cleansing oil, and one minute of massage with the foam cleanser. That alone will really help with breakouts. Cleansing oil first—you emulsify it with water and rinse. Then a foam cleanser to finish it off. That dual punch will get rid of the grime, all the oil-based stuff, and you’ll be completely clean.” —Christine Chang, co-founder of Korean beauty company Glow Recipe
“As someone who specializes in skin finishing and tanning for TV, film, red carpet, and editorial, it’s essential to have the right product and the right tools [for the perfect fake tan]. I find that using a self-tan bronzing mousse is the easiest way to apply a great all-over color that’s even and natural-looking. The most important tool you need is an applicator mitt. It will protect your hands and allow you to evenly apply your mousse. Apply two to three pumps of product to your mitt, and start at your feet, then work your way up.” —Fiona Locke, Skin Finishing & Custom Tanning Expert, Fiona Locke Studio
“Gel moisturizers are the perfect solution for people who don’t like the tacky feel of general moisturizers, or for people with combination oily and normal skin. The texture [of gel moisturizers] is extremely lightweight and often has an evanescent cooling effect. They aren’t formulated with the oils and creams that many moisturizers contain. Instead, they might contain light humectants, such as hyaluronic acid.” —Dr. Ellen Marmur, dermatologist and dermatological surgeon, Marmur Medical
“I use a Japanese Tawashi scrub brush that’s good. I just started using a line called Living Libations—they have great dry brushes that they sell, and a breast massage oil with a breast brush, too. Your skin is your largest organ of the body, and dry-brushing regenerates it, brings blood to the surface, and cleanses your lymphatic system. Everyone’s skin is sensitive at different levels, so find the brush that works best for you. Dry-brush first, and then shower, cleanse, use your oils.” —Leiliani Bishop, model
“The best fixer-upper that I have found is Windex! I keep a container filled with Windex-soaked cotton balls in my makeup kit. Just swipe a little over a self-tanner stain within two hours of application, and it’ll remove the stain completely!” —Katie Quinn, body makeup artist for Victoria’s Secret Angels
“Patches of skin which become darker in color due to deposits of excess melanin can be seen in three variations [including] lentigines, which are discrete spots caused by sun damage…. [Treat them with] over-the-counter products with low-concentration hydroquinones, kojic acid, alpha hydroxy acid, ascorbic acid, retinol, licorice extract, and many botanicals including arbutin, mulberry, flavonoids, soy proteins, and polyphenols…. In-office procedures include intense pulse light therapy, Q switched ruby laser, Dual Fraxel laser, microdermabrasion, Dermasweep, and glycolic acid peels.” —Dr. Patricia Wexler, NYC-based dermatologist