Let’s face it: Australia’s long, warm summer days are impossible to resist. Nothing beats an afternoon lazing at the beach or socialising with mates at a backyard barbecue.
But your skin tends to be at its most vulnerable during the summer months because you spend so much of your time outdoors, where you’re at risk of UV damage from the powerful Australian sun. Your skin can be easily damaged if you don’t take care of it, especially if you have a sensitive skin type that is prone to sunburn, dryness or allergies.
So how can you keep your skin healthy and hydrated all summer long? Just follow these simple skincare tips.
1. Shower with a hydrating body wash
A lot of things can dry out sensitive skin during summer, from the baking hot sun to your air-conditioner or chlorine from the pool. That’s why it’s vital that you shower with a body wash that gently hydrates your skin. We recommend our Aloe Soothe Wash because it’s free of parabens and sulphates, which are known to strip the skin of its natural oils, and full of aloe vera that helps the skin absorb moisture.
While it can be tempting to cool off in the shower for a while after a hot night, try not to spend more than five minutes under the water if you can help it. Over-showering can dry out your skin, undoing the aloe vera’s good work!
2. Moisturise with a fragrance-free cream
Moisturise immediately after your bath or shower to lock the hydration into your skin. Our Aloe Soothe Cream is one of the best moisturisers for sensitive skin because it’s free of the synthetic ingredients that add fragrance, which can be especially irritating for those prone to breakouts or allergies. In addition to organic aloe vera, it also contains another plant-derived anti-inflammatory ingredient called glycine soja (soybean) oil, which stimulates collagen. Apply it before sunscreen to keep your skin feeling dewy and nourished.
3. Drink plenty of water throughout the day
Did you know adults lose about three litres of water every day? And when you sweat in the heat, you lose even more. You should increase your water intake during summer to protect yourself from dehydration, headaches and low energy.
While experts can’t prove there’s a link between drinking lots of water and healthier skin, dermatologists believe hydration helps your skin repair and make new collagen. It’s recommended you drink two-and-a-half litres of water a day during summer (but not sugary soda, juice or caffeine) to keep your body in tip-top shape. You can also replenish your fluids by eating hydrating foods like cucumber, zucchini and watermelon.
4. Stick to the shade
Too much direct sunlight will dry out sensitive skin and make your sebaceous glands overproduce oil to compensate for the lack of moisture. This can lead to unwelcome irritations, like acne breakouts. So protect your skin whenever you can by wearing a hat, slapping on the SPF30 and sticking to the shade. Your future self will thank you!
5. Choose the right sunscreen for sensitive skin
Those with sensitive skin know that the wrong sunscreen can cause irritations or clog your pores, so let’s quickly run-through what you should be looking for when choosing your sunscreen.
First of all, in the harsh Australian sun, it’s vital that you wear sunscreen that is SPF30 or above, which will block 97% of rays. Anything less than that won’t provide adequate protection. It’s also best to buy a locally made sunscreen, because SPF ratings in Australia differ to SPF ratings overseas and internationally produced sunscreen can be weaker than the products we’re used to.
Finally, look for a sunscreen that says it will protect you against both UVA (which is linked to skin ageing) and UVB (which is linked to skin burning). We think Natural Instinct Invisible Natural Sunscreen SPF30 is one of the best sunscreens for those with sensitive skin because it’s produced with natural ingredients like rosehip oil and has a lightweight finish.
By following these five easy skincare tips every day, you can spend more time enjoying the beautiful weather and less time worrying about what it might be doing to your skin. Just drop into your local Chemist Warehouse store to find these products and more for sensitive skin types!