Summer brings days spent at the beach, a late afternoon picnic or an all-day backyard BBQ. It also brings extended sun exposure. The skin we’re in is the body’s largest organ and its first line of defense. A multi-layer complex system that acts as a barrier from the outside world, our skin plays an important role in temperature regulation, vitamin production and protecting against germs. So it should come as no surprise that our body’s biggest bodyguard could benefit from an added layer of protection and care.
We chatted with our Lead Aesthetician, Lexi Grosvenor, about her tips to best look after your skin this summer.
Before applying SPF, what is the best way to prep the skin for long summer days spent in the sun?
Lexi: Take care of your skin. Start by cleansing your skin along with your AM skincare regimen. Apply sunscreen to moisturized skin 15 minutes before any sun exposure. Reapply throughout the day. Bring a hat and sun protective clothing to give your skin a break from the rays. You’ll be thankful in the long run. Fun Fact: Did you know sunscreen is the #1 anti-aging product on the market?
Is there an ideal SPF number to look for when shopping for a daily sunscreen?
Lexi: Contrary to popular belief, it is not always about SPF. I generally recommend starting at 30 SPF. Look for sunscreens with the “broad spectrum” labels that include UVA and UVB protection and for a sunscreen that is water resistant. Please note that SPF in your makeup is not enough!
What skin types are best suited for mineral sunscreens and what skin types are best suited for chemical sunscreens? What is the difference between the two?
Lexi: It comes down to preference. While chemical sunscreens offer long lasting protection they can be a bit harsh for those with sensitive skin; mineral sunscreens may be a bit less irritating for some, however, they do not absorb well and have been known to leave a white cast on the skin. The difference between the two is that physical sunscreen uses a mineral to reflect the light away from the skin. Chemical sunscreens absorb the UV rays and transform them into heat. Given this information, if you are someone that has rosacea, acne, or a compromised barrier you may find a mineral sunscreen better for the skin.
Do all skin tones need protection from the sun?
Lexi: Yes! Everyone needs protection from the sun. UV rays damage all skin cells no matter the melanin pigmentation.
Does sunscreen really need to be reapplied?
Lexi: Yes – Sunscreen should be reapplied every 2 hours! Why is that you ask? UV rays actually neutralize SPF and become ineffective.
How should one take care of their skin after a long day spent out in the sun?
Lexi: First and foremost, your daily sunscreen application should be applied 15 minutes prior to going outside. Be mindful to reapply sunscreen every 2 hour to prevent sun damage. Did you know there is also SPF wearable clothing like that from CooliBar . This gives an extra layer of protection for those long days outside. Some other simple tips are finding shade when possible (bring an umbrella) and staying hydrated.
Any advice for how best to treat a sunburn?
Lexi: You cannot reverse skin damage! You can, however, lessen the effects with oils and creams. Do not use cold water, ice or moisturizers immediately on the skin. Use room temperature water and aloe to treat the burn first. Vinegar Soaks are also a great way to calm and soothe compromised skin.
Do you recommend any products or treatments offered at HerMD to protect the skin’s barrier and promote a healthy complexion?
Lexi: Microneedling is great for all skin types. Using microneedling allows microscopic needles to penetrate into the skin causing controlled micro injuries to the skin resulting in new skin-cells, elastin, and collagen to grow. I do not recommend this directly after a sunburn but as an ongoing treatment plan to achieve a smoother texture, tone, and youthful appearance to the skin.
If you’re interested in a complimentary skin consultation with Lexi click here.