What do shorts, sundresses, tank tops and swimsuits have in common? Apart from being summer wardrobe staples, they all show some skin. And with more skin exposed to the sun during the warmer months, taking steps to keep your skin healthy, strong and protected is key. Read on for some of the ways you can keep your skin looking young and radiant this summer.
Eat Healthy Fats
Omega-3 fatty acids play a crucial role in skin health. When you are eating enough omega-3s, your skin will be soft, supple and moisturized. The fats reduce inflammation, the culprit behind redness, blotchiness and acne, and have even been found to make the skin less sensitive to the sun’s harmful UV rays. Top sources of omega-3s include fatty fish like salmon, mackerel and herring, avocadoes and walnuts. These foods also contain vitamin E, which helps protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals or oxidation.
Slather on Sunscreen
It may be old news, but it works: sunscreen is the most effective way (apart from always wearing long sleeves and pants) to protect the skin from the UV rays that can cause sunburns, blisters and skin cancer. To make the most of your sunscreen, dermatologists suggest choosing one with broad-spectrum protection, meaning it protects against UVA and UVB rays, and using at least SPF 30. Water resistance is also key, especially if you’re going to be swimming. For maximum protection, apply every two hours, even on cloudy days. Using a self-tanning product to make your skin look tanner? Make sure you’re still applying sunscreen along with it.
Deal with Sweat Gently
Summer is the season of sweating…and sweating…and sweating. Your first instinct when it comes to sweat might be to rub it off as quickly as possible, but aggressively wiping sweat with a damp towel or a sweaty shirt further mixes the sweat with the oils on your skin, which can clog the pores and cause breakouts and other skin irritations. Instead, dermatologists recommend blotting sweat with a clean towel or cloth and gently washing the skin in the shower—avoid scrubs and exfoliants. Also smart: Using oil-free cleansers and moisturizers on the parts of your body where you sweat the most or are prone to breakouts.
Use Aloe Vera Two Ways
Soothing sunburnt or irritated skin with aloe vera gel has been a popular strategy for years, and for good reason—it feels fantastic, plus delivers vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that reduce inflammation and skin irritation. But there is another way to get the skin-nourishing benefits: Drinking aloe vera juice. Just as your skin absorbs all the nutrients when you apply the gel directly, they will reach your skin cells from the inside when you drink the juice. Aloe vera juice is also incredibly hydrating, which makes it a great summer sip that can help combat the common cycle of sunburn and dehydration. To get the perks, look for an aloe vera juice that is organic, pure and 100% aloe vera, not mixed with any other juices or fillers.
Do you have a surefire strategy for protecting your skin during the summer?We want to hear about it! Comment on our latest Instagram post @powerforlifefitness and let us know!