Summer Beauty from the Inside Out

Even in the extreme heat, humidity, and sunshine of summer, let your inner health and beauty shine through.

Prevent summer skin setbacks

You've emerged from winter's harsh, windy conditions and done some spring cleaning on your skin. When summer comes, it's a whole new set of potential skin setbacks. Get a heads-up about a few common setbacks so you'll know how to keep your skin glowing with health.

Spirited summer adventures set you up for sweaty and dirty skin. In the summer, you're more likely to be part of beach holidays, camping and hiking expeditions, bicycle rides, or soccer matches in the park. Between all the picnics and play-dates, you still need to go to work and seem (and smell) presentable. But excess washing up and showering can rob your skin of surface oils and leave you feeling and looking dried out.

  • Keep your skin supple by taking quick, warm (never hot!) showers.
  • Apply a light moisturizer to enrich and seal in your skin's natural moisture.

A desire for smooth, hairless legs and armpits sets you up for razor burn and ingrown hairs. If you want to wear bikinis, shorts, miniskirts, or tank tops, you might shave more often now than at other times of the year.

  • A warm shower preps your skin for an even shave, and a scrub from bath gloves, a loofah, or a coarse-fibred washcloth exfoliates the skin.
  • Lather up with a shaving gel or cream (hair conditioner can work in a pinch).
  • Use a sharp razor blade and shave gently in the direction of your hair's growth; take your time – rinsing well and doing a soft pat-dry.
  • Lightly glide a bit of moisturizer over your skin to prevent dryness and irritation.

Sun, sand, and surf set you up for burns, itches, and irritations. So use sunscreen diligently and your skin will thank you in the long and short run. In the long run, the sun's ultraviolet (UV) radiation damages the skin, leading to photoageing and an increased risk of developing skin cancer. In the short run, UV rays can cause sunburns. Sand and salty seawater can be therapeutic and exfoliating to some people's skin, but irritating to others. Prolonged exposure to water and wind can also dehydrate your skin, making it appear dull or dry.

  • Apply a sunscreen of at least SPF 30 before going outside and reapply it 20 minutes after stepping out and throughout the day, especially after you've been in the water or sweating.
  • Wash off promptly after beach romps to prevent sand chafing (especially on recently sunburned skin – ouch!).
  • Dry sand or a sprinkle of baby powder can also help to shake caked sand off of your skin.

Feed your skin
Summer brings tasty temptations: the siren call of the ice cream truck, the BBQ aromas wafting over fences, and sticky carnival sweets. It's all right to indulge now and then, but your food and beverage choices can affect your skin, for better or worse. You want to strive for the better, right?

  • Drink plenty of water. Dehydration can sap your skin of its lustre, and leave you too sluggish to splash, surf, or swim and too pooped to play.
  • Know your healthy summer skin ABCs. Eat foods with skin-enriching antioxidants, such as vitamins A, C, and E. It shouldn't be too hard to find a spot in your summer picnic basket for nuts, citrus fruits, and dark, leafy greens! And B vitamins support skin cells; especially biotin, which can be found in eggs, rice, and oatmeal.
  • Swim with the fishes. Essential fatty acids, found in cold-water fish, like salmon and mackerel, are responsible for skin repair, moisture, and elasticity.

How to keep your lips sexy and safe this summer

Summer sun makes us smile, our lips curling into grins as we think of vacations, outdoor fun, and the renewed sense of play and adventure the season brings. If your lips could speak for themselves this summer, don't you wonder what they'd say?

Cover me! You coat your body in sunscreen, and shield your scalp with a cap. But your lips are out there in the open all the time, exposed to sunshine, wind, and dry air. The tender skin of the lips is actually more susceptible to sun damage and more likely to develop skin cancer than many other spots on the body. Actinic cheilitis is a type of precancerous growth on the lips that can be brought on by sun exposure. Protect your lips with sunscreen-fortified balm with at least 30 SPF, applying it whenever you'll be outside for more than 20 minutes.

Go easy on the gloss! When you slather on shimmery, shiny lip gloss and balms, you attract more of the sun's light to your lips, increasing the risk of sun damage. No need to go nude, though, as lots of sunscreen lip balms come in cool tones and colours.

Dudes, where's your lip balm? Women are more likely to use UV lip protection than men. But guys still need just as much sun security, so slip a stick of sunscreen-enhanced lip balm into your pocket and apply whenever you'll be outside for more than 20 minutes.

Bottoms up! Perhaps your nose provides some shade, because your lower lip tends to be more prone to sun exposure than the upper lip. Make sure to use plenty of sunscreen balm on your lower lip, and reapply if you go in the water or lick your lips too much over the BBQ.

Summer goal: no bad hair days!

What do you think of when you hear the words "summer hair?" Do you see a sexy, laid-back beach style, gently tousled by a sea breeze? The wet, swept-back Bond girl look? Or maybe those vacation braided cornrows? If you're envisioning a messy mop of dried-out straw, or a limp and lifeless curtain around your shoulders, you're not the only one. Summer hair should be fun and effortless, like the season. Unfortunately, heat, sunshine, and other natural (and not-so-natural) elements can make taking care of your hair a real challenge.

Here's how to turn summer hair don'ts into sexy hair do's:

  • Skip a day. Unless you go swimming or get really dirty and sweaty, you can get by with a shampoo once every other day. If you're prone to dry, brittle summer tresses, choose products with boosted moisturizing capabilities. If your hair is liable to go limp, opt instead for protein-enriched shampoos. Indulge your sun-dried hair in an occasional deep conditioning treatment, or try out protective hair masks.
  • Wash in some sun protection. Seek out shampoo and conditioner options infused with elements that protect against sun damage.
  • Prime your hair for the plunge. Before diving into chlorinated pool water, wet your hair with normal water. Some savvy pool pros even stash a spray bottle in the bags for just this purpose. Chemicals in pool water can discolour and damage your hair. The minerals in salty sea water may also strip it of moisture. Douse your hair with freshwater soon after a dip in the ocean. Alternatively, wear a swimming cap so water doesn't touch your tresses.
  • Cover up or pile up. Shield your precious locks from the peak sun hours, between 10 am and 4 pm. Hats and scarves can offer coverage, while a loose, upswept ponytail or bun keeps wind from whipping tangles into your hair.
  • Lower the heat. Lay off the hair dryers, curling irons, and flattening irons because goodness knows your hair will get enough heat outside. If you can't part with that even part, give your hair a break, using heat tools infrequently or on special occasions. Products are also available that buffer the heat of irons and hair dryers.
  • Go on a sexy, summer hair diet. Hair that shines and shimmers in the sunshine needs nourishment. Feed your hair from the inside-out with a steady diet of hair-healthy ingredients, including omega-3-rich fish and lean protein-packed foods like shrimp, turkey or chicken breast, or tofu.
Homeweb Logo

Homeweb offers you a wealth of resources so you can learn, read and get support however and whenever you need it.