Skin care can be challenging at the best of times, but summer heat tends to make things a lot worse. In addition to having to sweat it out, you also have to deal with sunburn, prickly heat, acne outbreaks, and other summer skin problems. In truth, most of these problems are avoidable and easy to deal with if you update your summer skin care routine in the right manner. Instead of using expensive cosmetics and undergoing dermatological treatments, you can rely on the wisdom of Ayurveda, using some simple age-old wisdom to keep your summer skin healthy and glowing.
Healthy skin begins with hydration, so don’t forget to maintain an adequate intake of water at all times. It would also be a good idea to cut back on beverages that have diuretic effects such as caffeinated and alcoholic beverages. Adequate hydration is important as it also keeps your skin hydrated and helps your body flush out toxins that can otherwise buildup and exacerbate skin problems. You can also up your intake of water by including the best foods for summers like watermelons and tender coconuts in your diet.
Dark spots or sun spots and hyperpigmentation are some common problems that surface in summer due to the increased heat and sun exposure. This risk can be reduced and treated with simple Ayurvedic home remedies using common household ingredients like Haldi and milk. One of the simplest and most inexpensive skin tips for summer is to make a paste with Haldi powder and milk that you apply over your skin. Haldi not only has antibacterial effects, lowering the risk of infection, but it also has proven skin lightening effects that can help reduce pigmentation.
Moisturizing is an important part of your skin care routine even in the summer months, especially if you live in an area that has excessive dry heat or if you are in an air-conditioned room with dry air. At the same time, you’ll want to go easy on moisturizers as your skin tries to manage body temperature by producing more natural skin oils to keep the skin moisturized. Using heavy cosmetic moisturizers can actually clog the pores and trap dead skin cells, aggravating summer skin conditions like acne. Your best option is to use natural moisturizers like aloe gel, or other herbal moisturizers that contain aloe as they are not oil-based and won’t leave a greasy residue. This is perhaps the most important of all summer skin care tips for oily skin.
Both prickly heat and sunburn can be more than a minor annoyance, causing considerable discomfort during the summer months. This can be effectively relieved or even prevented by using Ayurvedic and herbal body masks that are prepared with ingredients like sandalwood, mint, Haridra, and neem, among others. These may be in the form of creams or powders that you can then use as a paste. You can also use fuller’s earth or Multani Mitti, as it has an extremely soothing and cooling effect on the skin.
Although coconut oil is most strongly associated with hair care in India, the oil is also highly valued in Ayurveda for its skin care benefits. Today, skin care during summer is most strongly associated with the use of sunscreens that are meant to protect against sun damage caused by UVA and UVB radiation. While sunscreens can provide protection, most contain chemicals that can also adversely affect your skin. This is why it’s best to stick with traditional or natural sunscreens like coconut oil instead. This is now backed by evidence from studies that show that coconut oil protects against UV exposure.
Your skin is vulnerable to free radical damage, the main cause of ageing, as a result of exposure to high levels of pollution and most importantly, sunlight. The intensity of UV radiation is highest during summer, making it important to up your intake of antioxidants that can protect against oxidative stress and free radical damage. This means eating more herbs and spices, as well as taking Ayurvedic supplements and using skin care products with ingredients like Amla, Manjistha, Besan, Haldi, and others that are rich in antioxidants.
One of the foundations of healthy skin in Ayurveda is healthy nourishment, which requires a balanced diet and strong digestion. This is especially important in summer and you should make it a point to follow Ayurvedic dietary recommendations at least during these months. Increased intake of fresh produce, including fruits and vegetables, while limiting processed food intake, provides you with a range of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that can help improve collagen production, reduce inflammation, and lower skin damage caused by heat and sun exposure.
In addition to following these skin care tips for summer, you should also try to identify your Prakriti or dosha type so that you can follow personalized skin care and diet routine during the summer months.