Six essential tools for summer skin care continued...
Oily types can tolerate a salicylic cleanser once a day, but those with drier and more sensitive skin should limit use to once a week to avoid irritation.
Top cleanser product picks include:
• Biore Blemish-Fighting Ice Cleanser ($7.99/6.7 oz) has cooling menthol and 2% salicylic acid to keep you feeling fresh.
• Olay Total Effects Anti-Blemish Daily Cleanser ($7.49/5 oz) battles breakouts and wrinkles in one gentle formula.
• Pond's Dramatic Results Age-defying Cleansing Towelettes ($6.49/30 wipes) are premoistened, so you can keep them next to your bed for nights when you're too tired to wash with water.
3. Daily Antioxidant Serum
Serums are like the Altoids of skin care: Their nutrient-packed drops are curiously potent despite the small dose. "Serums are designed to be condensed and deliver high levels of the active ingredient in a very efficient way," says Francesca Fusco, assistant clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City. She advises applying an antioxidant serum every morning, before you put on any other product. "Antioxidants absorb damage-causing free radicals and act like an extra layer of protection when worn under sunscreen," Fusco says.
"It's especially crucial that you include an antioxidant in your summer skin care routine since exposure to UV rays creates free radicals and no sunscreen can block all the rays."
Look for a serum containing one of the following proven skin-protecting ingredients: vitamin C, green or white tea, ferulic acid, or vitamin E.
• Juice Organics Vitamin Antioxidant Serum ($20/1 oz) gives your skin the benefits of a glass of fresh-squeezed OJ with a potent form of vitamin C.
• Kinerase N6-Furfuryladenine Hydrating Antioxidant Mist ($29/6.6 oz) offers another way to absorb antioxidants in this white-tea-loaded skin drink.
• Origins A Perfect World White Tea Skin Guardian ($33.50/1 oz) shields the skin from environmental damage with silver-tip white tea.
While it makes sense to strip off heavy layers of clothing once the mercury rises, you shouldn't go naked. The same goes for your skin. "Sweat and humidity might make you feel greasier, but your skin still needs moisture to say healthy," says dermatologist Amy Weschler, MD, assistant clinical professor of dermatology at SUNY Downstate Medical Center. And the salt in perspiration along with heat can actually cause more dehydration. "Without added moisture, your pores produce more sebum to compensate for drying, which causes a frustrating cycle of breakouts and irritation," Weschler says.
"Switch to lighter products such as oil-free lotions and milks rather than creams or ointments," Colbert says. He suggests looking for oil-free formulas and ingredients such as silica that will give your skin more of a matte look, especially if you have an oily complexion. Otherwise, your moisturizer should sink into your skin within 30 minutes and not look shiny.