Summertime means lazy days on the beach or leisurely backyard BBQs; however, I don't slack on my skincare routine. As seasons change, your skin will need different products to adapt to the climate. Fortunately, I live in a place where the climate doesn't change drastically. (That can't be said about a plane though. I'll write more about that in a future post.) For my combination skin, I opt for lighter textures and more viscous formulas that won't clog my pores.
My daytime skincare routine is really simple. It's only three products. Let's be real. I value my beauty sleep, and my morning routine needs to be efficient. The last thing you want to feel is product weighing down your face when you're conquering the world during the day.
Step 1: Cleanser
The cleanser's main function is to remove makeup, dead skin cells, dirt and other types of impurities from your skin. It helps keep your pores clear and keep skin conditions like acne at bay. The perfect summer cleanser should be light and clean. If your skin feels too dry or squeaky clean, then the cleanser is too strong. Your skin is slightly acidic (pH ~5.5), so opt for cleansers with low pH. My current favorite is the Dewy Tree Clean Healthy Foam formulated with effective, natural ingredients and gently cleanses at pH of 5.9. Unfortunately, there is no reliable distributor in the US unless you're willing to pay 2x the price. For US-based peeps and don't mind a strong tea tree odor, a great cost-effective alternative is the CosRX Low pH Good Morning Cleanser.
If you're really pressed for time (or just lazy like me), you can just take a cotton pad with some cleansing water or cleansing wipes and swipe it over your face. I always have a stash of Primera Moisture Cleansing Tissue or Cremorlab Cleansing Veil Tissue. A great cleansing water is the innisfree Superfood Blueberry Rebalancing Cleansing Water.
Step 2: Essence (or Serum)
No toner? Toner serves to rebalance skin pH back to normal and even out skin texture. Since you're already using a cleanser close to your skin pH levels, toner is not as critical in the morning. I personally dislike creams and lotions. I find them to be too heavy and feel sticky even under light makeup. Essences pack all the active ingredients and formulated to deeply penetrate your skin. Nowadays, essence formulations have advanced to have active ingredient concentrations closer to what you find in serums, rebalance and even out the skin like toners, and give lasting hydration like lotions. The must-have ingredients you should look out for are hyaluronic acid (hydration) and anti-oxidants like Vitamin C and A (to prevent free radical damage from the sun and pollution. Be certain to use these products within six months of opening for maximum effectiveness.
Step 3: Sunscreen
SPF is your best friend during the summer. I'm not talking about creamy sunscreens that make you look like a ghost. This generation's sunscreens are light and airy yet strongly protects you from the sun's harmful rays with SPF 50. They are also formulated with hydrating ingredients, so you really don't need moisturizer. My current favorites are Thank You Farmer Sun Project Light Essence and Lagom Sun Gel.
There you have it. My daytime skincare routine is not as complicated as many would think. Next week, I'll cover my nighttime routine.