Top Skin Care Tips for Spring
I was on my way to New York’s Salon Ziba to indulge in one of their famous Deep Cleansing Facials, when I started thinking about what other seasonal skin care ideas should we include in our regimes as we move from Spring to Summer.
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve started thinking not about aging, but about the things I should be doing to take better care of myself in general-everything from exercise to moisturizer. Everybody passes through different stages in life, from their childhood to adulthood - and as we get older, we experience changes in our physical appearance, and naturally become more concerned with the way we look. Looking your best is a topic drawing increased attention and with that comes skincare professionals cluttering the conversation (both online and offline) with the latest skin care product offerings for anti aging solutions.
Just as winter weather makes us pay special attention to our skin, summer, with its sun and heat, has its requirements too. It’s a scientific fact that skin loses elasticity as we age (i.e., it becomes less resilient, develops wrinkles and often ages prematurely) if proper care is not maintained. No one would argue that keeping our skin cleansed, pampered and hydrated is part of a successful year-round regime, but what do experts say are the essentials necessary to prepare our skin now for healthy and fresh summer skin later?
To find out just what we need to do to prepare our skin for the season’s change, I met with Kiehl’s consulting dermatological expert and international brand ambassador Adam Geyer, M.D. at his Tribeca Park Dermatology offices in Manhattan to get the answers. The doctor and his team of board certified dermotological professionals have created a skincare sanctuary in the heart of Tribeca, offering a full-slate of medical and cosmetic treatments-some of which I’ve taken advantage of from time to time.
When asked to share his "Top Secrets for Getting Your Skin Ready for Spring," Dr. Geyer offered the following tips to get started:
1. Get procedures that have some downtime out of the way ASAP. If you are considering going in for a deeper chemical peel or a resurfacing laser treatment, why not do it when it is still socially acceptable to hibernate!
2. Get your moles checked before summer... before everyone starts checking you out on the beach, you should first have your moles checked by a professional.
3. The harsh days of winter can take their toll on your skin’s barrier function- this can lead to visible signs of dehydration as well as an increased susceptibility to infection. Reestablish a healthy barrier and good hydration to help your skin look and function at its best. Products with niacinamide and ceramides are particularly effective. Two examples: NIA24 Skin Strengthening Complex, CeraVe pm.
4. Exfoliate for a brighter skin tone... but make sure to do it at night, not in the morning. This will help to minimize any added sun sensitivity. Exfoliation removes the outer layer of dead skin cells so that light reflects evenly off the surface of the skin. This helps our skin to look more vibrant and healthy, but it also makes us more sensitive to the sun and can increase susceptibility to sunburn and photo-damage if the skin is not protected.
5. Accept once and for all that there is no such thing as a healthy, protective tan. All tans are a sign of sun damage. Get that sun-kissed glow by starting 3-4 weeks before Spring with a daily moisturizer with a small amount of self tanner. The gradual approach tends to look more natural and have less risk of streaking and leaving you the same color as your morning’s glass of orange juice.
6. Speaking of orange juice- Vitamin C is a great ingredient to use on your skin in Spring and Summer. It has a natural photo-protective effect and does a lot of things well-it evens skin tone and can significantly improve fine lines and wrinkles. One good example- Kiehl’s Powerful Strength Line Reducing Concentrate.
7. If you want to get rid of excess body hair throughout the Spring and Summer, know that not all lasers are created equal. Granted, you want a laser to target the melanin in your hair and not in your skin, and the more contrast there is between the color of your hair and the color of your skin the better. But if you happen to get some inadvertent color and still want to move forward with your treatments, make sure your provider uses a longer wavelength laser such as the Nd-Yag 1064nm laser. This longer wavelength ensures that the light passes underneath the skin to target hair without leaving you with unwanted burns or white spots in the overlying skin.