You already know everything there is to know about sunscreen. But there’s more to keeping your skin protected during the summer than simply taking cover from the sun. Here, five ways to remain unscathed through September.
1. Exfoliate less. Decadent sugar scrubs on your body? Go for it. Chemical exfoliants like glycolic or salicylic acid on your face? Ease up. In the days leading up to a beach vacation, taper use as they can increase your sensitivity to the sun.
2. Increase your vitamin C. Topical, that is. When the sun is out in full force, you’re at a higher risk for free-radical damage. Vitamin C serums can slow down the appearance of aging, so layer it on daily.
3. Reapply sunscreen often–especially if you’re oily. Natural oils break down sunscreens more quickly (which means you’re less protected) so keep a close eye on the areas you tend to get greasy–like your forehead and nose–and reapply whenever you start to look slick. A powdered formula or a stick makes it easy to refresh on the go.
4. Take cool showers. Not only is a stinging hot shower the last thing you want after a day in the sun, but it also strips your skin and dries you out even more. Stick to a lukewarm or cool shower and moisturize within a couple minutes of toweling off. And on that note…
5. Moisturize often. The most important factor in healing wounds (ahem, that accidental sunburn) is keeping the area well moisturized. So even though you probably don’t want to slather lotion on your tender skin, doing so will help the burn go away faster. Just stick to simple formulas that won’t irritate your skin.