Welcome to Part 1 of our 3 part Summer Skin Series: Tips To Protect Your Skin + Prevent Sun Damage. This series is here to help you soak up all this season has to offer – without any harmful side effects. Check out Part 2 (common summer skin woes + what to do about them) and Part 3 (the best products to repair dry, sun-drenched skin)!
Brighter days, longer evenings and warmer temps are finally here. After a hard few months, we couldn’t be more ready for Summer and all this season brings. You too?
However, from a skincare perspective, hotter days, more sun rays and outdoor adventures can lead to some pretty serious (or not-so-pretty, should we say) skin issues. Sun damage, dehydrated skin, and bug bites don’t have to be a sign that Summer has arrived. That’s why we’re starting out our Summer Skin Series with pro tips to help protect your skin and prevent sun damage as we soak up every second of this season.
Protect your skin with these simple steps to ensure your skin glows with health – without any harmful side effects.
After spending more time indoors than ever before, we strongly encourage you to get outside and soak up the immune + mood-boosting benefits of the sun (something we could all use more of right about now!). But with the associated health risks of too much sun (free radical damage, inflammation at a cellular level + compromised skin integrity), we need to be mindful of how we spend time in the sun.
Here’s the best way to soak up its healing light without the harmful side effects: short bursts of sunshine first thing in the morning.
Morning light is less intense than the midday rays and it’s been proven that starting your day outside without typical sun protection (aka sunscreen or sunglasses) is most beneficial to support your circadian rhythm, mood, immune system, Vitamin D levels and even your skin.
Summer Skin Tip: Depending on your skin tone, your safe sun time can vary. Fair-skinned? Stick to about 20 minutes of unprotected sunlight. Medium to dark-skinned? More melanin in the skin means you can soak up the sun a little longer to increase Vit D levels without the worry of incurring sun damage.
SLIP, SLOP, SLAP
If you know you’ll be spending more time outdoors (especially during the hours of 10-2 when the sun’s rays are the strongest), here are 3 simple tips to keep in mind.
Have you heard this famous slogan in regards to sun safety? It’s a pretty all-encompassing sun protection strategy and we’re going to break it down for you (plus share some of our fav brands to slip, slop and slap).
Slip on a shirt: Or a sundress! These sustainable small businesses create conscious caftans to keep your skin covered all Summer long. Tribe Alive, LemLem, and Pondicherie.
Slop on (non-toxic) sunscreen: For long days in the sun, apply sunscreen about half an hour before putting on your suit or sundress to make sure every part of your skin is protected. Keep scrolling below for our safe sunscreen picks!
Slap on a hat: A wide-brimmed beach hat (we love this ethical hat brand for hot summer days!) and oversized sunnies are the perfect accessories to keep you shaded and stylish.
For Summer days when covering up or finding shade isn’t an option, applying sunscreen made from natural, non-toxic ingredients is a must.
You guys, we can’t stress this point enough: avoid conventional sunscreens that contain toxins, chemicals and even heavy metals that can contribute to hormone disruption, organ toxicity and cancer. Look for labels with safe ingredients that protect your skin + your health, such as non-nano zinc oxide, which provides broad-spectrum protection against both UVA (aging rays/deeper penetrating) and UVB (burning rays/damages top layer of skin) rays.
Here are some of our non-toxic favorites that have been formulated specifically for your face, body and whole family.
- Raw Elements: perfect for face, body and even baby!
- Badger Balm: safe sunscreen options for every outdoor activity.
- Ilia Super Serum Skin Tint: with SPF 40 this provides a light layer of coverage (for all skin tones!) with a full layer of sun protection.
- W3ll People Bio-Tint Moisturizer: non-toxic lightweight makeup that doubles as sun defense with SPF 30.
PACK A PICNIC
Did you know you can get an extra dose of sun protection from your diet? Pack a summer picnic with plenty of pure water + snacks that rebuild hydration from the inside out while enhancing the skin’s natural defense against sun damage.
Red fruits/veg: Get your fill of lycopene from foods like watermelon, red peppers, papaya, and pink grapefruits for powerful antioxidant properties that significantly increase the skin’s ability to protect itself against free radical damage.
Orange/yellow foods: Carrots, cantaloupe, sweet potato and mango are potent in beta-carotene and provide antioxidant + vitamin-rich properties to protect your skin and eyes from harmful sun exposure.
Dark, leafy greens: Give the body a beautifying boost of hydration + minerals which help to strengthen the skin’s ability to protect itself as well as to counter the damage from extended sun exposure.
Skin-loving oils: Rich in Vitamin E and omega 3, healthy oils such as Extra Virgin Olive Oil, have been found to deliver protection and healing nutrients to the skin.
Sip green tea: This herbal tea is packed with powerful polyphenols, helps to slow down the aging process due to sun damage and contains cancer-fighting properties. (Try making iced green tea and add pomegranate seeds for an even more refreshing, sun-protective beverage!)
Now that we’ve covered all things sun, let’s talk about how to prevent those pesky bug bites that seem to be inevitable every Summer.
Find a plant-based defense system (without dangerous DEET) to protect your family from synthetic pesticides + toxic chemicals found in conventional bug sprays AND from the potential of incurring serious sicknesses/diseases from mosquitoes, ticks and other insects.
Packing this Nature Spray for your summer gatherings, outdoor picnics and camping trips will provide the protection you need – without any harmful side effects. These are a few insect-fighting essential oils that are proven to keep skin (and your pets!) protected from bites:
- Citronella (proven ingredient to protect against mosquitos bites)
- Lemongrass (close cousin to Citronella and when blended together, these two oils work even better!)
- Geranium (strong wound healer that also repels mosquitos + ticks)
- Cedarwood (effective against ants, ticks and other insects – it also helps protect your pets from bites!)
Summer Skin Tip: In addition to spraying a natural alternative to keep bugs away, protect skin with a cute scarf tied around your neck, pull up your socks just a bit and remember, a bandana always comes in handy.
See, safe Summer skincare can be fun, simple and delicious! Put on your favorite sundress, toss together a fruit or veg salad, sip some iced tea, and let your mind + body be at ease all season long.
Stay tuned for Part 2 where we’ll dive into remedies just in case you still experience some common Summer skin woes that come with the season. 🙂