How to Treat Summer Breakouts (and 5 More Warm-Weather Skin Problems)
In hot weather, your skin's oil production tends to increase, potentially causing blemishes on your face and body, says Scottsdale, Arizona, dermatologist Jennifer Linder, MD.
Your Prevention Plan: Use a noncomedogenic sunscreen, like La Roche-Posay Anthelios 60 Cooling Water-Lotion Sunscreen. Before you reapply, wipe your face with a cleansing towelette (such as Neutrogena Naturals Purifying Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes), says New York City dermatologist Francesca Fusco, MD. Spot-treat facial blemishes with a salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide product (like Olay Fresh Effects Clear Skin 2-in-1 Salicylic Acid Acne Spot Treatment). Sensitive skin? Choose a salicylic acid treatment with anti-inflammatory azelaic acid (PCA Skin Acne Gel is a good one). For body breakouts, try a benzoyl peroxide cleanser (such as Jan Marini Benzoyl Peroxide 2.5% Wash), says Linder.
2.Summer Bummer: Dry Skin
It's usually the result of too much time in the water or chlorine exposure.
Your Prevention Plan: Shower only once a day, and exfoliate with a scrub to allow your moisturizer to penetrate better (we love Jo Malone London Geranium & Walnut Body Scrub). Use a cream containing hyaluronic acid or glycerin (like Curel Rough Skin Rescue Smoothing Lotion). If you're a swimmer, says Linder, rinse with a creamy hydrating cleanser (such as Dove Go Fresh Revitalize Body Wash) as soon as you get out of the pool.
3. Summer Bummer: Those Little Red Bumps
You're probably shaving more frequently, which means you're more prone to developing folliculitis (inflammation of the hair follicles).
Your Prevention Plan: Avoid rich lotions right after shaving, which could irritate, and cleanse with an antibacterial soap (like Cetaphil Gentle Cleansing Antibacterial Bar), says Fusco. Use a redness-relief moisturizer on problem spots (we suggest Clinique Redness Solutions Daily Relief Cream).
4. Summer Bummer: Hyperpigmentation
No matter how careful you are with the SPF, you might notice dark spots—possibly the result of prior unprotected sun exposure.
Your Prevention Plan: Strengthen your UV defense by pairing your sunscreen with a vitamin C serum, says Linder. Look for one that contains L-ascorbic acid (try SkinMedica Vitamin C+E Complex). To fade brown spots, apply a 2 percent hydroquinone cream (like Glytone Clarifying Skin Bleaching Fading Lotion), Linder says.
5. Summer Bummer: Heat Rash
Things get itchy when sweat glands are blocked, trapping perspiration beneath the skin.
Your Prevention Plan: Exfoliate daily with a mild scrub (such as Kiehl's Gently Exfoliating Body Scrub), says Fusco. As soon as you notice any itchiness, apply a cold compress; then dab on 0.5 percent hydrocortisone cream and moisturize with a lotion containing aloe, feverfew, or calendula (try Burt's Bees Soothingly Sensitive Aloe & Buttermilk Body Lotion).
6. Summer Bummer: Cold Sores
Sunlight can trigger an outbreak: It decreases your immune system's ability to fight the HSV-1 virus.
Your Prevention Plan: Wear a sun hat on beach days to shield your lips from UV rays. A lysine supplement may also help prevent sores, says Fusco. If you have frequent flare-ups, Linder recommends taking an oral medication, like acyclovir, before prolonged sun exposure.