Georgie Cleeve, Founder of OSKIA
Summer can be a hazardous time for our skin. Excessive sun exposure (skin dehydration, pigmentation, prickly heat, sunburn) followed by dry, hot winds and overzealous office air conditioning can easily damage delicate cells and cause premature ageing.
1. Let’s start with the very obvious...Use an oil-free and fragrance-free SPF all day over your entire face and body, but never rely on your BB cream or moisturiser. You really should be using something as high as SPF 30 or above on cloudless, hot sunny days, but I don’t believe it’s necessary on sun-free cloudy winter days. We need our Vitamin D (20 mins of direct sunlight is enough) but UV rays also cause inflammation, dehydration, cell mutation, cell damage from free-radicals, pigmentation and skin cancer are worst. Please please never rely on the SPF in a moisturiser, BB cream, CC cream, serum or foundation. SPF needs to be regularly applied every few hours and applying it at 8am will simply not last you throughout the day - it gives a very false sense of security. Not only that, but a mineral SPF over 8 in your moisturiser, BB creams act as a fantastic UV barrier but will also prevent the absorption of the wonderful actives contained in that product and you can then ask yourself - what is the point?!
2. Keep it cool! Keep your skin cool especially if you have sensitive skin. If you have rosacea, eczema or sensitive skin, try to keep skin as cool as possible by keeping out of direct sun or keeping skincare products in the fridge. (It is also best to steer clear of saunas and steam, because they can aggravate your skin condition). Rosacea, which causes excessive flushing, broken blood vessels and/or acne-like red bumps, can be exacerbated when blood vessels dilate in response to the skin becoming overheated. Heat also draws water out of the skin, so eczema can become worse, sensitive skin can become irritated and atopic dermatitis (a rash caused by skin allergy or irritation) may itch more intensely. Normal skin will de-hydrate in heat, so moisturise, moisturise! Try chilling OSKIA’s Eye Wonder and applying a thick layer (for a treatment mask) or a thin layer if in a rush, to cool delicate skin.
3. Always moisturise, but switch to oil-free creams and serums. It is always tempting to miss out on a good moisturiser and eye cream during sticky summer months as your skin will be producing more sebum, generating that recognisable ‘summer shine’ and clogging pores, but your skin still needs serious moisture. Replace heavy winter, oil-based creams with lighter, oil-free or water-based serums or emulsions. Try OSKIA’s Nutri-Active Day Cream, which is super light in texture but carries a punch in the nutrient and anti-ageing active department. Or OSKIA’s Get Up & Glow, a water-based serum full of hydrating Hyaluronic Acid, brighteners and anti-ageing actives, such as Niacinamide (reduces pigmentation), Swiss Apple Stem Cells (protects skin’s DNA and reduces wrinkles), Butterbur (a fantastic anti-histamine), Ribose (an oxygenator that rejuvenates skin cells and increases ATP energy to breathe life back into dull skin), and natural light reflecting pigments – perfect for a natural summer glow.
4. Less is always more...Switch heavy mascaras and eyebrow pencils for eye lash and brow tinting. These are especially brilliant if you can’t stay out of the water, have very fine or light eyebrows or eye lashes, have contact lenses, want to steer clear of ‘Racoon eyes’ or simply want to enhance your looks. There are many different eyelash and eyebrow tint colours (including blues, browns, blacks and greys), so choose one that complements your skin and hair colouring perfectly.
5. Dewy skin is gorgeous. Don't over powder your face because you're afraid it's a grease pit. Instead, try blotting papers.
6. Remember your cleavage...The neck and décolletage are too often neglected and can suffer from premature ageing without you realizing. Your face might look wrinkle free, but any man will tell you that this area (once so smooth and plump) can reveal a lady’s real age. As a rule of thumb, treat your neck and décolletage as an extension of your face, continuing product application right the way down, be it cleanser, toner, moisturiser, serum, exfoliant or treatment mask. The earlier you start getting into this routine, the more grateful you will be later on down the line.
7. Exfoliate regularly...Our skin sheds cells every minute of every day, which results in dull, dry looking skin, particularly sun exposed skin as it dehydrates quickly. However much moisturiser you apply, your skin will never look glowing without removing these dead skin cells. Rejuvenation treatments such as exfoliations and nurturing masks restore the skin’s health and balance, so to ensure a healthy glow for the summer months, be sure to exfoliate 1–2 times a week. OSKIA’s Micro-Exfoliating Balm contains the finest silica and MSM granules, which dissolve on contact with water forming an anti-inflammatory milk, to buff away tired cells and stimulate regeneration, but also contains a nutrient-rich balm that will leave skin feeling super, super soft and smooth.
8. But, try to avoid using body and facial scrubs with coarse granules as they can scratch delicate, sun exposed skin. Instead either opt for an exfoliant containing fine silica granules or AHAs which will both evenly exfoliate as well as stimulate regeneration and improve the tone and texture of the skin. Our Renaissance Mask is the secret behind many a movie close up. Not only does it exfoliate, but cleans, clears and boosts the complexion for an instant improvement. It’s won 9 best mask awards to date so it is a formula that I am very proud of.
9. Remember your hands...I am always amazed at how smooth my hands are when I come back from holiday. Needless to say, this is due to applying endless suntan creams, exfoliants, aftersuns, masks and moisturisers countless times during the day and night, which obviously I don’t do when back at home. Hands, like your cleavage and neck, are age indicators, so try to exfoliate your hands a few times a week, apply a rich moisturiser and always apply an SPF to your hands, as you would your face. Treat age spots and dryness with our Renaissance Hand Cream.
10. Your upper arms. If, like about 40% of the population, you suffer from Keratosis Pilaris (those annoying little red bumps on the back of your upper arms) then it’s likely you’ll want to rid these before you expose your arms this summer. Whilst there is no definitive cure for this condition (unfortunately it is a very common genetic follicular condition which causes an excess of Keratin production that accumulates within the hair follicles forming numerous tiny rough bumps on the skin and commonly found in people with very dry skin and/or a vitamin A deficiency), daily exfoliating or using a good natural body brush, and moisturising with a vitamin and AHA rich cream, such as our Renaissance Body Treatment Milk, can definitely ease these pesky pimples and smooth and brighten your arms.
11. Prepare your skin internally before hitting the sun. Eating as many anti-oxidants as possible (the brighter the food the better), taking MSM supplements and following an anti-inflammatory diet can help reduce potential skin damage and premature ageing and keep skin super healthy. Inflammation is one of the biggest causes of skin damage and premature ageing, as well as a host of other health problems. Thomasina Miers has put together a delicious, Mexican Pan Fried Mackerel & Avocados Salad recipe that puts together some of the best anti-inflammatory ingredients – mackerel and avocados for their high Omega 3 content, ginger for its gingerols content (more specifically 6-gingerol), chilli (also high in vitamin A and C), olive oil, pumpkin and sesame seeds and oil.