You’ve put the screens back in your windows and have a nice breeze wafting freshair into your home. The heavy jackets have been packed with cedar and stowed under your bed, and you’ve even taken a few of the rugs outside and shaken out the dust. The last touches of a cold winter have been driven from your home, but there’s one place that January’s icy touch can still be seen – on your skin. Summer is one huge party for your skin – a chance to really show off!
But just as you make room for warmer weather in your home, your skin needs some spring-cleaning to get ready for its sunny debut. Repairing winter damage and preparing for summer exposure are the two most important parts of spring skin care. It’s actually surprisingly simple, and certainly easier than getting your husband to help you organize the garage.
So, how will you breathe life into skin fatigued by the freezing cold?
- Out with the old – Start fresh, with clean skin. For body scrubs I recommend choosing ones with sugar. The sugar molecules help to slough off dead dry skin, but also encourage the new skin to hold on to moisture.For face scrubs look for enzyme masques as they are much more gentle. If you plan to get a facial you can make it more effective, along with any other of your treatment products, by using an enzyme mask a week beforehand toloosen up dead skin and refine pores.
- In with the new – When spring cleaning your skin, take your efforts to the medicine cabinet! Get rid of all the old half-empty products you’re never going to use, the sunscreens from last season that are expired, and simplify your skincare. Just a few spring-appropriate products will do the trick: try a new cleanser (something more thorough with less oil), a lighter moisturizer(water-based works better when you’re producing more oil), and even a nice foot product to get yourself sandal-ready (urea/ureic acid products with intense emollients help erase the damage from three suffocating months of closed toe shoes).
- Highlight your health – Nothing says spring like glowing healthy skin. Add a new anti-aging product to your daily routine to smooth out fine lines and wrinkles and even skin tone. Don’t forget the skin on your body, either! Then newest anti-aging body treatments firm and smooth skin to keep you looking young all over. If you gave up exercising because it was cold, get back out there! Exercise is proven to help stimulate the production of collagen. Most importantly, keep yourself looking youthful with sun protection – more time in the sun means you should be using a daily SPF of at least 20 on any exposed areas. Don’t forget your hands.
- Add a little color – If you really want that sun-kissed summer color, you should know by now that self-tanners are the only healthy way to go. Make sure to go with a bronzer that has a rose undertone, not brown or yellow. Rose adds a healthy freshness, while the other colors make the skin look unhealthy and much more aged. Before using the bronzer, you can enhance its effect by first using a body scrub. To compliment your fresh spring face now is the time to update your hair color as well. For an extra lift get a few face framing highlights. They’ll reflect light around your features and give a subtle glow.
The right spring cleaning helps you refresh your spirit for a new year, but it should also give your skin the confidence to emerge from under scarves, long sleeves, and boots. This may be a skincare column, but allow me to give you a little fashion advice – bashful winter skin just does not go with that new sundress you bought. So shake off the final few breaths of winter, and welcome a fresh new season with radiant skin that’s ready for its moment in the sun! Read about my AM and PM routine for spring!