9 November 2019

Breakout This Summer, Not Your Skin

Breakout This Summer, Not Your Skin

The sunshine maybe drawing us all outdoors – wet winter well and truly behind us – but unfortunately that’s not all that’s drawing out. For many of us warmer weather can intensify skin problems – or even bring about totally new skin issues we’ve never had before – not ideal! So, to ensure you put your best foot forward this summer, we’re arming you with a little summertime skin ‘must know abouts’ so you’ can keep yur skin in check.

Melasma – Quite different to melanoma

The names may have similarities but melasma and melanoma are quite different. Unlike the skin cancer, melasma refers to those brown and grey-brown-like patches that can form on both face and body – think forehead, cheeks, nose – and the sun can often make them stand out further. Whilst the condition is more common in women – as it can be triggered by hormonal imbalances – no one is exempt. It appears when certain skin cells become hyperactive and produce too much pigment in certain areas. Unlike freckles melasma patches tend to be distinctly larger.

So, how to treat and avoid worsening melasma problem patches? First things first, avoiding direct sunlight is a must – so being diligent with your sun protection year-round is a must. And, before you go rubbing on creams, it's important to confirm with a dermatologist what is actually causing the melasma. Why? Because unless you get to the bottom of the cause, it could go on existing quite happily for years. Depending on diagnosis, a dermatologist may precise oral treatment or topical to help lighten it – this might include topical retinols and retinoid treatments to help speed up the cell turnover.

Acne popped in for a visit? Break free before you break out

If the heat is bringing out the bad guys a few simple solutions may help ease the Xmas strain on the skin. Aim for . . .

• An oil-free sunscreen. Choose mineral-based sunscreens, such as zinc oxide and titanium oxide, over those that contain oil.

• Face washing minus the over washing – Cleansing your face after sweating can remove the layer of grease that clogs pores, but over washing can trigger acne – causing trauma to the skin – so avoid scrubbing too hard or too often.

• Gentle treatments – Depending on your skin type, many dermatologists will recommend changing to a light-based foaming cleanser with or without salicylic acid or alpha hydroxy acids. To minimise bacterial growth, benzoyl peroxide cleansers can also be helpful. However, before you go testing and trying, it’s important to get expert advice and guidance as some skin types are not compatible with these chemicals, leading to further irritation.

• Up the moisture – It may seem crazy to later on moisturiser when your skin is feeling overly oily, but it’s important to remember that maintaining a healthy skin barrier with good moisturizers are even more vital in the summer months – skipping the moisture can worsen problems. A top solution? Opting for a lightweight moisturiser complete with ceramides, hyaluronic acid, and niacinamide.

And before you well and truly get into the swing of summer – sweat or no sweat – check your skin in with an expert pair of hands. That way your moles, skin lesions and any potential skin issues are mapped over and examined before the celebrating gets underway – not to mention greater peace of mind heading into the holidays.