In winter, skin can easily turn dry and painfully crack. There are many reasons for this (low humidity with varying air temperatures and longer, hotter showers in winter, to name a couple). But when the cold dissipates and warmer days arrive, simply jumping outdoors without prepping your skin first can create dermatological problems to suffer through later. In summer there are many new natural elements to consider that affect the skin. Aside from the heat and increased sun exposure, your skin will probably also be subjected to different elements and products (mainly creams and sunscreens) it's not exposed to in your best wool sweater. Even going into a chlorine-filled swimming pool can cause your skin anguish.
According to experts, preparing one’s skin for summer means more beauty, comfort, and overall health. I own a vegan and natural soap shop in New York, and am constantly discovering new natural skin DIYs and pushing them on my family and friends to try. This article will feature four of my successes on how to prepare the skin for summer using only basic and natural ingredients.
1. Lavender Cleanser
As mentioned, cold weather makes the skin dry, and typical commercial cleaning products tend to only make it worse. This DIY is wonderful in that it was specifically designed to aid in attaining moisture while still cleaning the skin. It holds a slight exfoliating feature, but is gentle enough for the face.
- In a mason jar, mix 3 tablespoons of raw coconut oil, 1 teaspoon of honey (leave out if making a vegan cleanser as I do), one teaspoon of baking soda, and 5 drops of lavender essential oil.
- Stir until all the ingredients are mixed and use on a wet face. After the cleanse, wipe off with a warm towel.
2. Lemon Exfoliator
This is a lovely whole-body exfoliant with a refreshing smell to really wake one up in the morning! Lemon is wonderful for transitioning skin from winter to summer because it works both as a natural healer and a skin protector! This scrub is best when used in the shower, but try to avoid getting water in the mixture.
- In a jar, mix ¾ cup of natural cane sugar, ½ cup of oil (grape seed or sweet almond oil work best, but you can also use olive oil), and 5 drops of lemon essential oil.
3. Avocado, Olive Oil, and Aloe Vera Mask
Nothing screams moisturization greater than the combination of avocado and olive oil, and with the addition of aloe vera, this mask continues to heal the skin even after it has been washed away. Feel free to put it all over (including arms and legs) both as a means to prep the skin for summer heat and to create a glow unmatched by store-bought goods!
- To create the mask, crush half of an avocado and mix it with a teaspoon of olive oil, and a teaspoon of aloe vera. Stir into a paste-like consistency.
- Place on skin and allow to dry.
4. Peppermint Hair Rinse
When people think of preparing the skin for summer, they often think only of their face, arms, and legs, yet the scalp is also affected by changing weather conditions! Why not wash away issues like dandruff and itching and refresh your hair at the same time?
- To make the rinse, mix 1 teaspoon of carrot juice with a single cup of warm water. Next, add 7-10 drops of peppermint essential oil.
- After cleaning and conditioning the hair as usual, towel dry the hair so it's damp from the roots to the ends. Over a sink or tub, apply the rinse to your head with focus on the hair roots, and let sit for 30 minutes before a thorough rinse.