Put your best face forward this summer season

Give your vanity products a revamp

Sunscreen is a huge must in summer to protect the skin from UV damage.
Sunscreen is a huge must in summer to protect the skin from UV damage.
Image: Wire Image/ Richard Bord.

From refreshing your seasonal products to getting that vanity shelf in check, it’s time to update your arsenal for your best summer yet.

Dr Alek Nikolic, specialist in aesthetic medicine and owner of SkinMiles, shares his five key tips for transitional season skincare.

  1. Go lightweight: Consider swapping out your moisturiser during the warmer season. An insider tip is to try switching to a lightweight moisturiser to keep your skin hydrated in summer without overloading it.
  2. Glow resurfacing: Turn to gentle exfoliation in your routine for a summer glow and to prevent acne by opening pores, removing dead skin cells, product build-up and excess oils. Be careful not to over exfoliate and use an exfoliator once a week with gentle acids like glycolic, citric, salicylic and lactic acid.
  3. Sunscreen besties: Sunscreen is a huge must in summer to protect the skin from UV damage, so make sure to use sun creams that contain zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide. These minerals help protect your skin by reflecting all harmful UVA and UVB wavelengths.
  4. Reapply: When it comes to sunscreen, one application is never enough: at the very least, you should be re-applying every two hours, or more often after swimming, exercising, or sweating. As a rule of thumb, one teaspoon of sunscreen for each part of your body should do the trick.
  5. Protect: SPF should its own layer in your skincare routine and mixing it with other ingredients may dilute the formula. While applying a moisturiser or foundation with SPF is better than applying no protection at all, using a separate sunscreen is best.

Vanity refresh

From expired products to items never used, ditch the old and go into the new season with a revamped and reorganised summer beauty arsenal.

Out of date products

The easiest way to part with products on your cluttered vanity is to check the expiry date. You’ll be shocked to learn how many items are out of date. To be 100% sure when products are due to expire – look out for the icon of a tub with an open lid accompanied by a number and a capital M next to it e.g.: 6M, 12M, 24M, 36M on any product packaging. This indicates the number of months, from the date of opening, that the brand recommends the product will be at its optimal efficacy before it’s time to re-evaluate or sadly, consider chucking it.

Track and label

Start by categorising into out-of-date (and in the bin), nearing expiry, or "good for a while" products. Keep the "nearing expiry" products close at hand to make sure you use them up in time. To be able to quickly see and flag makeup due to expire, stick some printed labels if you have a label maker or create makeshift paper labels, either printed or written with a maker pen.

Switch to a lightweight moisturiser to keep skin hydrated in summer.
Switch to a lightweight moisturiser to keep skin hydrated in summer.
Image: Getty Images/ Rosdiana Ciaravolo.

Seasonal updates

The change from winter to summer signals the switch from richer product formulas to more lightweight, watery ones so it’s time to give thick formulas and decongestant gels the boot.  Switch to lighter, water-based formulas that will not feel heavy on the skin, cause excessive sweating or heat rashes during the hot weather.  For neat storage of your winter product kit, get a transparent container and store these products neatly together, out of the way of everyday items.

Effective storage

Many retailers are offering fun, space-maximising and innovative storage solutions at the moment. From transparent, stackable boxes to beautiful rattan baskets, you’re able to find options to suit your taste and budget. Make use of these storage items to segment products into categories i.e. face, nails, hair, legs, feet etc. to make products easier to find, and make your cupboards appear more orderly. 

The six-month test

Another easy method for clearing your vanity and updating your kit for the summer is by adopting the "six-month test". For every item you pull out, ask yourself, “Have I used this item or product in the past six months?’ If the answer is no, then it’s time for it to go! Six months allows for seasonal influences on product usage and ensures you have no "non-essential" items taking up space in your bathroom or vanity shelves. 

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