How to Transition Your Skin Care Routine From Summer to Fall
The hot and hazy summer days are on their way out, with the frigid and dry months on their way in. Make the most of the season with a skincare routine that’s guaranteed to protect and nourish your skin – guaranteeing you a year-round glow, even in below-freezing temperatures!
Swap out your summer cleanserThat lightweight foam cleanser you’ve been using all summer might do the trick at keeping oily skin at bay during the hazy and humid months, but with frigid temperatures around the corner, you need to be looking for products that can lock-in that moisture and cleanse your skin without stripping it of those necessary protective oils.
Swap that, try this: nix foam cleansers and avoid products that contain a high acid content — salicylic acid and glycol acid are red-flag ingredients for cold-weather products, because while effective for other uses, they tend to be too harsh on the skin in colder months. Look for moisture-rich cream cleansers that will be gentle and ultra-hydrating on your skin.
Philosophy Purity Made Simple 240 mL, $32.
Resist excessive hot showersWe get it. There’s nothing more comforting than starting (or ending) your day with a long, hot shower. But while it may feel good in the moment, those long and super-hot showers aren’t doing your skin (or your hair, for that matter) any favours. The scalding water is harsh on your skin and despite what you may think, the water is not adding any moisture to your skin but instead repelling necessary natural oils.
Swap that, try this: give your skin a break and limit your hot-shower time, using gentle moisture-rich cleansing products.
Fresh Sugar Lemon Bath and Shower Gel, US$20.
Remember to pat-dry with your towel afterward – harsh rubbing with the towel can really irritate your skin.
Get into a good post-shower routineSwap this, try that: once out of the shower, skip the lightweight quick-dry creams and opt instead for a body oil. The oil will absorb into your skin throughout the day, supplying a steady stream of moisture and protection against the harsh weather. If you can’t resist a classic cream for after showers and baths, mix it up with some of the oil for the best of both worlds.
Tata Harper Revitalizing Body Oil, $144.
Remember to look for oils that won’t clog your pores — steer clear of mineral oil, primrose oil, avocado oil and almond oil.
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Layer, layer, layer — and don’t forget the SPF!Get a step ahead of cold-weather damage to your sensitive skin by protecting it against the elements and shielding it from the sun. Dressing in warm layers and avoiding bare skin on those super-frigid days will prevent unnecessary damage and exposure.
Swap this, try that: or in this case: don’t swap! Keep that summertime SPF in mind with a moisture-rich daytime cream that contains an appropriate SPF. Remember: SPF stands for “sun protection factor” and a change in season doesn’t make the sun’s rays any less harmful in the winter months.
Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream SPF30, US$128.
Keep an eye out for keywordsWhen product-hunting for the new season, keep the appropriate lingo in mind. You want products that boast things like “moisturizing” and “hydrating” because those will work to nourish and defend your skin in the harsher months ahead. Look for heavier, thicker creams and steer clear of foams and lightweight gels that just can’t handle the job in the colder season.
Swap this, try that: in place of that gel serum, look for one packed with essential oils to be used once or twice daily, after your toner and before your moisturizer.
Drunk Elephant B-Hydra™ Intensive Hydration Serum, US$52.
Gentle makeup removal is keyThere’s no denying that face wipes are an easy pick when looking for something to quickly — and effectively — remove makeup at the end of the day, but are they doing more harm than good?
Swap this, try that: what you may not realize is that many of these handy drugstore wipes are alcohol-based, which translates to parched and acne-prone skin with overuse. Forgo the wipes and try a natural oil-based remover instead, for a gentle and nourishing effect.
One Love Organics Vitamin B Enzyme Cleansing Oil + Makeup Remover, US$42.
Go easy on the anti-acne productsWe all need a little help when it comes to keeping our skin blemish and acne-free, but while the summer temperatures generate enough natural oils and moisture to guard our skin from some of the havoc that these strong topical products can wreak, our winter skin just doesn’t have the same defenses.
Swap this, try that: we’ve already mentioned the damage that glycolic acids can have on already-dry skin, and it’s important to understand that once those nasty side-effects roll in and your skin begins to flake and peel, you’re going to find yourself working overtime to help it to recover. Swap the summer-friendly anti-acne tools for effective gentler alternatives like tea tree oil.
Art Naturals Tea Tree Oil, US$18.
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Exfoliate wiselyThe change in season doesn’t eliminate your need to exfoliate that dead skin, and we wouldn’t suggest skipping this part of your skincare routine — just maybe taking a gentler approach.
Swap this, try that: remove those dead cells and make room for healthy new ones with an exfoliator treatment that has sensitive skin in mind. And never forget to give your skin a boost after treatments by applying a moisturizer to counter any damage from stripping those dead skin cells.
The Body Shop Drops of Youth™ Youth Liquid Face Peel, $25.
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Invest in a humidifierIt’s freezing outside, but warm and dry inside — and this dramatic contrast is not forgiving on your skin, especially as you sleep.
Swap this, try that: a cool misting humidifier located near your bed as you sleep will work to counter the loss of moisture from the dry indoor environment during nighttime hours, when your skin becomes the most dehydrated. For daytime hours, consider a facial mist to keep on hand while you’re on-the-go.
Province Apothecary Invigorating Toner, $18.
Masking mattersNot only is masking a relaxing way to create a spa-at-home feel, it’s also a great way to jam-pack necessary moisturizing properties into your skin with minimal time and effort. Pick a series of masks that are seasonally appropriate and boast moisturizing and nourishing benefits.
Swap this, try that: opt for gentle and hydrating masks over those that may leave your skin feeling too stiff and parched.
The Body Shop Mediterranean Almond Milk With Oats Instant Soothing Mask, $28.
Invest in cooling productsThe best way to combat redness brought on by dry skin and relieve some of that pesky irritation is with cooling products specifically designed to reduce redness caused by broken or swollen capillaries.
Glossier Moisturizing Soothing Moon Mask, $27.
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Protect that poutSo we’ve already touched on the importance of hydration, and the benefits to using a straw versus sipping directly from a glass or bottle during the colder months — but how else can you protect your lips?
Swap that, try this: it’s not enough to just apply a balm and go during the colder months. When gently exfoliating your face twice a week, use a soothing sugar scrub or similar for your lips to remove dead skin and avoid flaking or peeling. Before applying lipstick, use a primer or balm on lips to add a nourishing protective layer, and never go to bed without a quick swipe of balm or petroleum jelly.
Burt' Bees Lip Balm, $5.
Keep that glow year-roundIf laying out in the sun is a no-go (and tanning beds are so bad for you they’re not even worth mentioning) how’s a girl supposed to keep her glow going in the dreary winter months?
Swap that, try this: whether we’re talking fall and winter or spring and summer, overexposure to the sun for the purposes of baking your skin to that coveted golden hue is a major no-no. It’s just not worth the short and long-term damage. With that being said, there’s no end to the self-tanner options on the market, with something for everyone, in every shade and with every possible option of application. From foam to moisturizer, spray and even water — yes, water! — there’s a self-tanner out there with your name on it.
St.Tropez Self Tan Purity Bronzing Water Mousse, $54.
HydrateThis one’s a no-brainer, but it’s worth repeating: healthy skin comes from the inside out. Things like stress, poor diet and lack of exercise can all wreak havoc on your skin, but if there’s one thing you take away from this list, let it be hydration. Nothing can replace the benefits of proper water intake every day. Your body becomes parched from the inside out, and without a healthy internal reserve, your skin will never be able to retain the moisture you’re applying to it topically.
Swap this, try that: we love the idea of keeping a water bottle on hand for easy-access to H20, but when you sip from the bottle, the leftover water on your lips will soak up the natural oils there. This translates to flaky, chapped lips. Keep straws on hand or find a water bottle with a built-in straw to avoid quenching your thirst — but parching your pout!
S'well Pink Topaz Water Bottle, $45.
Talk to an expertEveryone’s skin needs are different, and while some products will work across the board, your best bet for flawless skin is a routine custom-crafted to your own specific needs.
Swap that, try this: we suggest finding a local dermatologist you like and getting into the habit of checking in them each season. Even if your skin doesn’t qualify as “problematic” or overly-sensitive, an expert will be able to take a deeper look and let you know if you’re on the right track — or make suggestions where you could be doing better.