Monday 25 June 2018

Summer vs skin conditions

If you are a long-time reader the blog or know me IRL, you might know I've grown up with two skin conditions: I've had eczema all my life, and I developed acne as a teenager. Pretty much nothing good has come from either of these, save for that one time I got to present Newsbeat on Radio 1 because the story was about acne and one of the producers followed me on Twitter. However, I do feel like I have a bit of experience in keeping on top of your skin in the summer months - because as the weather changes and we crank up the air conditioning, it can wreak havoc with our bodies.

Suncream !!!! is !! so !!! important !!!!! Obviously, we all know this - but if you've got a skin condition, you don't want to be adding sunburn into the mix because it's itchy, it'll dry your skin out and can cause irritation/infection. I know that when I get burnt, my eczema flares up; so, it's important to whack on that factor 30 (or whatever is best for you) and make sure you don't burn. That being said, small doses of sunshine can work wonders for your skin. Sunlight boosts your vitamin D which is never a bad thing, and can lower cortisol levels - cortisol is the stress hormone, and I know stress makes my skin worse so if my stress levels are lower, my skin is bound to be better - right? To make sure you're safe in the sun, Tropic have a range of really great sun care options; they have three standard suncreams - Skin Shade in SPF 15, 30 & 50 - as well as some tinted SPF50 for your face and some cooling aftersun lotion. They also do a sun balm, which again is SPF50, so your skin is bound to be protected one way or another. Tropic's sun care products are all mineral, meaning they create a barrier for UV rays and there's no harmful chemicals. And they smell lush. 

Don't be tempted to sleep in your make up after a night out, even though you've spent all day drinking pink gin on a roof top terrace with your girls and you've just put your pyjamas on inside out. Even if it's just a face wipe followed by some moisturiser, do a bit of skincare or you'll hate yourself in the morning when you've got six new spots and a red patch on your forehead. Promise. Stick to your proper skincare routine as much as you can, even if you're in a rush and those steroid creams make your arms feel sticky - it'll be worth it.

Open your windows! This is important because if you get hot at night, you'll sweat more and that irritates skin conditions like eczema, and also sweat breeds more spots if you have acne. I also find being hot makes me itchy, and as I'm itchy enough I'll do anything to avoid making it worse - antihistamines help with this, too, and I take drowsy ones at night to help me sleep then non-drowsy ones in the day so I'm not sat there annoying myself and hurting my skin.

I also want to say, as the weather gets hotter and clothes get lesser, don't feel as though you have to hide your 'bad' skin. Wear those short shorts even if your thighs have dry patches, and wear that bikini even if you've got the dreaded backne. I spent so many years sweating in long sleeves because of my angry red skin and now, I'm just embracing it. Anyone who's bothered by it, or makes you feel bad about it, is clearly a dick - and the people who love you just won't care. And anyway, you're gorgeous.

So there's my advice for looking after your skin in the summer months - thanks to Tropic for sending me their Sun Care Discovery Kit, which will definitely come in handy with this expected heat wave. If you have any other boss skincare advice for summer, share it in the comments below!

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