There are probably a hundred songs (at least) dedicated to the joys of summer, The warm breeze, picnics and sandy beaches, summer flings. The list goes on and on, but I dare you to name one song about the reality of summer. The sweat spots under your breasts, bug bites, sun burns, lizard skin, and melting makeup. These are the facts of summer that never gets discussed, or even want to be discussed. But I'm going to discuss the, because that's what I do. Consider this a summer refresher course, and maybe you'll learn a new trick or two. For easy reading I have divided each topic up and bolded the title, so you can find the specific topics that concern or interest you
The big thing everybody always talks about during the summer season is sunscreen, for obvious reasons. Skin cancer is a pretty serious topic, did you know melanoma accounts for almost half of the cancer cases in the United States? Most Doctors recommend wearing a sunscreen with a minimum of SPF 15 whenever you go out in the sun. The sun's harmful effects don't go away just because its cold outside. More and more foundations and BB Creams come with built in SPF, so it is becoming easier to protect yourselves. But ears, necks (especially the back of the neck), and any other exposed skin also needs to be covered.
Did you know that UV rays can also damage your hair? The dry, crunchy hair you experience during the summer isn't just from extra time in the pool. The heat will dry it out while the UV rays will fry it. Think of it as a sunburn on your hair. Wearing a hat obviously protects your hair and face from the sun, but sometimes a hat just isn't in the picture. There are plenty of spray treatments for hair that protect against heat and UV damage. My particular spray of choice is the Beauty Protector Protect and Detangle Spray, it is specially formulated to provide the sort of protection your hair needs during the summer.
And to round out the UV/sun damage discussion, let's chat about eyes for a second. Just like how the sun damages your skin and hair, it can also damage the sensitive cells in your eyes. Best case scenario you get dry red eyes and need eye drops one day, worst case is cancer or permanent vision damage. Make sure your sunglasses are both UVA and UBA protected, and if you wear regular glasses like I do inquire about getting a protective filter put on. The place I got my last pair offered this as a free add on.
Please excuse the creepy sounding header, I literally could not think of another way to phrase that. And now I'm going to use an equally creepy analogy, because that's how I roll today I guess. If you stick a chicken breast into the oven and you leave it in to long, it gets dried out. Dry chicken is nasty, and nobody likes lit. Think of your body as that hunk of chicken and the heat/sun as the oven. You stay in it to long and you get dried out (or burned, but we'll get to that in a second), but unlike the chicken there is hope for you. I highly doubt any of you need to be told to drink more water and put lotion on dry skin, so I won't waste time writing about that. I just want to talk about some of the interesting products out there to help you moisturize your skin. Slather on lotion is not always appealing and can be time consuming, but spraying some on it not only quick but cool and refreshing. Vaseline makes a body lotion spray that I've heard nothing but good things about, and there are lots of face spritzers on the market. Evian makes one, Avene makes one, my personal favorite is the Complexion Quenching Facial Mist by Air Repair. I've talked about it before but this product is really designed to help sun dried and damaged skin.
Feeling the Burn
Accidents happen, or maybe you just burn really easy like my husband. But at one point or another you are going to deal with a sun burn. There are three categories of burns, 1st degree, 2nd degree, and 3rd degree. 1st degree burns are the burns we typically associate with sunburns, a nice red burn that is warm to the touch and varying level of painful. These don't need to be seen by a medical professional typically, unless it is on a sensitive area (hello nude sun bathing) or very large. These can be treated with aloe vera gel (find some with lidocaine in it and keep it in the fridge, you'll thank me later) and some OTC pain pills. 2nd degree burns are when the area is burnt and has begun to blister and possibly swell. These are incredibly painful and may require medical attention. If it is a small area you can typically treat the same as a first degree burn, but if you're talking full back burn and blisters then you should probably seek medical advice instead of listening to a blogger on the Internet. 3rd degree burns are what happen to that chicken if you continued to leave it in the oven. These require medical attention immediately, and are very serious. The burn has gone completely past the skin, this is not something you can treat at home. Those shipwreck victims found after a week at sea who look like someone set fire to them, that's a 3rd degree burn caused by the sun. It happens, so please pay attention and be careful.
I'm going to end this topic here, but I'll pick it back up tomorrow with melting makeup, the great outdoors strikes back, and the products I cannot live without during the summer. If there is a topic or a question you'd like me to cover please let me know down below in the comments and I will do my best to answer it.