Predicting the British weather is just about as unlikely as picking the winning lottery numbers. From blustery winds, rainy days and sunny Sundays, it’s almost impossible to dress correctly for the seasons outside, without being caught short.
But what if someone told you the same goes for your skin? We’re often told how to prepare our skin for summer, how to protect it in harsh winds and colder climates and we’re always encouraged to follow a full-proof skincare routine for the changing seasons.
So, what happens in unpredictable weather? What if you can’t guarantee the sun will shine all day long as you attempt to decide which regime to default to before a busy commute.
International facialist and skincare expert for beauty-tech powerhouse FOREO, Abigail James, lends her tops tips for managing a simple skincare routine which covers all the bases, whatever the weather.
What are the best all year-round skincare routine ingredients to have on your shelf?
The best all year-round skincare ingredients are hydrating actives such as hyaluronic acid, ceramides and plant-based oils for nourishment. Antioxidants are an all-year round essential, for protection and brightening. Vitamin C is well known to be really effective, but also some plants have high antioxidant benefits such as açai berries and green tea.
These ingredients can be found in FOREO’s Farm to Face masking collection, which pairs exclusively with the sonic powered mask device UFO 2.* There are many plant-based ingredients, minerals and herbs which are effective and safe to use all-year round. It will depend on your skin type and concern, chamomile, aloe vera, Manuka honey are some of my personal (and natural) favourites that are suitable for all skin types including sensitive. If you’re prone to breakouts, charcoal, clays and salicylic acid are great to keep pores clear.
What are some DIY tips for keeping your skin looking healthy and hydrated during unpredictable weather?
Cleansing the skin morning and night is essential, you might consider cutting back on some acids and exfoliation, we want to keep the skin fresh, but you might be overdoing it with acids so commonly found in a lot of homecare products these days. Layer up your skin care with serums and definitely don’t skip daily moisturisers. A once weekly hydrating or treatment mask is a great way to keep on top of hydration levels and your own key concerns.
Should you wear SPF even on dreary days?
On the face, yes. Damaging UVA rays are around all year, even on dull days. These are the rays doing the ageing, so keep up with the SPF if you want to age well.
Is unpredictable weather harder to manage for particular skin types?
Sensitive skins can struggle, those prone to rosacea, pinkness, flushing, broken capillaries, and those prone to dry skin conditions. The changing temperature from outside to in, central heating, wind, rain, cold will all impact on the skin conditions above, aggravating.
Are there any particular in-salon skin treatments you would advise not having while the weather is unpredictable?
Actually no, in the colder months it’s actually a great time to get on top of some of the more active treatments purely from the fact that the skin can cool easier and quicker, you’re less likely to want to go out and more willing for some healing time in doors. Peels are amazing through the colder months, as is IPL and laser to treat pigmentation that might have cropped up over the summer. And if you are prone to redness, IPL is amazing for reducing the appearance of this, just keep the skin protected and well hydrated the following week.
What are your top product recommendations for unpredictable weather?
SPF! I love mineral SPF, it also creates a slight barrier. Ceramides, plant oils, hyaluronic, focus on the hydrating ingredients but also those that will help protect. More nourishing creams and oils if your skin can tolerate it. And a great, none stripping cleanser.
Are there staple ingredients that you should incorporate into your skincare regime regardless of the weather?
To be honest all those mentioned above with the addition of retinols or vitamin A’s, but again it can be skin specific. Some skins can tolerate Vitamin C and retinols whereas others, they are just too active and using other sources of antioxidants and cell boosters is better.
How can I calm irritated skin while the weather is always changing?
Switch to a gentle cream cleanser, drop any acids and brightening ingredients out of your routine, focus on barrier restoring with oils, ceramides and hydrators. Add in a regular nourishing face mask at least once a week.