How Does Summer Affect Your Skin? We Asked a Dermatologist to Find Out

With summer in full swing, chances are that you're thinking about splashing in the pool and soaking up the sun, and not about the health of your skin.

But just because it's not top of mind doesn't mean it's not super important. In fact, summer can be one of the most damaging times of year for your skin, and if you don't take care of it now, you just might have to pay the price later. We were curious about how the dry, hot season affects our skin, and we turned to an expert to find out.

Board-certified dermatologist Dr. Marina Peredo is also the founder of Skinfluence NYC, and she's an authority on all things skin. We got to ask her our most pressing questions, and she told us how to keep our skin safe and healthy all summer long.

Sweety High: In what unique ways does the summer weather, or just being outdoors more often during the season, damage our skin?

Dr. Marina Peredo: As the weather gets warmer, our skin starts to adjust to the new environment. The combination of both heat and humidity can trigger oil levels on the surface of the skin. Our skin naturally produces oil to keep our skin soft and hydrated, but when an excess amount is produced and mixed with sweat, it can lead to clogged pores, resulting in breakouts. Additionally, we are spending more time outdoors in the summer, and our skin is exposed to the sun much more than it is in the winter. Unprotected exposure to UV rays can damage your skin's barrier and can result in a sunburn or lead to premature aging and eventually create serious consequences. Studies have shown that bad sunburns before the age of 18 can double your risk of malignant melanoma. If you're going to use one product during the summer, it should be sunblock and you should reapply every so often.

Shutterstock: Young woman in sunglasses holding bottle of sunscreen lotion, spraying sunblock cream on shoulder before tanning

(via Shutterstock)


SH: For teen girls in particular, what types of skincare treatments do you recommend for the summer? What do each of these treatments do, and why is the summer the perfect time to book them?

MP: HydraFacial is a great treatment for teen girls because it prevents oily skin, acne and acne scarring. It is a great introduction to facials. It exfoliates, gets rid of clogged pores and helps uneven pigmentation. It is no problem to do this treatment in the summer because it is okay to be in the sun afterward. The Clear & Brilliant treatment is also a great treatment. It is stronger than a HydraFacial, but will still address large pores, uneven skin and acne scarring.


SH: What at-home products do you recommend for teens for healthy, glowing skin in the summer?

MP: I recommend using Skinfluence's Alpha Cleanser. It is refreshing with papaya enzymes and salicylic acid to gently exfoliate and cleanse the skin of makeup and impurities. Neutrogena's Oil-Free Acne Wash is another great cleanser because it has salicylic acid in it and helps fight acne.

I also recommend Skinfluence's 2-2 Glycolic Acid Pads. It is a great astringent and helps remove dead skin cells that contribute to oily skin. For moisturizer, teens should look for one that has vitamin C to get healthy, glowing skin. I love Skinfluence's Advanced Vitamin C Brightening Booster because it moisturizes and helps protect against free radicals.

One of my favorite products is PrimaSkin. PrimaSkin is one of my favorite toners/mists because of the innovation of its nanotechnology and is formulated with glutathione, which is one of the best antioxidants and is great for anti-inflammatory purposes. It also can help with a sunburn as well.

As it is summer, sunscreen is a crucial at-home product. For the body, I recommend Alastin's Broad Spectrum SPF 30+ Sunscreen. It is light and moisturizing but also provides broad-spectrum protection. Cucumber and aloe leaf extract calm the skin and it is water-resistant, gluten-free, paraben-free and cruelty-free. I recommend applying every two hours. For the face, I use Alastin's HydraTint Pro Mineral Broad Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 36. It evens and brightens the skin with a universal tint. It's lightweight, provides broad-spectrum protection and is oil-free and fragrance-free.

Shutterstock: Beautiful Young woman with sun cream on face. Girl holding sunscreen bottle on the beach. Female in hat applying moisturizing lotion on skin.Skin care. Sun protection. Suntan

(via Shutterstock)


SH: What are the most important reasons teens should start taking care of their skin early? Why does healthy skin matter?

MP: It is important to start taking care of the skin early to extend the longevity of its vibrant, youthful appearance. Incorporating a daily skincare routine can help prevent possible issues in the future such as acne, aging, and maintain overall skin health. The skin is our body's largest organ and protects us from viruses and bacteria you can be exposed to on a daily basis. Taking care of your skin is beneficial for your overall wellbeing and the prevention of diseases.

Shutterstock: model woman posing in wild forest applying serum, stands surrounded by plants, using organic cosmetics. skin care, spa concept

(via Shutterstock)


Curious about the benefits of vitamin C for skin? Click HERE to learn more about our favorite vitamin C products to add to your skin routine.