How to Manage Oily Skin in the Summer – Glow Recipe
As temperatures climb, so too does the humidity in the air. Not only is this bad news for anyone who doesn’t love spending their days with a halo of frizz around their heads, but it also spells trouble for people prone to oily skin. “During the summer, sweat, oil, and dirt build-up on the skin, and there is actually data showing that heat is associated with an increase in sebum production, which may explain why we make more oil in the summertime,” says Joshua Zeichner, MD, a board-certified dermatologist based in New York City.
In fact, according to a 2005 study, “summer was found to be the highest sebum secreting season,” meaning that your oil glands — particularly the ones in your T-Zone — go into overdrive between MDW and LDW. One theory is that your body produces more oil to help slow the evaporation of sweat, which helps keep you cooler for longer. On its own, this excess oil does little more than make your skin look slick — but, of course, when it’s combined with the bacteria in your sweat, it can lead to breakouts.
The good news: There are some pro-approved routine tweaks you can make between now and September to prevent your skin from feeling greasier than the fries at the beachfront snack bar. Keep reading to try them for yourself.
Wash. Your. Face.
This probably seems like an obvious tip, but it’s worth mentioning because of just how important it is for keeping oily skin clean. “Opt for a foaming cleanser,” says Dr. Zeichner. “Foaming cleansers are better than hydrating cleansers or micellar water, which may not be powerful enough to remove oil from the skin.”
Look for a gentle foaming cleanser, like our Blueberry Bounce Gentle Cleanser, which uses mild suds to lift away dirt and oil without stripping the skin. It’s also made with gentle alpha hydroxy acids, which help to remove buildup — plus hydrating blueberry extract and hyaluronic acid. Also an option: Slotting an oil-based cleanser beforehand to make it a double-cleanse.
Add niacinamide to your routine
Niacinamide is a do-it-all ingredient that derms love for all skin types; it offers antioxidant protection in addition to smoothing skin, fighting inflammation, and reducing redness and discoloration. It can be especially helpful for oily skin, though, thanks to the fact that it diminishes the appearance of pores and may even help curb sebum production.
Whether you use it as a serum or a highlighter (or both), our Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Dew Drops will give you your daily dose of this power-packed ingredient while also leaving your skin looking radiantly pearlescent. You can also find it in the Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Sunscreen SPF 50, where it works alongside hyaluronic acid to deliver lightweight moisture while the hybrid sunscreen filters provide protection.
Strike the perfect balance of exfoliation
Exfoliation is important for keeping your skin clear and bright, but it’s important to do it Goldilocks-style—that is, just right. Though it can be tempting to want to aggressively scrub the oil from your skin, this plan is almost guaranteed to backfire. “Overly scrubbing the skin can lead to irritation, and inflammation, ultimately making oily skin worse,” says Dr. Zeichner.
Instead, ditch the harsh scrubs for a gentle chemical exfoliant, like our Strawberry Smooth BHA + AHA Salicylic Serum. It’s made with salicylic acid, a beta-hydroxy acid that “penetrates the follicle to help remove excess oil from the skin,” says Dr. Zeichner. It’s also got AHAs, which melt away dead skin cells from the surface of your complexion in order to prevent bacteria from being trapped and breakouts from occurring.
Swap your heavy creams for lighter lotions
It’s a common misconception that those with oily skin don’t need to wear moisturizer. “Skin oil and skin hydration are separate issues — you can have oily skin, but still be lacking hydration,” says Dr. Zeichner. Skipping out on moisturizer can actually trick your skin into producing more oil, which is the complete opposite of what you want.
As important as this step is, though, the thought of layering on a thick moisturizer in 95-degree heat is nothing short of cringe-worthy, so you’ll want to choose a summer-friendly formula. “I recommend a gel moisturizer or a light lotion in the summertime,” says Dr. Zeichner. Did someone say gel moisturizer? Watermelon Glow Pink Juice Moisturizer delivers a hefty dose of skin-quenching hydration with ingredients like watermelon extract and hyaluronic acid, and is totally oil-free. It’s got a lightweight texture and a barely-there finish (plus a lovely cooling effect) that will make you forget you’re wearing anything at all.
Invest in a weekly clay mask
Once a week, give your oily skin a little extra TLC with an oil-absorbing mask. “Ingredients like clay or charcoal are super-absorbent, and helpful if you have oily skin,” says Dr. Zeichner. The Watermelon Glow Hyaluronic Clay Pore-Tight Facial combines kaolin clay with a roster of great-for-oily-skin ingredients. BHAs and enzymes melt away dead skin cells, hyaluronic acid offers weightless hydration, and blueberry seed extract delivers gentle physical exfoliation. After five minutes, your skin will be clear, decongested, and not at all dehydrated — giving you less-shiny skin from now through September.