The sun is finally shining here in New York, and I’m ready to switch up both my wardrobe and beauty routine to better suit the rising temperatures. Unfortunately, this means dealing with my worst enemy—oily skin. It’s a daily battle to fight off that inevitable shine, which also means trying to prevent additional acne flare-ups. Who needs that when all I want is to be fresh-faced and bare-shouldered?
With that in mind, I came up with a few battle-tested tricks that have kept my complexion clear in warmer weather. Here are my five favorite tips for keeping breakouts at bay in the spring.
1. Spot treat current blemishes
You’re likely opting for a sheerer foundation or BB cream now that winter is over. To let your bright complexion really shine through, tend to any errant spots with a targeted treatment so you don’t irritate the rest of your face. My favorite lightweight product for this is Evologie Intensive Blemish Serum, which zaps zits with salicylic acid, natural antiseptic tea tree oil, and a punch of willow bark to calm down inflammation.
2. Pull your hair away from your face
If you’re anything like me, you probably use a small arsenal of products to keep your hair frizz-free, voluminous and healthy. Unfortunately, when you sweat, small amounts of these formulas, and natural sebum from your scalp, can be transferred from strands to skin and cause breakouts—particularly on your forehead. So on extra warm days, keep hair up and out of your face with a cute headband to prevent any product-caused blemishes. If you’re worried about looking like you just left the gym, try the ever-popular princess roll or one ofthese three stylish looks.
3. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!
It’s important to drink plenty of water all-year long, but once the days get warmer and you’re spending more time outside, it’s especially necessary. When you’re dehydrated, acne-causing toxins can build up and your skin can become dull and dry. Aim for eight to ten glasses of water daily to keep your skin healthy and glowing. I know that seems like a lot, but you should be drinking water all day and not only when you feel thirsty. If you need to add a little flavor, drop a few lemon or cucumber slices into your cup.
4. Relieve some stress and work out
Staying relaxed is one of the simplest, but most often overlooked, ways to reduce acne flareups. When you’re stressed, your body releases Cortisol (“the stress hormone”), which increases oil production and clogs pores. So relax and go for a run along the water or join a co-ed pickup game of soccer in the park. Just be sure to properly clean your face after! When I don’t have access to a sink, I love using a fresh citrus-scented towelette from Herban Essentials to wipe off sweat and grime.
5. Moisturize and protect
SPF is a must for every skin type, whether blemish-cursed or otherwise. Excessive sun exposure can aggravate skin and can lead not only to sun damage, but more zits as well. You might also be tempted to skip the moisturizer since you’ll feel oilier than usual, but that can kick your pores into oil-production overdrive. Instead, try a combination moisturizer and sunscreen specifically geared toward reducing breakouts for us sensitive types.