While work-from-home setups pose their own skincare challenges, summertime (and a general lack of pandemic-approved activities) hopefully has more southerners stepping outdoors and away from their laptops. And though Texas air and increase in vitamin D is certainly good for the soul, the same can’t always be said for your skin.
To ensure you’re putting your best face forward in the great outdoors, we checked in with celebrity-approved esthetician and avid hiker Renée Rouleau for some of the sought after Austin facialist’s best summer skin tips.
PC: What are a few moisturizer must-haves you recommend for the Texas summer heat?
Renée Rouleau: The higher humidity levels that accompany warm, summer weather allow your skin to retain more of its natural oils. This means you don’t need to be adding as much oil into your skincare routine in the summer. That being said, your skin cells always need water regardless of your skin type, and summertime is no exception. In fact, water can evaporate with heat, leaving you feeling tight and dehydrated. A light, oil-free moisturizer is a great moisturizer for summer, especially if you have oily skin. Try my Skin Recovery Lotion as it gives highly sensitive, acne-prone skin the oil-free moisture it needs without clogging the pores or causing breakouts. Or, my Daily Mattifying Solution is a lightweight gel moisturizer and mattifying primer for oily skin types which helps clear irritation and reduce excess shine and breakouts. This will give your skin an infusion of water and keep it looking plump and feeling good. Using a lighter moisturizer in the morning will also help foundation makeup and sunscreen to stay put longer throughout the day. Some of the oils in heavier moisturizers can actually start to dissolve these products.
Toner feels especially important in the summer. What ingredients should we look for?
My Moisture Infusion Toner is an amazing serum-infused skin toner formulated with natural botanicals to soothe and bring moisturizing comfort to sensitive skin. Formulated with essential vitamins and omega 3, 6 and 9, this will instantly calm and correct signs of redness, rosacea, and irritation while leaving a silky coat of moisture to elevate hydration levels deep within the intercellular matrix.
The Rapid Response Detox Toner is a multi-action treatment that interrupts breakouts in their early stages by instantly reducing surface bacteria on the skin. This toner also helps skin recover more quickly from blemishes. AHA and BHA exfoliants help limit blackhead formation, clear clogged pores and lift away discoloration. The addition of a soothing, prebiotic sugar helps balance the skin’s microbiome, encouraging a healthy ecosystem where “bad” bacteria won’t thrive.
How often should we be exfoliating?
For most skin types, I do not recommend using a leave-on exfoliator or a facial scrub on a daily basis. Sometimes those with thicker, oilier and acne-prone skin can withstand daily exfoliation for a while until things clear up. Regardless, you’ll never get the best results by giving your skin the same thing day in and day out. Your skin’s integrity thrives off of a variety of performance ingredients.
Use an exfoliant no more than five times a week. When it comes to making recommendations for the skin, it’s always hard to generalize for all skin types but for most, four or five times a week is plenty. Whether that’s in the form of a facial scrub, serum, mask or whatever, you’ll want to stay within this range.
Do you need to wear sunscreen all day even if today’s current conditions are keeping you predominately indoors?
My number one rule is to always apply sunscreen daily. At any point from sunrise to sunset, the sun gives off daylight. Even if it’s pouring rain, snowing or cloudy, daylight can still be found. If you work inside and can see through any windows to the outside world, then daylight is absolutely coming in and seeing you — and your precious skin. My Weightless Protection SPF 30 is great as it acts as a two-in-one sunscreen moisturizer that can be used as a daily moisturizer under makeup. It’s lightweight and completely greaseless, making it ideal for those who suffer from clogged pores, blackheads, and blemishes.
How do you feel about face mists?
I’m not a fan of traditional face mists because most of them are water-based and will cause TEWL [transepidermal water loss], just like splashing your face with tap water. Remember, water acts as a magnet for the surrounding air and will be pulled out of your skin if you don’t seal it in.
If you’re misting your skin with a toner, I really like the Moisture Infusion Toner for this reason. It includes ingredients such as black cumin and raspberry seed oils, B3 (niacinamide), and sodium hyaluronate, the largest form of hyaluronic acid. These ingredients all help prevent TEWL to keep your skin happy and hydrated. Of course, these days, skincare products are becoming more sophisticated, so you can certainly find face mists on the market that are specifically created to prevent moisture from evaporating out of your skin.
Any expert tricks or hacks for keeping skin protected?
Reapply sunscreen throughout the day. It’s no secret that summer equals sun, and this means it’s more important than ever that your skincare routine includes diligent sunscreen application. Excess sun exposure can lead to DNA damage, resulting in wrinkles and sagging skin later on. It can also trigger melanin cells and cause them to become overactive, which is what leads to brown spots, hyperpigmentation, freckles, and, in some cases, melasma. While a good application of a lotion sunscreen in the morning should always be the cornerstone of your skincare routine in the summer, you need to be re-applying sunscreen throughout the day as well to stay protected from strong UV rays.
You can find Renée’s line of skincare products for purchase at reneerouleau.com.