Having the opportunity to experience four seasons in a year is a blessing, but changing weather conditions means we also need to adapt. It’s a small price to pay, but as winter turns to spring, and spring turns to summer, our fashion and beauty routines encounter an array of issues.
Remember when all the coconut oil in the world couldn’t keep our hair and skin moisturized during the dry winter months? Or when the awful salt stains constantly ruined our favourite boots? Well, now that those days are over. But they’ve been replaced with a whole new set of annoying hot weather problems.
Luckily, we’re here to address some of those pesky summer specific issues and provide easy solutions.
Problem: Frizzy hair
Hello, frizzy hair! There isn’t a girl in the world who hasn’t cursed humidity after leaving the house with sleek straight locks and returning home only to find they look like a poodle.
Fighting frizz can seem hopeless but there are steps you can take to minimize poodle head, starting with the right products. Use products specifically aimed at preventing frizz like Living Proof’s No Frizz hair-care line.
After washing your hair, ensure every strand is dry — whether you are blow-drying or air-drying. Any damp pieces will just attract humidity when you go out. A key step in preventing frizz is allowing your hair to cool after styling. Setting your hair by using the cool shot button on your dryer could make all the difference. Follow that up with a good anti-frizz hairspray.
Problem: Smelly Shoes
Let's imagine that your summer shoes were in competition with your winter footwear to see who smelled the worst. I can guarantee your summer shoes would win in a landslide. Sweat, heat and confined spaces are ideal conditions for bacteria to flourish. Basically, your flats stink because it’s a mini cesspool that you put your feet in.
You can combat the smell by minimizing bacteria. Wash your feet with a mixture of baking soda and warm water. Give your tootsies a thorough scrub to remove dead skin and sprinkle cornstarch on your feet before slipping on your shoes.
Other remedies for keeping your shoes fresh includes adding a few drops of tea tree oil into the soles, utilizing black tea bags and even cat litter will work as a makeshift deodorizer. Wash your shoes periodically, if possible, with baking soda, hydrogen peroxide and warm water. You’ll get rid of stains and stench with this handy solution.
If all else fails, replace the insole entirely as that’s where most of the bacteria live.
Problem: Sweaty Armpits
The most visible and embarrassing fashion woe is the good ol' armpit stain. Anyone who has ever worn a light grey T-shirt on a hot day will attest to this.
You can prevent sweat stains by switching from deodorant to antiperspirant, which doesn’t just cover up odour but prevents it from happening. Wearing loose clothing made of breathable fabrics like linen will help, as will using underarm shields and dress shields.
If you sweat more than the average person, you might have hyperhidrosis, in which case, a visit to the doctor for a stronger solution is recommended.
Problem: Melting Makeup
My sister used to call me raccoon eyes before I discovered the power of primer.
Primer is an annoying extra step but worth it if you want your makeup to stay put. Invest in a primer with SPF and one specifically for your lids to prevent transferring and smudging.
If possible, keep a separate makeup stash for summer and winter. It’s a good idea to switch to sweat-proof and waterproof makeup and opt for cream-based products as opposed to powder when humidity is a factor.
Blotting tissues are crucial if you sweat a lot and hate shine.
Problem: Keeping linen clothing wrinkle free
Linen is an optimal summer fabric for obvious reasons. It’s a natural fibre, so it will wrinkle at the slightest bend. Unfortunately, there’s no real way to remove wrinkles when you’re out unless you tote around a portable steamer or refuse to bend your legs.
Since very few people are that high maintenance, the solution should start when you’re shopping. Avoid pure linen items in favour of linen blends that will be far more resistant to creasing.
Problem: Getting stains out of white clothing
'Tis the season for white clothing, which means you’ll be dealing with a lot of stains. Stains on white clothing can be nightmarish but the likelihood of getting them out is best if you attack right away.
Treat the area with a stain remover like OxiClean and let it marinate. You can also let the item soak in a solution of dishwashing detergent and hydrogen peroxide. Once the stain is loosened, add a dash of white vinegar to your washing machine, along with detergent and launder as normal. The mild acidity in the vinegar will revive your whites and make them more crisp and brighter than ever.
Problem: Slippery Feet
When your sweaty feet start sliding around in your shoe, it's the worst.
It's an easy fix. Your local drugstore or Walmart will have cushions meant for the balls of your feet. Just insert as instructed and your problem is effectively solved.
Cornstarch is also great for absorbing sweat, so if this is a real problem for you, sprinkle some on your feet before you put on your shoes.
Problem: Even out tan lines
So you bought a really cool one piece with all those fancy cutouts, but now you have embarrassing awkward tan lines. Womp.
One of the best ways to even out your tan is to slough off dead skin by exfoliating regularly. Lemon is a good natural exfoliant, so mix lemon juice with sugar or honey and leave it on the undesired tan lines for about half an hour. Black tea has also been known to help fade tan lines. Add ice black tea to a spray bottle and spritz directly on your tan lines.
If you’re going out and need more immediate results, use a little bit of self-tanner on the areas that need some work.
Sunburn is one of the most common skin problems we encounter in the summer. It’s painful, unsightly and a magnet for people to make unnecessary comments when you’re already quite aware of what you look like.
Sunscreen is the best way to mitigate burns but accidents do happen. The inflammation won’t go away right away, but the right course of action will help you get back to normal ASAP.
Place a cold compress on the burn to start. A bag of frozen peas will do the job. Keep the affected area moisturized and follow that up by applying aloe vera or a cortisone cream that will help tone down the redness. Drink a load of water and if the burn gets progressively worse, consult a doctor.
Problem: Keeping your clothing in place
There’s far more potential for wardrobe malfunctions in the summer than in the winter. The nature of summer clothing usually means less coverage, skimpy straps or no straps at all.
Top stick, double-sided tape or boob tape will save you in most precarious clothing-related scenarios. Chicken cutlets or adhesive silicone bras are also extremely handy for tricky backless outfits.