07/07/2014 09:01 EDT | Updated 09/06/2014 05:59 EDT

Top Tips for Gorgeous Summer Skin

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I was at a hair salon a few weeks ago and overheard the woman next to me sharing with her stylist that she rarely washes her face before she goes to sleep. The lady continued to say that at the end of the day, she is so tired she can't even think about washing her face. Secretly, I was thinking how unpleasant that was, but I must confess, I have done it in the past too.

In my 20s (usually after a night of partying) I would occasionally fall asleep with a full face of makeup. However, as the years have progressed, my need for a squeaky clean face has become important to me.

In the summer, I can get almost fanatical about my skin care. Between the sweat, sun and activities of the hot summer months, I feel even more compelled to take care of my mature skin.

Recently, I spoke with Holly Sherrard the Education Manager for Dermalogica Canada. Holly shared with me her top tips for amazing summer skin. We discussed the first and essential step in skincare, washing the face.

Tops Tips For Cleansing The Skin

Holly shared, "We did an internal survey of how long the average person takes to cleanse their skin and it was about 20 seconds, for men even less at 13 seconds. In order to clean the skin thoroughly we need at least 60 seconds which is three times as long as the average."

A plant-oil based cleanser works great for the first cleanse and once the surface dirt and debris is removed, follow up with a skin condition specific cleanser. To put it simply, cleanse the skin twice in the morning and evening and sing your ABCs while doing it.

Don't scrub the skin, instead use a soft cloth and gentle, upward circular motions. Don't forget to cleanse all the way up to the hairline and under the jaw.

Find The Right Cleanser For Your Skin Type

Skin types and conditions have different needs and cleansing is the first step to controlling challenges that may arise. Dry or alipoid skin lacks oil therefore a person would need to use a creamy cleanser with ingredients such as safflower oil.

Normal or combination skin has slightly more oil production so a gel-based cleanser will gently clean without disturbing the skin's natural moisture balance. Acneic skins can use a gel-based cleanser with ingredients such as salicylic acid and Echinacea to minimize bacteria and calm inflammation.

Use An Eye Makeup Cleanser

People who wear heavy makeup should use a specific eye makeup remover. They are formulated to remove the dirt thoroughly but still maintain the integrity of the delicate eye tissue.

For people who prefer the natural look, make sure the cleanser is gentle enough for eyes. Some gel-based cleansers for normal skin or ones formulated for sensitive skin can be used around the eyes, but always check with your skin therapist or the manufacturer.

Your skin recovers and heals at night, so make sure to prep the skin before going to bed by cleansing, moisturizing and applying serums to suit the skin condition.

How to Cleanse Your Skin In The Summer

It is important to keep the skin hydrated and protected during the summer months to cut down on conditions like breakouts. Over-cleansing can result in dehydration and increased breakouts.

If you have oily, breakout-prone skin, keep wipes in your gym bag for a quick post workout cleanse. Make sure to finish off with toner to hydrate and use an oil-controlling SPF plus moisturizer to protect.

Top Tips To Protect Your Skin In The Summer

Sun Protection Factor (SPF) must be worn year round to reduce the aging and cancer-causing effects from the sun. Health Canada recommends one ounce or a shot glass of minimum SPF 15 to protect the face and neck.

If that amounts seems daunting, layer the protection. First use a moisturizer plus SPF, then apply a primer with SPF second, and to finish add a cover tint or foundation with SPF.

How To Avoid Toxic Skincare Ingredients

The number one ingredient to avoid is artificial fragrance. It is the number one cause of contact dermatitis and can react with the sun and cause pigmentation. Look for ingredients like Vitamin C and E which are antioxidants that help control damage caused by free radicals such as the sun's rays.

You are invited to share your experiences in the comments section below and if you have a question, I will do my best to get an expert answer for you.

Keep your eye on my blog, as I continue to look for ways to help you feel and look your best.


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