Summer is here and the time to enjoy SA's great outdoors. But while you're having fun in the sun, your hair and skin will be needing a little extra TLC. Here are some easy ideas to help you look and feel great.
The fuss about SPF
SPF helps prevent against dry skin, sunburn and ultimately skin cancer. But heat can make normal skin particularly sensitive which could be aggravated by SPF. Look for natural and non-irritating UVA/UVB filters like titanium dioxide or zinc oxide. If your skin turns oily in the summer, skip the SPF moisturizer for a super light serum and cover your skin with an all-natural mineral powder with titanium dioxide or zinc oxide for a smooth, matte finish. Mineral powder is a great alternative to thick SPF moisturizers and provides as good, if not better, coverage when it comes to sun rays.
Hero products for the heat
- Aloe vera gel - for taking care of sunburn and nourishing the skin.
- A bottle of water - filtered water in glass or BPA-free plastic, or a bottle fitted with its own filter for on-the-go filling. For flavoured water, freeze cubes of fruit like strawberries or grapes.
- Coconut oil - use it to coat your hair to prevent dryness, to nourish your skin and to treat sunburn.
Cooling, cleansing & moisturizing
- Face-spritzer: fill a small spritzer bottle with filtered water and a few drops of your favourite essential oil. Lavender or rose water will keep you cool and smelling fresh at the same time.
- Rosewater, olive oil or coconut oil can cleanse without stripping the skin of natural oils.
- Cucumber blended into a paste it can be used as a cleanser or to treat sunburn. To remove tough make-up, add a bit of milk or olive oil.
- The beauty power of milk was known to royal women thousands of years ago - use it on the skin for hydration. Add a tablespoon of almond oil for removing make-up.
- Yoghurt can be used as a moisturizer and for relieving sunburn.
- For shiny, luscious locks blend a tablespoon of banana, avocado and olive oil (2 tsps). Blend together and massage onto your hair from roots to tips. Leave for 30 minutes. Shampoo well, rinse with apple cider vinegar and cool water.
- For glowing, hydrated skin use a mixture 1/2 an avo, 1tbsp of honey and 1 tsp of apple cider vinegar. Blend together, apply to face and leave for 15 minutes.
- Dip an eyeliner brush lightly in activated charcoal and apply as eyeliner.
- Hibiscus cheek stain: pour half a tablespoon of boiling water over two teaspoons of dried hibiscus. Stir and allow to steep until dark pink. Using a cotton ball, press the liquid onto your cheeks for a perfectly pretty rosy hue.
- Create homemade bronzing powder with a blend of 1 tbsp cinnamon, 1 tbsp nutmeg, 1 tbsp cocoa powder, and 2 tsp cornstarch or powdered sugar. Keep in a small jar with a lid. Adjust the mixture to suit your skin tone.
- Argan oil for anti-ageing, smoothing and even-toned skin, look out for hair, body and face ranges.
4 steps to a natural-looking, sun-kissed look
- Choose a bronzer that's similar to the colour of your chest and arms. The goal is to create a seamless transition between your face and the rest of your body.
- Using a bronzer brush apply the powder where the sun normally hits your face (forehead, cheeks, nose and chin).
- Finish with a light dusting on your neck and ears.
- Check the sides of your face to make sure the bronzer is well-blended.
Don't leave home without these handbag essentials:
Some basic make-up: The goal is to glow, not glisten. All you need is a lipstick, gloss or lip balm with SPF, oil-absorbing papers or powder to handle the shine, water-proof mascara to avoid leaving the water with panda-eyes, and a bronzer to fake being kissed by the sun in all the right places.
Protective goodies: SPF - apply before getting dressed and don't forget your decolletage, ears, back of your hands and back of your neck. Sunglasses with good quality lenses will guard those baby blues from the harsh sun and keep fine lines at bay. A hat will prevent sunburn and keep hair off your skin which could result in break-outs.
Did you know? Skin cells that are strengthened and nourished internally with real food and water will benefit from interacting with the sun. Well-nourished skin responds better to sunlight, and sun-ripened food is more nutritious.