Winter to Spring: Making the Beauty Switchover

By March 14, 2011 5 Comments

Winter to Spring: Making the Beauty Switchover

Spring is in the air! Can’t you FINALLY feel it? With daylight saving’s time – my personal favorite time of year – Spring is actually a reality.

To celebrate this milestone, we asked Dr. Heidi Waldorf, Director of Laser and Cosmetic Dermatology at Mount Sinai, to answer our questions on turning winter skincare into spring skincare, tanning concerns, and the must have products for the switchover.

Here are her exclusive tips:

What is the best prep for spring skin?

Get your skin barrier back in shape after the cold dry winter.  Use a gentle cleanser and moisturize to keep the skin flexible and the barrier intact.  Gently exfoliate to remove excess scale using a brush like the Clarisonic or the new Olay product or a gentle scrub like resurfastic face.

What is the best SPF that you would recommend? Number? Brand? How high should it be to protect against sun?

SPF should be at least a 30 for outdoor days but remember that the SPF only measures protection against ultraviolet b (uvb), the burning rays.  For protection against ultraviolet a (uva), the aging rays, look in the active ingredients for zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, avobenzone and/or mexoryl.  Apply daily to any skin that may be exposed during the day and reapply every one to two hours while outdoors and after swimming or sweating.  Some good brands are:  Blue Lizard, Anthelios and Neutrogena.

What are legitimate tanning alternatives moving from the harsh winter into spring?

The only legitimate tan is a sunless tan – it can be a spray, lotion or gel.  One of the easiest ways to ‘tan’ is to use a moisturizer containing some self tanner.  It is easier to apply without streaking and builds color gradually.  Ultraviolet tanning is dangerous indoors and out!

What should one change from their winter to spring beauty routine?

As the weather becomes warmer and the air more humid, switch moisturizing formulas from heavy creams to lighter lotions.  Patients who get irritation from aha’s and retinoids during the winter usually tolerate those products better in the spring and can increase frequency.  And be sure that your body moisturizer contains sun protection as you start to wear short sleeves and shorts.

What services should one have done to prepare for spring?

To remove dull dry skin, professional microdermabrasion or light chemical peels in your dermatologist’s office can add luster.  If you were planning to have laser to remove brown spots or if hyperpigmentation is a problem for you, do those procedures before it starts to get sunny.  For anyone with medium or darker toned skin, even a small amount of ultraviolet exposure can make a laser or peeling procedure heal with lighter or darker pigmentation.

What are the 5 must-have skin care products for spring?

A good sunblock-moisturizer; a waterproof sunblock; antioxidant lotion or serum (works synergistically with your sunblock); a retinoid for night time use; a sun protecting lip gloss…. for over 5, add a gentle exfoliant like the resurfastic face and a gentle cleanser.

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