At long last, summer is on its way. Sure, it may be a bit early to get excited about it, but I’m pretty sure that’s as official a national Canadian pastime as any. While I love the snow, I love the summer and all it brings much more: Hiking, camping, and basking in the sun. I also love the heat, but it can do a number on your skin if you’re not careful. In the hopes of helping the season change a little faster, here are my top tips for caring for your skin in the summer!
Use a Lighter Moisturizer
With the summer heat comes more sweat and oil, and more chances for clogging your pores. You certainly don’t want to do away with moisturizer altogether, but using a lighter product, or less of it, is vital. I use Schaf moisturizer year-round, but I use about half as much in the summer and dilute it with an equal amount of water to lighten the consistency. Crown Daily Face Moisturizer is a great choice as well.
Schaf is an excellent year-round moisturizer!
If you’ve got a beard, the same advice applies. While I tend to shave mine in the summer, a great alternative is to simply lighten up your beard products. If you’re a fan of oil, switch to Bartigan & Stark, who uses a fast-absorbing fractionated coconut oil in their products. I don’t find beard balm super necessary in the summer and way too oily for hot days, so I rely on my beard brush and beard cream to keep the frizz down. The cream hydrates and absorbs quickly, while the brush calms the mess super effectively.
Protect Your Skin from the Sun!
Needless to say, a bunch of excess UV rays aren’t great for your skin. The easiest way to avoid this damage is to cover up or keep out of the sun. For some, that’s a great solution, but I personally love soaking up some rays, and I spend a lot of time hiking, camping, and doing yard work during the summer. Anytime I go outside, I make sure to slather my pasty white skin in sunscreen, especially my face. We’ve had no luck getting our hands on moisturizers or aftershaves containing UV-blocking ingredients, but there are many great choices out there. Just grab something suited to your face to avoid clogging your pores!
Avoid Citrus at all Costs
Speaking of UV, one of the biggest culprits of sunburn is citrus! No, you’re totally fine to keep sipping daiquiris by the pool; it’s a personal favourite pastime, but avoid putting citrus on your skin. Many of us who shave have citrus-scented products we love, such as Castle Forbes Lime Shaving Cream & Aftershave. While the scents are summer appropriate, the ingredients are not: citrus oils greatly intensify UV rays and can massively increase damage from long-term sun exposure.
Taylor Grapefruit & Coconut are great skin-safe summer scents!
Your skin behaves a bit differently in the summer, as all the heat and humidity tend to make it oilier and sweatier. This can lead to more acne and generally unhappy skin, but I find my aftershave routine can do a lot to affect this. I use heavy moisturizing creams in the winter and avoid alcohol, but I treat it much differently in the summer. For starters, I use a bracing alcohol-based aftershave. While alcohol isn’t technically good for your skin, I find it helps to level out the oiliness, and I also love how it feels and smells.
Like your moisturizer, you’ll want to lighten your aftershave cream. You should still use it, but something light and non-oily are best! I love the Kent of Inglewood aftershave, which is all-natural and contains a ton of skin-repairing ingredients in addition to aloe - great for healing sunburn. D.R. Harris’ aftershave milks are lovely and carry more fragrance; I suggest giving their Windsor scent a spin.
Kent of Inglewood Aftershave Balm is hydrating, healing, and fast absorbing!
Wash. That. Face.
Speaking of oily and sweaty, washing your face in the summer is more important than ever. As if my pores weren’t taking enough of a beating, I also spend a lot of time outside getting dirty in the warm months. Camping, hiking, digging around in the garden; all pretty filthy activities, and if I’m not careful, they really affect my skin.
You don’t want to overdo it but wash your face at least once a day. I generally do it before bed and definitely after any activities that could leave my face oily/ dirty. Any of our cleansers will do the trick nicely; I’m personally beholden to the magic that is Schaf skincare. I also make sure to wash my face when I’m camping. It sounds silly and excessive, but my skin is always the worst right after a weekend in the woods. Oil, smoke, booze, dirt - you get the picture. A tiny sliver of Aleppo soap does the trick beautifully, and a quick tooth-brushing and face-washing paired with a cup of coffee always gets me right as rain after a night of heavy consumption around the campfire.
I’ll be honest - I rarely exfoliate. Often I find it does more harm than good, especially during the dry, cold winter. However, the opposite is true from June to August. Despite my best efforts, I sometimes miss my routine during a weekend away, and I get more than an eyeful of dirt while tending my vegetable garden. For me, the mighty exfoliant is like a big reset button. I hop in the shower, give my skin a good scrub down, and carry on with my regular routine. The Schaf scrub works a treat, especially since I’m only using it once weekly. Just don’t overdo it!
The mighty konjac sponge is an incredible gentle exfoliator!
Snag a Konjac sponge for a more gentle exfoliation that can be done daily. These biodegradable sponges are great on your whole body and feel fantastic on your face without abrading your skin with frequent use.
I hope this helped you switch up your routine for the summer! If you need some more help from us, don’t hesitate to visit us in person or head down to the shop!
A famed cocktologist and axe man, Nathan opened the first Kent of Inglewood store in Calgary, and now spends his days writing most of what you are reading here and teaching straight razor shaving classes. Ask him about his world-famous Three Cherry Manhattan. In his spare time Nathan can be found sharpening his axe, making fermented foods, or practicing his amateur butchering hobby. He doesn't slur his words, he speaks in cursive.