If you’re like us, you’re looking forward to a summer filled with beach vacays, summer cookouts, and plenty of sunshine — but you’re probably not as pumped about the inevitable skin woes that accompany this warmer weather. Luckily, we’ve got the dermatological solutions to all your summer skin issues.
Acne & Oily Skin
What causes it? Blackheads and acne and whiteheads, oh my! Summer can be an absolute smorgasbord of acne (gross visual, we know). There are myriad causes of summer breakouts and oiliness. First, more than just 15-30 minutes of sun exposure (depending on your skin tone) can damage the skin and cause a breakout. Moreover, some sunblocks — an essential in the summer sun — can add to this oiliness and clog pores. Finally, sweating and tight clothing can team up to cause the inflamed pimples known as folliculitis.
What you can do: One of the best ways to prevent acne — particularly on the back and chest — is to rinse off after sweating and to avoid tight clothing that rubs against the skin. Stick to sun-protection products and makeups that say “oil-free” or “non-comedogenic.” And of course, be sure to thoroughly wash away makeup and sunblock before going to sleep. If these simple steps don’t work, check in with your dermatologist, for guidance on sunscreens and other treatments for acne prone skin.
What causes them? Of course, too much time in the sun! But there are other contributing factors, like how far you are from the equator, your altitude, and whether you’re on reflective sand or water, which can intensify the sun’s rays.
What you can do: The American Academy of Dermatology recommends putting on sunblock 15 minutes before you head out into the sun and reapplying every two hours or after swimming or sweating.
Already burned? Check out these tips for managing the damage.
What causes them? There can be many causes of summer skin rashes, but some of the most common ones are poisonous plants (like poison ivy), fungal infections like jock itch or athlete’s foot, and heat. Specifically, heat rash occurs, according to The Mayo Clinic, when “the sweat ducts become blocked and perspiration is trapped under your skin.”
What you can do: The way to handle your rash depends on its cause.
- Heat rash should go away on its own once you cool down. Simply find a spot with A/C and chill out.
- You can deal with jock itch or athlete’s foot by staying cool and dry and using a simple over the counter anti-fungal treatment.
- To avoid poison ivy, poison oak, and similar skin rashes, simply avoid touching the plants that cause them (check out this visual guide to learn what to look for). If you’ve already got one of these rashes, follow the AAD’s treatment suggestions.
Regardless of the cause of your rash, if it doesn’t show signs of improving within a few days or is accompanied by other symptoms, like swelling, joint pain, or fever, you should contact your dermatologist right away. Submit photos and a description of your symptoms through SkyMD to hear back in as little as a few hours.
With a few simple precautions — and easy-peasy treatments when necessary — skin woes shouldn’t pose any threat to your summer fun. And of course, your dermatologist is always available through SkyMD to help treat any issues that come up.