Focus On You: Summertime Essentials

Beach days and road trips. BBQs and Sunday brunches. Summer signals the socially busiest time of the year. For three months, we’re packing our calendars full of everything the seasonal warmth invites. Here are a few tips to keep you looking and feeling fresh, cool and natural – from your clothes, to skin, to hair, to your fragrance.

Refresh Your Summer Wardrobe

For stale odors on clothes you’ve stored from last summer, bury them in in fresh kitty litter. As Jolie Kerr, the internet’s cleaning guru, told New York Magazine, dry-clean-only items are at high risk for BIBO (built-in body odor), or residue armpit smell. Kerr suggests burying them in kitty litter, or putting the garment in a plastic bag with holes poked in it, and then submerging it in kitty litter for 24 to 48 hours. Most kitty litter contains activated charcoal, which is an odor absorber. For dry-clean items that you can get wet, “spritz” the armpits with a mixture of vinegar and water, or vodka.

Solve Summertime Skin Issues

Makeup artist Wendy Rowe suggests swapping your foundation for a lightweight tinted moisturizer. “I like to apply it with my hands for a natural look.” But there’s more to do. As Marie Claire suggests, heat and humidity means adjusting your skincare regimen. “If you use a creamy cleanser, change to a foaming face wash or a glycolic-acid cleanser to remove dirt, oil and sunscreen.” Oil blotters can be real life savers, giving you a fast and easy way to remove excess oil without removing makeup. Remember to clean out your makeup to-go bag and carry only the summertime essentials. And, for radiance from within, load up on cantaloupe. “The sweet, delicious fruit delivers a unique hydration to the skin.”

If you’re an urban dweller, protect your skin from city grime. Glamour’s Lipstick suggests a mechanical exfoliator to combat clogged pores caused by city pollution. And, keep your hands away from your face. The bacteria you contract from the subway, ATM or grocery basket can cause Propionbacterium acne bacteria to flourish.

In Summer Skin Secrets, dermatologists share their favorite tips from oil-free anti-aging sunscreens to facial mists that calm the skin and iced washcloths on the neck to reduce facial redness. If you get sun burned, takes steps immediately to reduce the inflammation by applying a facecloth soaked in skim milk and ice to the affected area for five to 10 minutes. Also, sip a glass of red wine. The resveratol, a naturally-occurring phenol found in the skin of red grapes, has an anti-inflammatory effect and can decrease redness from acute sunburns.

Summer Proof Your Hair

Fight frizz, fading, or save your swimmer’s hair with advice from Women’s Day Summer Hair Care Tips and Prevention’s Your Summer Hair Woes, Solved. We especially liked “8 Summer Hair Care Tips” from Lady and the Blog including: use hair products with SPF and, before jumping in the pool or ocean; soak your hair in regular water to saturate the follicles. If you want that carefree beach hair look without going in the ocean, combine four ounces of very warm water and one teaspoon of kosher sea salt, and then follow these directions from The Daily Basics.

Use Summertime Fragrance Protocols

During summer never spray fragrance directly on your skin. Fragrances are alcohol-based. The combination of alcohol and ultra violet rays can leave your skin susceptible to burning and premature aging. Instead apply the scent to your finger tips, and then apply to the pulse points behind your ears and on your wrists.

The last and most important summertime essential is to relax and enjoy yourself – Let the music take you…