The rainy season (welcome, humidity!) can be blamed for a host of beauty disasters including oversecretion of sebum, fungal rashes, whiteheads, acne, blackheads, and more. The seasonal switch—while does provide relief from the scorching heat—often triggers excessive greasiness on the skin, which is further exacerbated by the wearing of face masks. "The consistent use of a facial mask leads to the moisture being trapped under, thus giving way to acne-causing bacteria and fungal infections," explains Plabita Sharma, National Training Manager, The Body Shop India.
Thereby, a change in season calls for a change in your skincare routine. Making quick customizations to your beauty regime can go far in curbing the wrath of the unprecedented weather on your skin. So let's ditch the summer essentials and stock up on humidity-friendly products that will not only shield your skin from the seasonal woes but will lend a healthy glow as well.
It's simple: Increased humidity = Increased sebum secretion = Attraction of dust, pollution particles = Clogged pores = Breakouts. "Opt for a gentle cleanser that is well-suited to your skin type and limit face washing to twice a day—over-washing tends to strip away your skin's natural oils, compromising its moisture barrier," recommends Sharma.
Dr Kiran Sethi, Delhi-based Integrative Aesthetic Specialist, Dermatologist and Founder, Isyaderm, adds, "Use a salicylic acid-based face wash to reduce oil obstruction and pore obstruction. Niacinamide and green tea infused toners and mists also combat oil secretion over time. Plus, choose a product that contains natural clay, AHA’s, BHA’s, or bakuchiol to increase skin cell turnover and avoid the dead skin from obstructing your pores (Beware AHA's and BHA's make your skin more sensitive to the sun!) Also, consider polyhydroxy acids for those with sensitive, dry skin types."
Monsoon often confuses your skin. Do you have an oily T-zone with normal-to-dry cheeks? If yes, you have a combination skin type. Dr Sethi recommends that you switch to a lotion or gel-based moisturiser in such a case. "Add retinol-infused products to your night routine as well to control sebum production and boost cellular turnover. Begin with the application of retinol twice a week, building up the strength over time," adds Dr Sethi.
On the other hand, Sharma explains, "A lightweight formula will help strike a balance between the varied regions on your skin, and ingredients such as Vitamin C, Aloe Vera, and Vitamin E will help fight free radicals and soothe your skin. Regularly hydrating your skin can be a game-changer amidst shifting seasons."
Have you dropped your sunblock owing to the cloudy weather? Bad move. Remember, skincare is incomplete without SPF. Offer your skin a protective shield by applying a sunscreen of SPF 15 or more, both indoors as well as outdoors. "Carry biodegradable organic face wipes with you for when you feel sweaty. Wipe your face and reapply the sunblock," suggests Dr Sethi.
Give Your Skin Some TLC
"Take out some time for your skin and indulge in a weekly routine of exfoliation and masking. Exfoliation helps get rid of dead skin cells and rejuvenates dull, tired skin. Plus, a fresh layer of skin also permits better absorption of products. Go for a sheet mask infused with antioxidants and allow your skin to soak in all the goodness it has to offer," says Plabita Sharma. "Look for astringent pads—lending a combination of AHA’s and BHA’s—especially if you're likely to sweat post a workout," adds Dr Sethi.
Avoid makeup if possible, since it will obstruct your pores. Alternatively, opt for minimal makeup—a dash of kohl in the waterline and a lip balm, maybe? "Use products that are suited to your skin type and help enhance your features without the addition of extra ingredients that may react poorly to the environmental conditions," explains Sharma. In short, put the 'less is more' principle into practice during monsoon.