Clinical Notes: Top Skin Barrier Disruptors to Watch for in Summer 2023

<h1>Clinical Notes: Top Skin Barrier Disruptors to Watch for in Summer 2023 </h1>

We’re getting deeper into summer and that means more sun, sweat, and summer fun! Your clients might also be noticing more impact on their skin – and for good reason. You suspected this – but scientific research increasingly confirms it; environmental factors such as climate and weather have a profound impact on the condition and quality of skin.  

June 28th has been established as the National Climate-Smart Skin Awareness Day; this initiative highlights how diverse climates and weather can impact the skin – and why it’s important to consider its impact when making lifestyle and skincare choices. As your clients’ leading beauty and skincare consultant, here’s what you need to know!    

Skin Barrier Function:  

Did you know that the skin is the largest organ in the body? It plays a prime role in our immune system function which is responsible for protecting our bodies from harmful agents while also healing our bodies from all sorts of illnesses. The skin is the body’s first line of defense; its proper balance and health are vital to the health of the whole body!  

The skin barrier refers to the outermost layer of the skin known as the Stratum Corneum.  Its role is to protect against external environmental factors like UV rays, pollutants, and other harmful substances. It also maintains the body’s moisture levels, defends against infections, and helps maintain homeostasis. Skin barrier quality plays a prime and essential role in not only the skin’s health but the body’s health.  

Summer Months and Top Skin Barrier Concerns:  

Summer months can bring a host of concerns such as increased sun exposure, heat, humidity, and other factors. Common skin barrier concerns during the summer months include:  

1.Sunburn: This is a leading skin concern during the summer months; it can lead to redness, pain, peeling, and long-term skin damage. Advise your clients to wear sunscreen, wear protective clothing, and seek shade to avoid sun damage.  

2.Dehydration: Hot weather and increased outdoor activities can cause dehydration, which can affect the skin’s barrier function. Dehydrated skin can become dry, tight, and prone to flaking. Advise your clients to carry water bottles, especially during the hot months, and drink plenty of water throughout the day. Contrary to popular belief, hydrating skincare products are key even in the summer months to help maintain proper skin hydration.  

3.Excessive sweating: The increase in heat and physical activity in summer months naturally causes increased sweating. Did you know that excessive sweating can alter the skin’s pH balance and lead to irritation and discomfort? Keeping the skin clean and using gentle cleansers can help maintain a healthy skin barrier.  

4.Heat Rash: Due to the excessive sweat and increased heat, this condition is another common summer concern. Also known as prickly heat or miliaria, sweat ducts get blocked, trapping sweat beneath the skin and causing red, itchy bumps or blisters.  This is why wearing lightweight, breathable clothing and cooler environments is often recommended during the summer months.  

5.Increased Oiliness: In hot and humid weather, the skin’s sebaceous glands may produce more oil, leading to a greasy or shiny appearance. This can contribute to clogged pores and breakouts. Advise your clients to use oil-free, lightweight skincare products and gentle cleansers to help manage oiliness.  

6.Allergies and Irritation: Seasonal allergies or increased exposure to common irritants like pollen, grass, or chlorine from swimming pools can irritate and disrupt the skin barrier. Inform your clients regarding the benefit of minimizing exposure to these irritants when possible, rinsing off after outdoor activities, and using soothing skincare products to manage any such concerns.   

Your Expert Advice  

By being aware of some base skin barrier disruptors common to the summer months, you’re in a better position to advise clients who may be experiencing unwanted skin effects. Maintaining optimal skin barrier health is key to maintaining fresh, clear and healthy skin. Tune in to next month’s newsletter to learn about how you can identify a disrupted skin barrier when conducting your consultations.