I know oily skin, redness and itchiness might TOTALLY get you down this summer, so I wanted to help you fight these issues in the most holistic way possible!
Since I’m sure you’re super busy, I’ll jump right into the 9 steps to avoid summer breakouts!
To start, let’s talk about the #1 thing you shouldn’t do for your acne this summer.
1. Do NOT change too many things up in terms of topical treatments.
Summer can sometimes be a free for all of fun. BBQs, pool parties, etc.
But it’s super important that your skin feels as little of this change as possible, because you want to keep it feeling balanced and regulated.
When you’re out in the summer sun, going for hikes, swimming etc, your skin is working on OT (overtime.)
Your body is most likely pumping out more hormones in general because you’re so much more active compared to normal and this creates other chain reactions in your body.
There is most likely, more oil being produced (which is a breeding ground for acne) and you’re most likely touching your face more too because you’re just out and about (which adds more bacteria to the mix), so its super important to add as FEW irritants into the mix as possible.
So try not to change up your topical routine this summer.
Do NOT decide that mid July at the height of a heat wave, that that is the time to experiment with that new 6 part acne clearing plan with extra benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid. It will, most likely, NOT go well. (Who did that one summer? Me? Never. Never.)
So what CAN you do instead?
Two of the things you CAN do to help your skin stay calm amidst all of this change are:
- Start and maintain an awesome acne clearing morning routine, grab my fav here
- Grab a power breakfast, like this skin healthy breakfast
So I’m sure you’ve heard me talk about a morning routine before, but in case you haven’t, it’s super important. Keeping a routine every day really helps your bod “stay on schedule”.
Aside from what I just shared about, here is MY favorite acne clearing morning routine. (Super similar to one I shared last spring during a challenge:)
- I grab a big glass of water first thing (8 ounces) and then I stretch and/or meditate. The point is to do something that is grounding for you, and really helps you get focused for the day.
- Grab a power breakfast. (Find a skin healthy breakfast here).
One of my favorite “power breakfasts” that supports clear skin is 2-3 hardboiled eggs, a big handful of mixed organic veggies and a big handful of almonds on the side.
NOW. If you’re used to eating a bagel with cream cheese and eggs and hash browns and coffee and all delicious sugary items…. this WILL seem like a shockingly small amount of food to you.
But hear me out. This meal brings your bod protein and a bit of sugar (but not too much) for a perfect mix of energy and fuel that will keep you feeling full and satisfied MUCH longer than the bagel with cream cheese. Trust me on this.
- DON’T decide July (most likely the hottest month of the year) is the time to completely switch up your entire skincare routine and to try that brand new 6 part acne clearing system. Your skin very well may go haywire with all of the humidity, activity and general oiliness that’s already happening. Decide on a plan now (in early May) and try not to change it up too much.
- DO maintain your morning routine. Drink 8 ounces of water the minute you wake up (you’re most likely dehydrated) and meditate, stretch, do something that grounds you and prepares you for the day.
- DO grab a power breakfast.
2. You must keep your digestion on point.
I can’t stress this enough; you have got to make sure your digestion stays regular for the clearest, most glowing skin possible.
And buhleeeeve me, I know that this is a challenging request.
From the appetizers to the drinks on the beach, its really easy to get either “all stopped up” (you know what I’m talking about) or totally “going” too much.
So here are the two steps you can take to keep your digestion on point:
- Take your probiotics.(Find a list of what vitamins are good for acne here).
- Try out my favorite and most refreshing summer drink, Kombucha.
Probiotics are kinda like the holy grail in terms of skin health. I talk about them all of the time (hahaha if you’re heard me talk about them before you’re probably quite sick of it hahah, but bear with me!)
I take a probiotic every day to keep the bacteria balanced in my belly- and this balancing can have a major impact on your acne. (Need more suggestions on Vitamins for Acne? Grab some here and here.)
In case probiotics are new to you, probiotics are supplements you can take to help the growth of GOOD bacteria that helps maintain the natural balance of organisms (microflora) in your intestines. I talk about them more here and here.
Now, if you’re going to pick up probiotics for the first time, you want them to have at least these two things:
- At least 10 Billion live cultures
- Include the two strains; Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium
Kombucha. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, Kombucha is a raw, fermented, pro-biotic and naturally carbonated tea that you can usually find in most health food stuffs and it’s surprisingly refreshing and fizzy.
Kombucha is a really great addition to the probiotics I mentioned above because it’s a natural probiotic that will really help you continue to balance your digestion.
For maximum goodness, grab 2 bottles at your health food store and try one out to see how your body feels.
These two elements combined with a morning routine and and a power breakfast, will totally set you up for balance in your skin to help it thrive!
- DON’T say no to fun things this summer just because you’re afraid they’ll throw you off track but….
- DO take your probioitics.
- DO try kombucha.
These two items together will help you maintain some regularity and balance despite even the most impromptu daiquiri and hayride parties. (I may have been to one a few weeks ago:)
Also, if you want to take a gander at my post on poo and your digestion, where I share more information on another one of my favorite digestion tools, grab it here:)
3. Even though working out and getting sweaty may stress you out- sweat can sometimes mean more breakouts – do it anyways.
Years ago, if someone had told me to exercise for my acne, I most likely would have probably cringed and then gotten annoyed at them (so it’s ok if you’re currently feeling like that:)
But I have to tell you. Exercise is a super important and a SUPER powerful aspect of clearing your acne.
So without getting too nitty gritty into the insane (-ly awesome) chemical and hormonal pathways that make exercise so good for your skin (I’d rather give you action steps to get you moving TODAY, than bore you:) I’ll give you a few details and then we’re gonna do a writing exercise.
When you exercise, “happy hormones” are released throughout your body.
These hormones are called endorphins and they literally trigger a positive feeling in your body because they help to reduce pain, relieve depression and increase circulation and lower stress (circulation and stress are super important here because they have a pretty powerful effect on your skin).
But to make exercise actually happen, you MUST find YOUR thing.
Not what your best friend loves-or even what the sexy man at the gym loves.
And to do this you gotta get real with yourself– are you a morning person- or night person?
Ask yourself: at what time, during the day specifically- do I feel the most invigorated, excited, awake, “up”?
Take a few minutes now, step away from the computer and take out a piece of paper and a pen to think for a second.
I want you to brainstorm on three physical activities that you’ve done in your life that make you feel “alive”. (And if you want more details on how I’ve fallen in love with exercise, check out what the summer body means to me here, it relates, I promise:)
Search high and low in your brain.
Did you go rock climbing one time and it became one of the coolest memories ever? Did someone drag you salsa dancing- like you dreaded going- but when you found yourself there, you felt more exhilarated than you ever had? Did you go to yoga one time (even if you’re a masculine guy!) and feel super peaceful and zen afterwards?
I want you to brainstorm a list of those workouts below and then schedule in 3 times next week to explore these workouts.
Literally, go to your calendar right now and schedule in 3 different (or all of the same) workouts that totally light you up, excite you or make you look forward to doing.
I promise you that if you really work through this exercise and really put your heart into it- you’ll find a few workouts that really “light yo’ fire” and it will totally change the way you look at exercise for good:)
- DON’T avoid excercise because youre worried it’ll make you breakout more.
- DO find your fav type of excercise, the best for YOU.
So now let’s move to step #4 in beating the summer breakout blues.
4. Go for a dip in the ocean.
For our fourth step I wanted to share a little tip that I used to use in the summer that was a totally secret weapon in terms of soothing my breakouts and handling redness and oiliness throughout the summer.
When I was having particularly bad breakouts; I always noticed after a dip in the ocean that my skin would dry out a bit for a few days.
It would help the redness and oiliness… and I often felt like it helped me heal.
Once I did a bit more research, I discovered that have actually been studies down on the effect of salt (sodium) on acne and they have been generally positve! You can check it out a study done on the effect of salt on acne here.
So if you live near the ocean, or someone near you wants to plan a trip to the ocean, schedule that today!
So I have to add in a quick PSA here as well regarding “tanning” and the summer. Now, this is a topic that I could go on for days about, but I will spare you a long diatribe, but do not go out in the sun without a hat.
No matter how frustrating your skin is making you feel, always protect it. I have very fair skin – and I’ve always been maniacal about protecting it (after I realized that my “tan” was everyone else’s normal) and my skin has thanked me as I’ve gotten older. I have far less wrinkles than normal and so will you, if you protect! You will thank me later.
- DON’T get a sunburn. Or leave your skin exposed. Wear a hat. No negotiations.
- DO go for a long walk, a run, or do some yoga- and try to do this every day.
- DO take a dip in the ocean- it may help to soothe some pesky summer breakouts in a really great way.
So now that i’ve given you my fav summer activity, let’s talk about the 5th step to keeping your skin clear (also happens to be another drink you should try!)
5. Lemon water, lemon water, lemon water.
Ok, you may have heard this recommendation before, but bear with me.
Drinking lemon water is fantastic for your skin because lemon water naturally increases the amount of water that you excrete.
While that may not sound great at first (who wants to be dehydrated?) this is ultimately ok because when you drink lemon water you increase the amount of citric acid in your body, which helps your body flush out unwanted toxins in a really great way.
Flushing toxins out is really important to skin health, so pick up a few organic lemons and drink up!
SO ok, I know I just gave you a TON of details, and there’s a check list that I’ll be adding in at the very end for you to download: (waitttt for it:) but I wanted to share a few bonus secret steps for keeping your skin clear!
6. Maintain balanced blood glucose levels.
Haha, I’ll make that more simple- you must manage your blood sugar.
I’ve created a program called the Clear Your Skin, Change Your Life™ Program and one of the most important things that we address in it is balancing blood sugar.
I could go on for days about blood sugar and how important it is to helping clear your acne but I’ll spare you the science jargon today and I’ll just say that it’s very important.
Here are two things you can do to keep your blood sugar balanced throughout the day:
- You can eat a protein plus a fruit every 2-2.5 hours to keep your blood sugar stable throughout the day.
- Do not binge eat sugary things on an empty stomach, that is a surefire way to spike your blood sugar in a no bueno way!
Now I wanted to tell you about the last important steps to keeping your skin clear, that we also address in the Clear Your Skin, Change Your Life™ program:
7. You must create a predictable and consistent routine for your body and skin that allows your body to heal.
Since I know summer is really busy, I’ve created the Clear Your Skin, Change Your Life™ 30 Day Self Study Program to help you create a routine without a lot of guess work, AND allows your body to heal from the inside, out. Check it out here!
8. Focus on crowding out the bad, and adding in the good.
What do I mean by this? Try to add in 10 fruits and veggies a day, if you can.
Overwhelmed on where to start?
Grab some ideas here on 7 foods for glowing skin, or grab a delicious acne clearing dinner recipe as well.
When you have acne, filling your body with anti-inflammatory, healing fruits, vegetables and fish is super important. (I created the Clear Your Skin, Change Your Life™ Program, to really help you fill up with the most healing foods for your skin and body on the whole. Check it out here!
9….. and you have to create a way of life for yourself, your body and skin, that helps you thrive on balance.
Now, I know that you want to clear your skin holistically and naturally through food and nutrition….. and you may feel really excited about all of the steps I just gave you – the kombucha, the probiotics, the dips in the ocean, the balancing your blood sugar…. but you also might feel a teeny bit overwhelmed.
How are you going to integrate all of those items on your own, in a way that feels organized and focused?
And most importantly, how are you going to customize these steps to fit YOU and your lifestyle?
I’ve put together a few items that might help!
If you’re looking for a quick acne clearing jump start, head over to the Clear Your Skin, Change Your Life™ 30 Day Jumpstart Program for more info!
If you’re more interested in just understanding WHY you have acne in the first place, head over to grab a copy of Bold and Bare, A Guide to Make up Optional Skin for more details!
I’ve created a whole host of amazing programs to help you manage your blood sugar, balance your nutrition, so head over right now to check them out!
Want a checklist for the items I just mentioned above? Pin the image below over on your favorite boards!