These dry skin care tips for swimmers and sunbathers require some effort and consistency for protecting your skin from the drying effects of chlorine and UV rays after spending a day in the sun or the pool.
Sun, wind and chlorine all contribute to dry skin. Some people's skin will get itchy and flakey others may even develop a rash. Want to restore that healthy glow to your face, your legs or your arms? Here are some ways you can protect, nourish and hydrate your skin without having to stay out of the pool or out of the sun.
When you get out of the pool, chlorine is "stuck" to your skin. Not only does this bacteria fighting chemical leave you smelling like chlorine, it also leaves you with "the gift" of dry, itchy skin.
Some people have an allergy to chlorine which can result in a chlorine rash.
One thing you need to be more aware of when you are in the pool frequently is that you have to work harder at hydrating and moisturizing your skin. You know about that dry, tight feeling that often is accompanied by irritated and itchy skin after some pool time. Here are some tips that have helped to protect my skin:
There are several reasons you will see signs at public pools instructing you to shower before entering the pool. A big reason is to help minimize the impact of chlorine on your skin. By getting your skin wet first, less chlorine is absorbed by your skin helping to minimize the drying effects of this chemical.
1. Wet Your Skin Before Swimming
Just like your hair, dry skin absorbs more chlorine and causes more damage leaving you with itching skin that feels tight and dry. Either quickly run the hose over your skin or if you have an outdoor shower, get your skin nice and wet before entering the pool.
2. Shower With Plain Water When You Get Out of the Pool
Rinse off your skin and hair with just water from a hose or a shower (ideally one with a chlorine water filter).
3. Use a Chlorine Removing Spray
Have you noticed that depending on how high the level of chlorine is, you can still smell like chlorine even after you have showered? Leave it to your grandkids to tell you that you smell like a swimming pool. Plain water and a body wash might get you clean but they can't remove the chlorine smell or all of the chlorine that has bonded to your skin.
Now that I know about these neutralizing, safe vitamin C sprays, I keep one in our outdoor shower and spray it all over my hair and skin after rinsing off with plain water.
Vitamin C spray has really helped to keep my skin from drying out and becoming itchy. For afternoons by the pool when I am in and out of the water, I don't wait to use the spray. My legs seem to react the most and get itchy when I get out of the pool, so now I spray them right away with the vitamin C spray. It just takes a couple of sprays and the itchiness goes away.
3. Shower With Hydrating Cleanser
After you have used the chlorine removing spray, shower your body using a hydrating body wash - not one that strips your skin of oils- and rinse everything off to help rid your skin of more chlorine residue.
4. Best Lotions for Dry Skin
Even with a vigilant chlorine removal strategy, your skin will get dry from being in the pool and the sun.
It's best to apply body moisturizers for dry skin right after you shower while your skin is still damp for extra hydration. I put a squirt of Lustro Body Oil in my hand along with a squirt of Hydrating Body Lotion by Beautycounter. Rub it on your legs, feet, arms, neck and chest to help eliminate dry, itchy skin. It absorbs quickly, hydrates deeply but doesn't leave a greasy feel. The oil is expensive, but one bottle has lasted me almost a year.
For dry skin patches I use a more intense, extra thick moisturizing cream or body butter. You will find it very soothing especially if you have swimmer's itch from chlorine.
Places like my elbow, heels, feet and neck need a little more hydration and seem to dry out more. I find this Body Butter by Beautycounter to be very healing and soothing. You will love how rich and thick this moisturizing cream is and how well it hydrates and repairs your skin. You only need a tiny bit to put on your dry patch of skin to see results.
You might not be able to control your chlorine exposure as a swimmer butyou can control what lotions you put on your skin. Feel good about what you put on your hair and skin with products that use safer ingredients.
Another dry skin care tip is to use a natural body scrub. You can make your own or buy one. I like how my skin feels smooth and hydrated after using this brown sugar body scrub by Beautycounter.
Use your body scrub after you get out of the pool and have finished applying your Vitamin C spray, rinsed off with water, washed off your sunscreen..and then use the body scrub on your legs, feet, arms, hands and décolletage.
Nourish your skin from the inside as well as the outside. Have lots of cold water available to hydrate your body and your skin. Sodas, lemonade, and fruit juices aren't good substitutes for plain (filtered) water.
We like to use an infuser and cut fresh lemons for a refreshing and good for you taste.
Sitting under a shade umbrella is just one of several strategies to use to protect your face from the sun.
To keep your face hydrated and protected in the morning follow these steps:
1. Cleanse your face with a cream cleanser or you can use organic olive oil as your cleanser - and just wipe off with a warm damp cloth.
2. Apply your eye cream,
3. Apply serum, and
4. Apply your favorite moisturizer.
5. Apply face sunscreen.
After you've done that, then apply a hydrating tinted face moisturizer with an SPF of 20.
Because many facial sunscreens contain Rentinol, retinyl palmitate or synthetic Vitamin A, which actually can cause harm to your skin, I like a tinted face moisturizer by Beautycounter that protects and hydrates with safer ingredients. You will need to reapply after you've been in the water, have wiped your face with a towel, or after 2 hours or so in the sun.
When you are out by the pool wear wrap around sunglasses, a sun protection hat and ideally sit under a patio umbrella. Wrap around sunglasses help to protect delicate skin around your eyes where you can't often apply sunscreen or if you are like me, your eyes will start to sting and water.
If you are looking for a new cream for around your eyes, you might want to try Countermatch Eye Rescue Cream. I apply it in the morning, after I've been in or out by the pool, and again before bedtime. Staying ahead of the "dry skin" game is a good strategy for us pool people.
Sooth, nourish, and replenish....
Dry skin in the summer doesn't have to be inevitable. Be prepared with mists, moisturizers and minimizing your exposure to chlorine. Wear your sleeveless tops and shorts that show off your glowing, hydrated skin.