After a scorching hot summer, full of prickly heat and torrents of sweat, everyone welcomes the refreshing monsoon with an open heart. The beautiful rainy season brings with it evenings sipping hot tea with your family, walks through the park in the light drizzle and scenic, drenched landscapes, rich with the fragrance of the moist earth. But it also brings with it a variety of troubles with your skin and your regular skincare routine might just not suffice to fulfil the needs of your skin during this seasonal transition.
How can the monsoon affect my skin?
The monsoon creates a moist environment, which is suitable for bacteria, virus and other microorganisms to breed in. Excessive humidity during the rainy season increases the risk of catching an infection manifold. The most common infections one can catch during this time like acne and ringworm are caused by bacteria or fungi.
One tends to sweat a lot in this season and is prone to dehydration, which can raise the likelihood of being infected even higher. In fact, people who already suffer from excessive sweating disorders concentrated in areas like their feet, face, scalp and armpits can experience a degradation of their condition which leads to unpleasant body odour and risk of infections.
Due to the weather being mostly cloudy, people often omit sunscreens from their usual skincare routines. This can cause hyperpigmentation in the form of darkened patches of skin and have other harmful effects on your skin due to exposure to the UV rays of the sun. Sudden and extreme changes in the moisture content of the environment cause your skin to fluctuate in terms of the amount of natural oil it secretes.
If your skin becomes too oily or sweaty to counter the high humidity of the air, it will attract dust, fungus and bacteria which might cause an array of skin problems ranging from blackheads and whiteheads to acne. It might seem ironical, but because of the excessive water content lost in the form of sweat due to high humidity, the skin might even become dry and flaky. Every time you get drenched in the rain, your body is trapped in a moist environment in the form of damp clothes, which is dangerous for your skin.
Monsoon Skincare Tips
Clearly, your skin is prone to problems during the monsoon season owing to the humid atmosphere. So here are some tips to battle through these issues and enjoy the beautiful weather while also protecting your skin by changing up your skincare routine accordingly. The key is to clean and hydrate, but these additional guidelines will help your mould your routine to suit the change in the environment.
1. Do not omit sunscreen
A lot of people feel that because the sun is hidden behind the clouds in this weather, it makes it safe for them to go out without applying any form of sun protection to their face. But this is merely a myth, and just because the sky is cloudy owing to the monsoon season does not imply that your skin is not prone to suffering from damage because of the harmful ultraviolet rays of the sun. So before you step outside and expose your skin, make sure to layer your face with a sunscreen that offers an adequate level of shielding against the sun. You should go for a product that provides protection of the level equal to or above SPF 30.
2. Wash adequately
When your skin is exposed to the excessive humidity in the air, it tends to produce higher levels of oil and sweat. This can cause it to become sticky and act as a magnet for dirt and microorganisms that can cause pimples on your face or allergic reactions in some cases. Thus, make sure that you wash your face twice daily to get rid of the excess oil production in the skin and protect it from the accumulation of dirt or bacteria. However, make sure you do not overdo and wash your face more often than necessary as this may strip your skin of its natural oils and cause it to become dry.
3. Drink lots of water
When your skin produces excessive sweat, it can end up becoming dehydrated and looking dry and flaky. If you feel lethargic and tired frequently, this might be a sign of dehydration. You should avoid drinking too much of beverages like coffee and tea as they tend to reduce the water content of the body with time. Additionally. drink at least 6 to 8 glasses of water on a day to day basis so that your skin looks hydrated, fresh and glowy. Water can also help you to flush out all the toxins and bacteria that are likely to cause acne and other skin issues. If you find it hard to drink too much water at once, you can meet your target intake by distributing it as small sips of water throughout the day at regular intervals to maintain your skin. You can also opt for meeting you required water intake through juices or soups.
4. Do not go for heavy makeup looks
If you put on multiple layers of cosmetic products as a part of an elaborate makeup look, your skin may end up regretting it. Too much makeup can block the pores in your skin and restrict it from breathing. This is a primary and common cause of acne and breakouts. So go easy on the contour and highlight and opt for more natural and minimalistic looks. If you necessarily find yourself in a position where you must go for heavy makeup, make sure to not keep it on for long and clean it out thoroughly before going to bed. Additionally, ensure that you give your skin a break for a few days and keep gaps between the days you chose to wear a substantial amount of makeup and opt for cosmetic products containing natural ingredients as far as possible.
5. Exfoliate regularly
Exfoliating your skin regularly will help you unclog your pores and prevent acne breakouts. It will also remove the dead skills from your skin, revealing the new bright skin cells underneath and leave a natural afterglow because gently rubbing your skin can improve the blood circulation under it. This process becomes even more essential in the monsoon season to remove the dust and bacteria that might accumulate on your skin. If you want to avoid using cosmetic products, you can even go for a natural mixture composed of honey and sugar. However, make sure you are gentle on your skin and do not use abrasive ingredients.
6. Keep your lip balm handy
The monsoon can severely strip your skin of moisture and your lips may be the first victims of the same since the skin here is the thinnest and most prone to cracking. Dry and chapped lips can be a complete nuisance. Avoid trying to lick your lips to moisturize them since saliva will only eventually leave them drier. Instead, carry a small lip balm around with you and use this to hydrate and soothe your chapped lips. If you have dry skin on your lips, avoid pulling it out as this can be quite painful and cause damage. Instead, use a moisturizing lip scrub to gently rub off the dead skin.
7. Do not skip your toner
It is important to tone your skin in the monsoon to get rid of all remaining traces of dirt and makeup from your skin. You can even create your own natural toner by using ingredients like rose water, lemon juice or green tea. Your pores expand due to sweating because of the humidity and it becomes important to tone your skin to seal your powers and control the sebum production on your face. This will not just help you clean your skin but will also help you get rid of acne problems and will nourish your skin while also maintaining it at a healthy pH level.
8. Moisturize thoroughly
Just because the weather is rainy and the air is humid does not mean that you can skip moisturizer from your routine. In fact, moisturising your skin becomes very important in the monsoon season to replenish it of the dehydration caused by increased sweating and exposure to the sun and pollution. If you have oily skin and find it difficult to cope with the moist air in the rainy reason, you can opt for a suitable day time water-based moisturizer for your skin type that does not make your skin feel greasy and uncomfortable, and maintains its hydration levels and softness.
9. Fight bacterial and fungal infections
A moist environment is perfect for bacteria and fungi to breathe in and spread around. So when you are inevitably exposed to them, you are at risk of catching skin infections. To help fight skin infections, you can switch from using your regular talcum powder to one with anti-fungal properties. You can use it every day after showering to prevent harmful bacteria and fungi from accumulating on your skin. Additionally, the powder will soak up the moisture and sweat on your body and hence prevent these harmful microorganisms from latching on to you. You can even mix a hint of this talc in your face powder to avoid infections on your face.
10. Switch to warm water
Make use of water at warmer temperatures while cleansing your face. Since your skin may end up producing a lot of oil during the monsoon. this oil may accumulate dirt and bacteria and act as a shield against cleansing agents. To ensure that the cleansing agent can get to work you must use slightly warm water that will open up your pores and ease the cleaning process. This will even help the moisturizer to penetrate deeper into your skin and lock the moisture in it and not just mix with the dirt accumulated on it. However, do not use water at excessively high temperature as this might just strip your skin of natural oils and cause burns and weakened capillaries.
11. Try some natural DIY face masks
The monsoon is the best season to try some do-it-yourself masks to nourish and maintain your skin. If your skin is oily, you can go for a mashed banana face mask to hydrate it deeply. To exfoliate your skin, you can choose an oatmeal pack which will unclog your pores and also remove the dead skin cells from your face. If you have more sensitive skin that can be irritated with a scrub such as one made of oatmeal, you can always go for a papaya mask, which contains antioxidants and exfoliates the skin in a much more gentle manner. A green tea face mask will tighten your pores, fight any form of bacterial inflammation that might lead to pimples and even help you protect your skin from the harmful effects of UV sun rays.
Along with following the above tips, it is essential that you eat well in the form of a nutritious diet so that your skin feels as good on the inside as it does on the outside. To make up for all the water you lose by sweating all day, especially make sure that your diet does not, in any way, lack foods with ample amount of water content so that you can stay hydrated and energized all day. If you still happen to develop any form of rash or a fungal infection on the skin of any part of your body, do not hesitate and immediately consult with a dermatologist. Do not wait for the condition of your skin to get worse before taking the necessary action. Taking proper precautions is necessary so that you may truly enjoy the monsoon magic without causing your skin any trouble and maintain its naturally healthy and beautiful appearance.