Summer is soon going to knock at the door in most parts of the country. It’s that time of the year when the Barbecues will remain in the stacks but swim suits will be flung out of the closet for some well-deserved relaxation. Summer can be associated with countless woes as it brings temptations of ice cream, giving diet and exercise a miss, and overdoing the tan by spending long hours in the pool. Our skin and hair have numerous roles to play in bodily functions other than just sitting at its place, looking pretty. Skin acts as a barrier against the environment and germs. It is responsible for keeping our body cool, healthy and strong. Keeping the skin nourished, supple and free of acne is not an expensive affair. If you have already burnt a big hole in your pocket by trying out different expensive and ineffective beauty products, it’s time to bring few modifications to your daily chores to battle the summer heat.
With climate change in India and temperatures rising above bearable limits, everyone tends to succumb to dehydration. During summer, body tends to lose a lot of moisture and so it’s important to replenish the H2O levels. It goes without saying that intake of water is the ardent need of the hour. Chach and nimbu paani are healthier options than aerated drinks and juices that come in tetra packs.
Protect your skin
It would be best to stay indoors between 11 am to 3 pm, when the sun is scorching and can have an adverse effect on skin. Applying that all-important sunscreen 30 minutes before stepping out is a must. Nearly 80 per cent of ultra violet rays pass through clouds, meaning that sunburn is possible on cloudy days as well. Over exposure to the summer does not only cause severe tanning, wrinkles and age spots but could also lead to risk of skin cancer. People with sensitive skin should opt for a mineral-based sunscreen and ones troubled by oily skin should go for water-based sun block.
Use a toner
‘Cleansing, toning and moisturising’ is the ultimate beauty mantra every professional swears by. Most of the people tend to ignore the middle step but toning is important to keep the pores closed and skin cool. Toner does not essentially need to be an expensive one and a simple rose water serves as an excellent toner for summer in India.
The adage 'you are what you eat' is a well-known fact today. Face creams and treatments have their own reserved domains for the rich and influential, but nourishing skin from the inside out has always been more popular. Green tea, fruits and green veggies are something we all should consume for good health and holistic well-being. Leafy greens are high in natural estrogens, besides glow-generating ingredients like vitamins A and C. With age our body stops producing estrogens and then it becomes essential to supplement them with plant estrogens available in broccoli and sweet potatoes.
Whisk up fruit smoothies
Fruit smoothies are definitely good to get your five-a-day supply in an instant but one should watch out for smoothies made with ice creams or whole milk as they can be extremely calorific. Alternatively, whip out smoothies with your favourite fruit and skimmed milk at home. Banana smoothie and papaya smoothie can be made exciting by adding some dry fruits.
Get rid of that tan
A facepack made of gram flour mixed with yoghurt is the best cure to get rid of an uneven tan. Add a dash of lime juice to make the pack heavenly. The citrus properties of lemon are very effective in getting rid of stubborn tan.
The BB cream
Yes the latest fad in the cosmetic world is the BB cream, fondly called the absolute ‘IT Girls’ of skincare. As days become longer, light cotton clothes and less makeup rule the season. Therefore, the all-in-one face fix for sun protection and even skin tone can bring instant brightness and a perfect glow.
Papaya, banana, cucumber and oranges are full of natural goodness and are economical ways of keeping the skin nourished in the summer heat. Just mix any of these fruit pulps with honey and leave the mixture on your face for about 20 minutes and you are ready to face the day. Papaya abounds in antioxidants, beta-carotene and Vitamins C, which will protect the skin against sun damage. You can also whip a banana shake and apply all over your body to bring back suppleness. In fact, most of the all-season ripe fruits including papaya, apple, strawberries and the like are good for our skin.
The fruit magic works for hair as well. For shoulder length hair, take two ripe bananas and add 4 tablespoons of honey in it. You can add some water to get the perfect consistency and put it in your hair from the scalp to the ends. Leave it on for an hour and wash off with a mild shampoo. You can use a broad bristle comb too while washing your hair to remove the left overs.
Don't Forget The Moisturizer
Some people think that moisturizers are not important in summer. But friends, if you have a dry skin please don't skip the moisturizing part. People with oily skin should also opt for a water-based moisturizer, specially at night. And please don't forget the golden rule of removing make-up before going to sleep.
The most important factors to stay healthy for the whole year, irrespective of the season, are peace of mind, work out for at least 45 minutes every day and 7 to 8 hours of sleep.