No doubt, swimming is one of the best and most fun forms of exercise. Also, having to take a trip to the beach or pool adds a little more exciting element. During the summer, nothing is more fun and relaxing to do than to hang out near the waters and take in the sun, the salt, the sand, and the winds.
When you go to the beach or pool, you usually think about the foods and beer you want to bring, the outfit and suit you’ll be wearing, and how to avoid traffic on your way there.
However, as you step foot into a chlorine-treated pool, you expose your skin to chemicals and irritants. When you go to the sunny beach, you risk your skin from being dried out and sunburnt. You always need to keep your skin hydrated and moisturized while you’re at the beach or pool.
Here are some tips to keep your skin moisturized:
Take care of your skin before your vacation.
For days or weeks before your trip, avoid products that dry out your skin or make you more sensitive to sunlight. Regularly moisturize your skin before your trip, and use an extra does before riding an airplane, since air travel can easily dry out skin.
Protect your skin and hair by wearing a hat, an umbrella, and a sundress.
Extended exposure to sun doesn’t only cause tanning and sunburn – it also causes dehydration to the skin, which contributes to premature aging. It’s fun to hang out under the sun for a while, but don’t stay too long unprotected. Get a hat, wear some coverup, or stay under an umbrella. Here’s a guide for you to find out the high-quality beach umbrellas that can help protect your skin on the beach.
If you’re soaking under the sun from a hammock or a lounge chair, wear a sundress or a long loose pants paired with a summer top with sleeves . Lightweight clothing can keep you comfortable and minimize direct sun exposure. When picking out a spot, to hang out, choose one with an umbrella, as it can provide you with a cool shady hang-out between different activities. Getting some shade is a good way to prevent sunburns and heat exhaustion.
The top of your head, as well as your hair, can get damaged by the sun. The scalp is also one of the most difficult places to notice signs of skin cancer. To ensure that this area is protected and covered, wear a hat. A wide-brimmed summer hat is a fashionable choice that can also protect your eyes, face, and neck from the harmful rays of the sun. If you’re a swimmer or are wearing sporty swim gear, use a swim cap to coordinate with your look.
Pick an appropriate sunscreen
Applying sunscreen is an important step to keeping your skin hydrated and moisturized while under the sun. When your skin is protected, it loses less moisture, thus keeping your skin healthy. According to the American Cancer Society, the recommended SPF for daily use is 15 and 30+ for extended periods of exposure. For beach and pool time, it is recommended that you get sunscreen of SPF 50 or higher for the face to help prevent premature aging and burning. You may even want to use baby sunscreen since it often offers a higher level of protection, made with gentler ingredients, and are sometimes less expensive than adult sunscreen.
Apply sunscreen everywhere
When you apply sunscreen before going for a swim, where do you apply the product? Most people put some only in the face, neck, legs, arms and upper body. However, don’t forget these areas as well:
- Ears – these parts are directly under the sun’s light. Most people who go to swim and spend time under the sun end up with red and burnt ears, because it’s an easy area to overlook.
- Feet, toes, hands, and fingers – When you’re tanning, your feet are also getting the same amount of sunlight as the rest of your body. It’s one of the most common places neglected while applying sunscreen, which can make the skin on your feet to wrinkle and age prematurely due to constant sun damage. Also, don’t forget the back of your hands and fingers. These places receive sunlight too.
- Elbows and knees – These joint areas are usually forgotten during sunscreen application, but these areas darken faster than the rest, and are also prone to dryness.
- Lips and eyelids – Also try to apply sunscreen on your eyelids as well, but of course, be very careful so that no product gets into the eyes. The sun shines directly above you, so your eyes, nose and mouth are vulnerable to the sun’s rays. For your lips, apply an SPF-infused lip balm for protection.
You should probably know that sunscreen isn’t going to last all day, so make sure to bring it with you and reapply throughout the day. When you’re swimming or going in the waters, every two hours is recommended. Set an alarm to reapply your products if you’re not good at remembering it.
Your skin needs moisture inside and out, especially during the hot summer days. Drink lots of water. If it gets boring for you, try adding some fresh fruits or cucumbers to your water for additional flavor and nutrients. You can also opt for electrolyte-filled beverages like coconut water . When it comes to snack time, choose moisture-dense foods like fruit smoothies, fresh watermelon, and leafy green salads. Keeping your body moisturized by refreshing drinks and foods will help your skin look healthy and feel moisturized, and prevent heat exhaustion.
Put conditioner and avoid shampooing after a day at the beach.
Before swimming in the pool or ocean, use conditioner for your hair. Salt water is abrasive, and chlorine can be drying, so conditioning the hair before your trip keeps the hair moisturized and provide you with a buffer of protection. And even if you’re not planning to swim in the waters, sweat can also be drying so conditioner can help.
After swimming in salt water, skip the shampoo and opt for a thorough rinse followed by conditioner. Shampoo is drying, and you don’t want to add more dryness to your hair already exposed to the harmful, drying sun’s rays. But if you swam in a chlorine pool, shampooing and conditioning as usual is recommended because it’s not a good idea to leave the chemicals and dirt in your hair.