As the weather switches gears from summer to fall, so too should your skincare routine. Even if you found a way to maintain healthy, clear skin over the summer, the regimen you implemented over that period might not serve your skin as well when things cool down. Indeed, the cooler, drier air mixed with various autumn allergens can aggravate your skin. If you want to enjoy the awe-inspiring season of autumn without worrying about your appearance, here are some ways to get clearer skin this fall.
It’s important to keep your skin clean and moisturized year-round. When fall rolls around, however, you might need to increase these skincare efforts to more effectively combat dry skin and other fall-related skin problems. For starters, consider investing in a thicker moisturizer than the one you were using during summer. Oil-based moisturizers are often recommended for those with very dry skin, though they can contribute to acne breakouts for those with oily skin. As for your facial cleanser, there is no shortage of options for all skin types. Generally speaking, though, you’ll want to use a hydrating cleanser that’s free from irritating chemicals, fragrances, and residues. Your dermatologist can help you select the optimal moisturizer and cleanser for your skin and the season.
While some people experience more severe breakouts during summer, others have a harder time with acne during the fall and winter -- it all depends on your skin type and how it reacts to different environmental factors. If you struggle with acne during autumn, you’ll want to use an acne treatment that targets your specific type of acne without irritating your skin. For instance, mild acne is often best treated with topical benzoyl peroxide. Retinoids may be recommended for treating comedonal acne (i.e., blackheads). Inflammatory acne may require treatment via topical dapsone gel, and azelaic acid preparations can help fend off scar-inducing acne. Your dermatologist can help you best determine how to clear up acne during the fall.
Regular exfoliation is another important method for acne prevention and healthier skin overall. When performed properly, exfoliating your skin helps unclog your pores, removing dirt, oils, and dead skin cells. Of course, the frequency with which you exfoliate your skin and the products you use will depend on your skin type and time of year. Chemical exfoliants, which can be powerful and irritating, should only be used about once a week, whereas abrasive scrubs and brushes can be used a few times a week in many cases. Make sure you discuss fall exfoliation with your dermatologist before committing to a routine, as it’s possible to over-exfoliate. Also, certain types of exfoliation can exacerbate inflammatory acne.
Summer may be over, but the sun remains in the sky and therefore still threatens your skin. If you plan on enjoying the crisp autumn outdoors, make sure any exposed skin is protected via sunscreen (SPF 30+ is best) to prevent sun damage. After all, sun damaged skin can lead to discoloration, uneven texture and tone, and even skin cancer. If you want to maintain clear and healthy skin this fall, sun protection must remain a top priority.
Getting proper sleep every night is essential for maintaining clear, youthful skin. When we sleep, our bodies go into recovery mode, stimulating the skin’s healing process. Conversely, missing out on sleep time and time again can cause an inflammatory response, contributing to acne, deepening wrinkles, and more. Fortunately, fall weather delivers optimal sleeping conditions -- not so cold that you’re shivering all night and not so warm that you’re shedding blankets every ten minutes. Enjoy these advantageous conditions while they last and your skin will thank you.
Fall isn’t as fun when you’re dealing with skin problems. Let the skincare experts at North Pacific Dermatology help you find the right routine for your skin this fall. Set up a consultation with our team today.