7 Summer Skincare Essentials to Add to Your Shopping List

With temperatures rising, your skincare needs will inevitably change. Fortunately, we’re out of chapped skin season, but we could round the corner into sun-damaged skin season if we’re not careful. This time of year, it’s hard to strike the right balance between caring for the skin and using lightweight formulas that are comfortable and don’t wipe away with sweat.

When the sun’s blazing, you’ll want to feel comfortable in your own skin, as well as protected from the elements. Look good and feel even better with these seven summer skincare essentials.

1. An effective face wash

Get your skin clean and remove all your sunscreen with a gentle yet effective face wash. Dirt, pollution, sunscreen and makeup all have to come off your face in order for it to heal properly at night. Try a formula loaded with antioxidants, like Pacifica’s Sea Foam Complete Face Wash, to reverse the damage that free radicals do to the skin during time spent outside.  

Buy it now: Sea Foam Complete Face Wash from Pacifica Beauty, $10

2. A dry body oil

You’ll want your skin to look dewy and fresh over the summer but not greasy. Dry body oil will help your skin feel nice and moisturized without getting all over your lightweight summer dresses. Try one that doubles as a perfume like the exotic blend of grapefruit and pink peppercorn in the Monastery’s Lapiz Matte Body Oil.

Buy it now: Lapiz Matte Body Oil from Monastery, $52

3. A vitamin C serum

Vitamin C is a skincare essential year-round, but it’s particularly important when dealing with sun damage. Getting your vitamin C in an oil formula, rather than a water-based formula, helps maintain a higher percentage stability of the vitamin throughout the use of your bottle. Try a formula like Biossance’s Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil for an all-in-one skincare serum with antioxidant protection and moisture that won’t leave your skin looking greasy.

Buy it now: Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil from Biossance, $72

4. A gentle body scrub

Before any self-tanning takes place, you’ll want to exfoliate gently. A gentle body scrub will help ensure there are no streaky areas, particularly around the knees, feet and ankles. Pick a formula with nourishing skincare oils and you won’t need to add a layer of lotion once you get out of the shower (and your self-tanner will go on more smoothly).

Buy it now: Scrub Scrub Scrub from Lush, $18

5. A faux tanner

Fake the glow without the damage to your skin. Organic Pharmacy’s Self Tan is a rare formula that you can actually use on the face and body. With a soothing and hydrating blend of aloe, shea butter and coconut oil, it feels more like a lotion than a self-tanner.

Buy it now: Self Tan from The Organic Pharmacy, $69

6. An after-sun spray

Even though you should try to keep your sun exposure to a minimum, a certain amount is inevitable. Cool down the skin after a hot day in the sun with a natural, aloe-based soothing spray to help repair stressed skin, like Herbivore Botanicals After Sun Soothing Aloe Mist. Although this is meant for the body, it’s gentle enough to use on your face too.

Buy it now: After Sun Soothing Aloe Mist from Herbivore, $20

7. A sunscreen balm

Sunscreen and a skincare balm in one? It may sound too good to be true, but AKT Therapy developed an all-natural sunscreen in a balm formula that melts into the skin, leaving no white cast whatsoever. This natural formula moisturizes with skincare oils while it protects from sun exposure. The antioxidants in the formula also help fight free radical damage.    

Buy it now: Elemental Sun Balm from AKT Therapy, $48

Lisa Bensley is the founder of BeautyByBenz, a health and beauty blog that is really just an excuse to buy too much makeup. When she is not writing, she's probably boxing, obsessing over her Dachshund, Stanley, reading, or binge-watching Law & Order: SVU. Follow her (and Stanley's) antics on Instagram.