If you’re about to head off on vacation, it’s important to make sure your skin is properly protected from the heat. Take a look at our top tips for staying safe in the sun - before you even get on the plane.
Pre-holiday skin prep: how to tan safely
So, your airplane tickets are booked, your suitcase is almost packed, you’ve found a sitter for the dog: now, you’re just days away from living it up somewhere hot and sunny! If you’re planning on spending a lot of time on the beach, it’s important to prep your skin in the days leading up to your departure. Skin that’s properly hydrated is far less likely to suffer from symptoms linked to sunburn, including inflamed or cracked skin. The reason? The more moisture your epidermis is able to retain, the better it can fight against exposome-related damage, including UV rays and pollution. Without hydration, your skin’s elasticity and barrier functions start to suffer, so show your skin some love with a body lotion post-shower. Spots linked to sun exposure - known as the ‘rebound effect’ - result from a thickening of the epidermis after too much exposure so exfoliate regularly to avoid a buildup of sebum that could lead to breakouts.
 Etude expérimentale sur les effets des UV sur la peau. L’Oréal Research & Development, mars 2007 (19 sujets), Etude UV et couche cornée Cunliffe, W. J.; Burton, J. L.; Shuster, S. The effect of local temperature variations on the sebum excretion rate. Br. J. Dermatol. 1970, 83, 650-654.
Looking after your skin throughout your vacation
First things first: hydration! If you’re headed for a long-haul flight, don’t forget to top up skin’s moisture levels with a quick spritz of hydrating facial mist while on the plane, since air pressure in the cabin has a tendency to dry skin out. When it comes to cleansing skin post-flight, consider your skin type. If your skin is prone to oily patches, cleansing twice-daily with a formulation enriched with astringents to dry out excess sebum can help, while dryer skin should opt for cream-based cleansers to restore skin’s moisture levels after a grueling journey.
It’s best to start thinking about sun protection as soon as you land, especially if your flight arrives in the middle of the day when the sun is at its peak (between 11am and 3pm). Idéal Soleil’s Fresh Face Mist doesn’t just feature SPF 50, but is enriched with antioxidants to help counteract the negative effects of UV-related pollution - great if you’re travelling onward by train or car. Finally, remember to drink enough water: when it comes to looking after parched summer skin, it’s best to work from the inside out. Finally, applying a nourishing body butter or cream rich in moisturising ingredients is crucial to avoid dry or flaky patches while strengthening skin against potential UV damage.