“Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate.”
— William Shakespeare
Just as Shakespeare asserts, summer is the most beautiful time of year.
At this time, nature puts on its finest, most colorful displays; incredible blooms dazzle our eyes, butterflies dance, the birds sing, the ocean shimmers and everything looks more radiant than any other time of year.
Not to be left out, people feel compelled to join in and present the finest version of themselves, too. There is a desire to feel (and look) amazing for all those summer parties, festivals, weddings and vacations.
However, all that getting out and enjoying the summer on top of juggling careers, family life and household tasks, means getting too short on time, too; in fact, more than ever.
This means super low-maintenance — but also super effective — beauty routines are the order of the day. To keep you looking your best this summer even when you’re a little short on time, here’s a guide on how you can look and feel amazing with minimal time and effort:
True Beauty Comes from Within
Never were truer words ever spoken. When somebody feels happy and confident from within, they radiate a magical glow. To look your best, you need to feel your best.
So, definitely prioritize self-care this summer. Look after both your physical and mental wellbeing to feel and look super healthy. Remember, the healthier you look, the fewer products and make-up you’ll feel the need to apply.
Go out, have fun
So, the first priority is to take your focus away from any stresses you have going on in your life and place them, as much as possible, on doing the things that make you feel good. So, fill your summer diary with lots of catch-ups with friends and favorite people, visits to your happy places, plenty of time for hobbies and anything else you love doing.
Remember that an all-natural smile does more for your face than any facial or make-up could ever accomplish.
Next on the list for achieving an all-natural healthy glow is sleep. Get enough sleep and not only will you feel more energetic and cheerful, but you’ll also look radiant and alert. Plus, you’ll save time on your make-up routine, because you won’t feel any urgent need to brighten tired skin or conceal dark circles under your eyes.
Eat and drink healthily
Summertime is when healthy, local produce is at its finest, so make the most of the season and fill up on delicious fruits and vegetables. Nourish your body with the right nutrients for a healthy summer glow.
Vitamin C, A and E are all vital for healthy, clear skin. They work as antioxidants to repair and reduce skin damage. By eating a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, you’ll get plenty of these vitamins.
Aim to ‘eat a rainbow’ to maximize the range of vitamins consumed. However, dark, leafy greens like spinach and kale are particularly good sources of these skin-friendly vitamins, as are citrus fruits and avocados.
Omega-3 fatty acids are also important for skin health. If you suffer from dry skin, try to up the amount of omega-3 in your diet as these fatty acids influence the skin’s ability to hold water. Good sources include oily fish like salmon, nuts and olive oil.
Water, and plenty of it, is also essential for healthy, plumped up skin. During the summer, you’ll need to take on more water to combat the higher temperatures. Being dehydrated will make you feel tired and run-down, too. So, to manage a full summer schedule and have amazing skin, make sure you drink enough fluids to avoid dehydration.
Get Into Good Skincare Habits
Aside from all of the above, to get healthy, clear skin you need a great skincare routine.
Formulating a routine might seem labor intensive at first, but it will quickly become second nature. And remember, the more time you invest in preventing problem skin, the less time you’ll need to spend correcting and concealing skin troubles.
Many people find their skin behaves differently during the summer months. Some find that higher temperatures result in oilier skin, whereas others find the extra sun exposure drying. Plus, extra sweat can exacerbate skin problems further. Therefore, it may be necessary to alter your skincare routine for the summer.
A basic routine should always involve cleansing and moisturizing twice daily, plus exfoliation, as appropriate.
Cleansing removes the effects of pollution, sweat, makeup and other impurities from your pores. Going to sleep before clearing your skin of the day’s makeup and dirt will mean a breakout is much more likely. The long-term results of a good cleansing routine are much clearer, fresher skin.
Look for a cleanser that suits your skin type, makes your skin feel good, and that you enjoy using. Some people prefer a milk-type cleanser, others a water-based cleanser, and some prefer a facial wash.
Exfoliation smoothens the surface of the skin by removing dead skin cells. Avoiding dry, dull, flaky skin and getting your skin looking its best is important if you want to cut back on your makeup routine. Therefore, exfoliation is well worth the time.
There are several types of exfoliating products available. Many can be quite harsh on the skin, so they should only be used once or twice a week. A popular, gentler alternative is exfoliating pads soaked with glycolic acid. They are super quick to use and many are gentle enough to be used daily. They help remove excessive oil, too.
Moisturizing plumps up skin and prevents dry, flaky patches, plus it leaves skin feeling great.
Lightweight moisturizers that absorb quickly work much better for summer. Heavy creams can leave your skin feeling sticky as the excess of cream tends to mix with the sweat and extra oil you may produce in warmer temperatures.
Always add some extra protection for your skin by picking a moisturizer with SPF that guards against both UVA and UVB damage.
The importance of protecting your skin with an SPF lotion can never be understated. Aside from helping protect you from the danger of skin cancer, a good SPF lotion will also guard against the signs of aging, including fine lines and sun spots.
Even if your moisturizer and foundation include an SPF element, always wear a separate specially-designed SPF lotion on your face that is suitable for your skin type and the climate you live in. Protect your body, too, and remember to reapply these lotions regularly. It’s too important to be omitted any day.
Strip Back Makeup Routines
Let’s face it, heavy makeup and summer aren’t a great mix. First of all, higher temperatures mean makeup is more likely to slide or melt right off. Then, your favorite summertime places — the pool and beach — and makeup are an even more troublesome mix.
Who wants to reapply their makeup every time they step out of the water? Finally, summer makeup trends are usually about ‘less is more’ and a natural look.
So, save time and cut back on the products you use. Here are some suggestions for a summer makeup routine:
- Whenever possible, choose products that can be quickly applied or reapplied using just your fingers to avoid carrying a large makeup bag during your travels.
- Show off your natural glow by skipping foundation completely or using the lightest one you feel comfortable with. Your skin will thank you for wearing less makeup by looking and feeling much better.
- Use a light-weight liquid concealer to reduce redness and minimize dark circles. Stick concealers can look too heavy or sticky for summer time. Liquid concealers tend to have a much more dewy, fresh finish.
- Add a hint of extra color or shimmer to your skin. A touch of bronzer on the cheekbones, browbones, and down the bridge of the nose adds a sunkissed vibe.
- Brush up brows to keep them neat and tidy but go easier on brow makeup at this time of year to get a natural look.
- Add a coat or two of mascara to open up your eyes. For extra oomph, you could curl your lashes beforehand.
- Keep lips moisturized with balm. If you like to wear color on your lips, a lightweight lipstick in a natural color looks amazing for summer, but then so can a pop of vibrant color. Dark, berry type shades are generally best left for winter.
Switch Up Your Hair Care Routine
Just like your skincare routine, your hair care routine should focus on prevention rather than cure. Summertime can be hard on your hair, as both sunshine and swimming can be really drying for the tresses. Pool chlorine, saltwater and UV rays all weaken hair strands.
However, there’s no need to avoid summer fun for the sake of your hair. There are plenty of quick fixes. Here are some easy-to-follow tips to keep your tresses looking amazing all summer long:
- Consider temporarily switching to a shampoo and conditioner designed for dry, damaged hair, even if you wouldn’t normally need to. This’ll give your hair the boost it needs at this time.
- Spritz in a leave-in conditioner before heading out into the sun or into the water to seal in moisture.
- Go for a low-maintenance cut that looks great without the need for ironing or curling tools. Reducing heat styling will not only save you time, but it’ll also help you maintain good condition. Now is the time to make the most of your hair’s natural curl or wave.
- Use products that enhance your hair’s natural texture. Salt spray can give you those classic, whimsical, beachy waves wherever you are. Just make sure you pick a great quality salt spray, however, and don’t go overboard; just like the sea, these products can be drying on your hair.
- Learn some quick, easy, loose up-dos that look great and are comfortable to wear all day. Messy braids or messy buns are perfect because they have that romantic, dressed-down look for summer, and they don’t pull or tear hair either.
- Frizz is the bane of summer hair, especially air-dried styles. To combat it, ditch the brush and try combing hair with a wide tooth comb after washing. Definitely invest in a great anti-frizz product to spritz through whenever you need it. Look for one that will help condition your tresses.
Invest Time in Professional Treatments
Salon treatments may not seem like a quick fix, but there are really good reasons to head to the salon this summer as part of your low maintenance routine: professional treatments generally last a lot longer. This means time saved. Not only that, salon treatments look or work better as well. Plus, getting some work done at a salon is relaxation time for you, too.
Here are a few treatments that would make a wise time investment for anyone looking for a low-maintenance summer beauty routine:
A Deep Conditioning Hair Treatment
Combat frizz and sun damage by getting professional hair treatment. A Brazilian blowout treatment is ideal for summer because it smoothes hair, eliminates frizz and adds shine for up to 12 weeks. This means amazing hair, all summer, without the fuss!
Lash and Brow Treatments
For summer, consider making a trip to the salon for treatments that will enable you to wear less makeup. Semi-permanent treatments don’t wash away in the pool or ocean either.
Lash and brow tints are perfect for looking more groomed with less time investment. They usually last from four to six weeks, so they are an ideal treatment to grab before your summer vacation.
To save time on your makeup routine, you could also try an LVL lash treatment. LVL stands for ‘length, volume and lift.’ This treatment does the job of enhancing your natural lashes just like your lash curlers, but better! It’s perfect for getting natural-looking lashes and a popular alternative to lash extensions. Results should last around six weeks.
Waxing or Threading
Forget about hair removal for the rest of the summer by heading to the salon for waxing treatments. Waxing usually lasts for a month to six weeks, depending on your hair growth cycle (it can vary greatly from person to person). This is certainly longer than any other hair removal method and the results are much smoother, too.
Forget constantly needing to reapply nail color every couple of days at home by visiting the salon to get your nails done. Unlike DIY polish, you won’t need to worry about endless nicks, chips and smudges with a salon treatment. Semi-permanent nail polishes, like shellac or NSI gel nail polish look incredible for around two weeks, so they are ideal for your vacation plans.
Less is More this Summer
Looking and feeling amazing this summer is all about focusing on your health and wellbeing. So, make time to look after yourself, and you will see a difference in your skin, hair and nails.
Your mantra should be ‘beach, not bathroom’.
So, to achieve this, focus on using just a few high-quality products as part of strict but basic haircare and skincare routines. And make time to visit the salon for a few professional treatments that last.
Hillary Kozma is the Owner/Managing Director/Creative Director of Kozma & Kozma Salon. Having built the foundation of her skills with an apprenticeship under a direct protege of Vidal Sassoon, Hillary and her husband opened Glow American Salon in Qatar in 2007 before expanding to Dubai as Kozma & Kozma in 2016. Hillary is hailed by the media as a “pioneer in her field” for introducing new talents, concepts, philosophies, and techniques to the Middle East.