Sorting out your skin in the summer can be a real headache. Between battling sweat, shielding yourself from the sun, and worrying about pesky bug bites, it's not always easy to know where to start with treatments. That's why we asked Joanna Vargas, natural beauty expert and celebrity facialist (her client list includes Emma Stone and Kiera Knightley), to let us in on a few easy, at-home treatments to soothe all your summer skin irritations. With recipes and ingredients coming straight from the aisles of your local health food store, these tips are skin-care gold!
Tip No. 1: Take a Raw Apple Cider Vinegar Bath
"You know when you go to bed with a bad sunburn and your skin feels like it's on fire? The raw apple cider vinegar will combat that burning sensation by re-balancing the PH of your skin."
Recipe: One cup of raw apple cider vinegar in tepid bathwater.
Tip No. 2: Make a Yogurt Compress
"A go-to for treating sunburn on the face is yogurt compresses. Yogurt is a natural anti-inflammatory and it will also reduce the burning sensation."
Recipe: Use any organic, full-fat yogurt on cotton or gauze. Leave it on your skin for 15 minutes.
Tip No. 3: Make an Oatmeal Compress
"Oatmeal will also help alleviate swelling and irritation. It's an anti-inflammatory, and full of antioxidants that will hydrate skin and soothe redness and itchiness."
Recipe: Cook the oats, let them cool, and apply on cotton or gauze. Leave it on your skin for 15 minutes, just as you would the yogurt compress.
Alleviate Bug Bites and Skin Irritations
Tip No. 1: Mix Peppermint Oil and Aloe
"Peppermint oil has been used for centuries for its exceptional cooling effects. It's also hydrating and will relieve redness."
Recipe: Mix two drops of peppermint oil with aloe straight from the leaf. Make a compress with cotton or gauze.
Tip No. 2: Rinse with Chamomile Tea
"Chamomile is a great reliever of any kind of itchiness and redness. It can come in handy if somebody has bug bites, if they're getting hives from a certain allergy, or have any irritated patches. It can also alleviate an itchy scalp."
Recipe: Prepare the tea and let it cool. Use it as a rinse in the shower.
Treat Clogged Skin
Tip No. 1: Eat Your Greens
"Green vegetables contain essential minerals that are great for the lymphatic system. Chlorophyll and oat grass juice oxygenate the skin, which helps keep it clear. If your lymphatic system is working properly then your skin is less likely to clog or break out. "
Recipe: Add one teaspoon of liquid chlorophyll to your water. Drink daily.
Tip No. 2: Shop Green Beauty Products
"OK, so this one's not already in your kitchen, but it's become popular for a lot of beauty lines to use kale, oat grass juice, and chlorophyll in skin-care products because it works to keep skin clear."
More Natural Treatments to Try
Block the Sun with Zinc Products
"A good ingredient to look out for in skin care is zinc because it helps your body control oil production. Zinc is in a lot of organic day creams because it blocks the sun, a natural SPF."
Joanna Suggests: Tomato Day Cream by Eminence Organics, $66, skin1.com.
Control Oil with Jojoba
"Another really good ingredient would be jojoba oil. Jojoba oil is most similar to our own sebum (the oil on the skin's surface). When you apply jojoba oil to the skin, you're essentially telling it that there's enough oil on the face already, and it doesn't need to produce more."
Joanna Suggests: Any jojoba oil you can buy at a health food store. Her own rejuvenating serum also includes jojoba oil and is useful for all skin types (Rejuvenating Serum, $100, joannavargas.com).