I felt it in the air this morning …a slight coolness. In Southern California that can only mean one thing….Fall is here! I know that in other areas of the country there are more dramatic signs like colored falling leaves and kids going off to school with jackets on, but here in Orange County we have very subtle seasons. When my husband first moved here from Scotland, he didn’t even notice the seasons for the first 8-10 years, and then finally he got it. There is a slight crispness to the air, which only comes in the evening, and is gone by 8 am, when we are once again in the heat. September is our hottest month of the year, and our children typically end up starting school in late August and early September in shorts and a t-shirt! So how does the changing season affect our skin and our routine? Here are my tips for the changing seasons.
1. Be ready for anything!
If you live in the hotter parts of the country, like the south, you may still be in the heat when you step outside, but indoors the air conditioning may be cranked. After a long, hot summer, your skin may be getting sluggish or dull looking after the transition from hot to cool. Be prepared by continuing to wear sunscreen and stay out of the heat if you can, but remember to exfoliate a couple of times a week or as needed to keep your skin from getting dull. Follow with a moisturizer to protect your skin from the environment.
2. Stock up on winter essentials
If you are already feeling the cold where you live, you may already need to stock up for winter. Make sure you have a thicker, richer moisturizer on hand, or if you continue with your daily moisturizer, but aren’t already using a good night cream, be sure to add that to your routine. Keeping the skin protected from the cold, and deeply moisturized and hydrated is especially important in the winter months. If you are out of lib palm, time to stock up on that as well, and avoid long, drying baths, keeping your body cleansing and exfoliation to a warm shower.
3. Add another layer to your night routine
At this time of the year, when the seasons are changing, my skin really wants marula oil. I add two drops to my hands after I apply my night cream, and press it into my face, especially my forehead (which is the driest area of my face) and my décolleté. This wonderful oil is sourced from South Africa through a fair trade agreement, where the women there have been using it to protect their skin from the elements for centuries. It can be used alone, just 2 drops does the whole face, leaving skin velvety soft and not oily.
4. Take a walk in a fog bank!
Here in the coastal cities of Southern California, we start getting lots of fog at this time of the year. Taking a morning walk on the beach, before the sun burns the fog away, can be very beneficial to the skin, adding moisture to the face. If you don’t have a fog bank, consider adding a toner to your routine. Toners add a splash of hydration, but many also contain beneficial ingredients like rose water, hydrosols and active botanicals and vitamins to perk up the skin and keep it moist. Some toners are full of alcohol, and are used to wipe off residual makeup after cleansing, but alcohol is not needed for this task, and can aggravate sensitive skin. Instead, look for a spray toner containing witch hazel to help clean pores, and follow with a good moisturizer.
Wherever you are, we hope that you take time to smell the air, take a long walk, admire the changing leaf colors if you have them, and take some time for yourself to embrace the fall. This is a time when we can all take a moment to slow down just a little. I’m going to take my own advice now, and go have a nice warm cup of tea, sit out in the front, and watch the ocean.
Bye for now!