Summer has officially arrived in India, and it's time to abandon the heavy, bulky apparel in favour of lighter, brighter options; the same goes for skin care. It's time to ditch the heavy moisturisers and serums in favour of lighter skincare products to ensure that the skin stays protected and nourished during the harsh summer heat.

Changing your skincare routine from winter to summer isn't just about protecting one’s skin; it's also about keeping it healthy and glowing from within. We're all aware that excessive sun exposure causes skin to age prematurely. Summer also causes the skin to cool down and produce more natural oil, which leads to clogged pores, acne, and breakouts; perspiration can also cause rashes and irritation. The remedy is simple: change your skincare routine.

Here are some tips suggested by Dr. Malvika Kohli, Director of "Skin Secrets", a Dermatology and Aesthetics Center, to maintain healthy, youthful skin this summer.

The first weapon in our arsenal should be SPF & PA+++ says Dr Malvika. “It cannot be emphasized enough regarding the importance of using a good sunscreen with sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or more which will protect us against ultraviolet radiation B (UVB). Also, we Indians are prone to tanning and ageing due to UVA radiation in sun light. Therefore, to protect ourselves from harmful effects of UVA we need to apply sunscreen with Protection grade of UVA denoted as PA +++ or more.”

Her next suggestion is the usage of an appropriate Moisturizer. She further adds, “Although many of us opt not to use moisturizer during this season as we are sweaty, it is of utmost importance to moisturize our skin to protect it from dehydration due to heat as well as air conditioner.”

She then turns her attention towards Vitamin C and Exfoliating Agents. “To keep our skin even tone and protect from ultra violet rays it is advised to apply topical 20% L-ascorbic acid (vitamin C) everyday in the morning before sunscreen application,” says Dr Malvika about Vitamin C. She further adds, “To prevent break outs and to keep skin younger looking one should apply topical exfoliative agents like glycolic acid, lactic acid, AHA and BHA.”

Summer is also a time when most Indians go on holidays and vacations. A change is scenery is often good for the mind however, it can have negative affect on one’s skin health. To offset these negative impacts of sun damage during holidays Dr Malvika suggests a simple routine. She says, “To keep things simple during vacation one can follow a simple routine of cleaning, sunscreen with SPF 50 and a brightening moisturizer. After vacation most of us feel tanned and dull, for this one should opt for leave on masks with niacinamide or hyaluronic acid.”

While taking care of the skin externally is a necessity during summers, however it is also highly advisable to take care of our skin internally. Experts suggest that a majority of skin diseases are treatable with good nutrition. As a result, including nutrients that can help balance the body's heat and toxin output while also keeping a healthy glow over the summer months is crucial.

When the heat becomes unbearable, we turn to the abundant fruits of the season for relief. This season is typically linked with fruits such as watermelon, mango, litchi, papaya, musk-melon, and others. These fruits are extremely beneficial to the health of our skin and hair, in addition to providing numerous other nutritional benefits (besides being low on calories).

Here are some summer special fruits that one must include in their diet to help create healthy skin during summer season.

Watermelon

Watermelon seeds are as nutritious as the fruit, if not more so. Watermelon contains a lot of antioxidants, which help combat the indications of ageing on the skin and make it look firmer, younger, and healthier. Furthermore, the seeds of the fruit contain unsaturated fatty acids such as linoleic acid, which help to keep the skin supple and youthful.

Pineapple

It is a fruit that is low in calories and high in fibre. Collagen production is boosted. It also helps the skin shed damaged and dead skin cells, resulting in a clear and healthy complexion. Pineapple is also beneficial to the skin since it contains antioxidants that combat free radical damage. Making this fruit a regular component of your diet will assist you in combating the signs of ageing and fine wrinkles on your skin.

Papaya

It is without a doubt one of the most well-known skin-care fruits. It is a common ingredient in many skin care products due to its high vitamin C concentration. It contains beta-carotene and lycopene, which are carotenoids. These nutrients work wonders for the skin when combined. They aid in the prevention of free radical damage, which results in wrinkles and other symptoms of ageing. When used directly on the face and body, papaya enhances skin texture and looks.

Grapefruit

It's a wonderful summer citrus fruit that is sometimes ignored. It has the highest concentration of Vitamin C, which is necessary for collagen synthesis in the skin. Grapefruit extracts are commonly used in skin and hair care products to treat dandruff and acne.

Organic ingredients

Beetroot, tamarind, sea buckthorn oil, and hyaluronic acid are among the most popular dry skincare ingredients. Sea buckthorn extract is high in vitamin E and is relatively unknown. It penetrates deep into the skin's layers, increasing water retention while also renewing and softening the tissues. Another lesser-known moisturising component is hyaluronic acid, which works wonders on all skin types and provides fullness to the skin, giving it a healthy, youthful appearance.

Having established the need for these nutrient rich fruits and ingredients it is also pertinent to speak about the most essential nutrient of them all, i.e. water. A rising trend in water consumption is usually beneficial during summer season. It not only keeps us hydrated internally and maintains the moisture level of our skin, but it also helps to prevent wrinkles in the long run. To keep your skin looking good, drink at least eight to nine glasses of water per day.

Do follow these simple tips and make your way to healthy and glowing skin during this summer season.