On June 21st, it's the summer solstice and the first official day of summer. This is when the sun reaches its peak point in the sky and it gives us the most beautiful and longest day of the entire year. True summer sunshine is incoming!
For me, whenever the summer solstice starts to approach, I know that it’s time to make sure that I am really feeling my best and preparing my skin, hair and body for the hotter, drier and dehydrated summer months that are approaching. While the summer sees me going over to Europe and honestly having the best time, I always want to make sure I’m prepared because I personally believe that no one really thinks about how they can prepare their hair and skin for the summer until it’s too late - at which point we end up with super dehydrated and damaged hair and skin
In today’s blog I’m going to take you through the Agent Summer Edit on everything you need to think about in order to get summer ready so you can come out the other side with the healthiest skin, hair and body that you have ever had.
Hydrate (from the inside out) -
First up, I want everyone to understand that just because you are drinking lots of water, doesn’t mean you are hydrated - and this can be a major problem because dehydration is much more than a skin deep issue. Yes, dehydrated skin is not what anyone wants this summer, but dehydration can really impact every organ in your body - as well as your beautiful face. My first tip for the summer is to understand that there is much more to hydration than just water consumption - both before you travel, and when you are in the sun. Evidence is starting to show that effective water consumption is not just about how much water you drink but, instead, is about effectively delivering water and electrolytes at the cellular level through cellular hydration. Head here to read our blog on cellular hydration and how you can make sure that you are entering summer properly hydrated - not just full of water. For me, I love to travel or get ready for the hotter months with electrolytes and minerals - they’re a key part of my hydration kit.
Prepare your skin against the sun -
Getting the right products is a key part of getting your summer skincare essentials nailed down. For me, cleansing is critical because I find that the humidity and sweat can leave my face feeling super greasy and dirty, as well as all of the oils and impurities that can build up on the face as you adventure round whatever city you are exploring! For me, my cleansing duo is so important to me Too often, the process of cleansing the face is done in a rush and involves nothing more than a makeup remover wipe but for me, a double cleanse with the Agent acid (wash) lactic acid brightening cleanser and holi (cleanse) cleansing face oil is exactly where I would advise to start in the hotter, sweatier, summer months. When I’m at home, I am often kinda wary of cleansing every single morning but in the summer, it’s a totally different story. I love getting rid of all of the residue from the day and I’ll even cleanse twice a day.
Normally, I also love to add in my mask - Holi (bright) - at least 3x a week as well. I always leave it on overnight and this is perfect for cooling your skin post-sun exposure. This mask has revolutionized my skin and it's the first summer that I’m going to have it in my make up bag. I have used retinol and P50 / prescription Retin-A and SPF for over a decade (inspired by my Mother who has the most beautiful skin and used Retin-A since she was 22 years old and literally has not wrinkled until she was about 57 years old) but since I have formulated holi(bright) I have stopped using retinol and P50 which is honestly insane and I can’t even quite believe it myself. I’m in love with the unique combination of aloe vera, french silk peptides, pitaya, hyaluronic acid, and cucumber and it is sooo cooling. Perfect for the summer.
Everyone knows I also am obsessed with holi (body) and it’s part of my daily self worship and nourishment routine. holi (body) becomes even more important to me in the summer months when I’m prepping my legs post-shave for the sun.
Prepare your hair against sun, sand and chlorine
Something that really no one talks about is how the ocean, the sun and chlorine destroy hair. These substances totally suck the moisture out of hair and create the most brittle hair strands ever.
On top of this, salt water can really damage your hair too because it dries out your hair and scalp. It strips water and this lack of moisture not only on the scalp but also on the hair can lead it to splitting, breaking and increased dandruff. Salt is hygroscopic (which means that it attracts more water onto your head and can form salt crystals) actually in turn pulls more water out of the hair. This salt can also reduce the links between the cysteine bonds in each hair follicle, making it more fragile and more easy to break. For me, holi (locks) and hair (silk) are going to be a huge part of my hair health routine this summer and I *love* mixing holi (locks) and hair (silk) together before I go to the beach or pool to protect my mane. It keeps it silky, smooth, shiny, and gives the best waves when I style it out later that evening. These two products are different so let me give you a quick run down.
hair (silk) is our first-ever serum for styling, smoothing, softening, and repairing hair. It is a jasmine & amber-infused lightweight silk peptide hair serum that delivers strong, smooth, and shiny hair, while also protecting your mane against future damage. The serum is both restorative and protective which is exactly what you need after a hot day in the sun.
holi (locks) is a strengthening treatment oil that promotes the look of hair growth. It is a treatment oil and is NOT a styling oil. I like to apply to damp hair and I allow it to air dry. I apply to the scalp and massage it through the ends. I leave it on for an entire day so it’s perfect for wearing to the beach as a mask.
Together, these are a dream combo for preparing and maintaining your hair during the summer months and you can wear them to the beach which is one of my favorite things about them.
- Protect against sun damage & remove sun spots
Preparing in advance and sorting out your non toxic sunscreen is a critical part of this journey too (and I am so excited to release our non-toxic Agent Nateur sunscreen coming soon!).
As well as preparing my skin against the intense sun in the summer months with a good, high quality, non toxic sunscreen, I also love to use Vitamin C in the form of our Agent Nateur holi (c) which is holi (c) is calcium and vitamin C in their most stable, potent state.
High quality Vitamin C is the gold standard ingredient when considering sun exposure because it is perhaps the most potent topical antioxidant against sun damage & against melasma.
A good quality Vitamin C neutralizes free radical damage and protects the skin against UV light and other environmental aggressors, as well as blocking abnormal production of pigmentation to even skin tone and fade dark spots. This, mixed with the fact that our Agent Vitamin C is of the highest quality and when mixed with our hyaluronic acid based holi (water) it turns into the most beautiful, moisturizing, deeply hydrating and rejuvenating experience that regenerates your skin so much more powerfully than other product combinations out there on the market.
The longer you use vitamin C topically the more benefits it can bring too, because sun damage stems from deeper in the skin at the level of the melanocytes. So, working with Vitamin C as part of your skincare regime in the longer term can help you to reduce the damage you will see as summer draws to a close by making your skin more protected in the long term.
Vitamin C is a critical part of my routine to avoid the development of these sun spots (as I have fair skin).
Cool post-sun exposure - finally, hyaluronic acid is the missing piece of your post sun, sand and skincare challenges. Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring molecule found in the body and it binds to water. What is so special about it is that it can carry a greater water volume than the volume of itself. This means that it delivers MAXIMUM hydration! It plumps your skin, smooths out fine lines, and actively replenishes the skin's surface to help it appear firmer. For me, holi (water), our pearl and rose hyaluronic essence, is such a lush product for ultimate hydration thanks to the hyaluronic base.
holi (water) was formulated using organic plant extracts, precious minerals, and natural acids to improve the skin's elasticity, tighten pores, and gently remove dead cells to reveal a hydrated, dewy glow. At Agent, we use a large molecular size of our hyaluronic acid, which is why it works so well because it can carry a greater water volume than most hyaluronic acids on the market.
Guys - there is so much info here but breaking down your hair and skin and considering protection and nourishment before, during and after sun exposure is a really important part of looking after your skin over the next few months.
My top product recommendations are all linked above so you can check out the full ingredients list and how to use them.
I hope that my product recommendations help and I can tell you from my own experience that these combinations really are heavy hitters - they give you exactly what you need, in the formulations that work, particularly for these powerful summer months that we are about to enter.
With love on this beautiful solstice,