A survivor’s beauty guide to the monsoon.
The perfect weather to stay under the sheets. The perfect weather to read a good book. The perfect weather for a hot cuppa.
It is however, NOT the perfect weather for your skin and hair. Your skin goes totally out of whack. Your hair takes a turn for the worse. But you can beat the monsoon beauty blues. Here are some beauty tips and tricks to stop the rain from ruining your look.
At the end of a rainy day, your skin will feel more grimy and yuck. That’s because all the dirt and pollution in the air literally sticks to it. So make sure you clean it thoroughly.
An oil cleanser (yes, even if you have oily skin) will do the best job. That’s because oil dissolves oil. So all the oily gunk that’s stuck in your pores will all come out.
If you can’t get yourself to try cleansing oils, maybe you should try micellar water. Micellar water is made of ‘micelles’ or teeny-tiny oil molecules suspended in water. These tiny micelle particles cling on to make-up (even waterproof kind), sebum and impurities in your skin and dissolve them. And that’s not the best part! You don’t need to rinse. Just soak a cotton pad and swipe it all over your face. That’s it. You’re done. Your skin will be absolutely clean and non-greasy. Micellar waters are gentle enough for even sensitive skin. Perfection!
Stuff I swear by: Shu Uemura Cleansing Oils are amazing. Check out my review to get the lowdown. La Roche Posay has super Micellar Waters.
Remove all complexion-dulling dead skin cells, blackheads, grease and impurities by simply using a face scrub twice a week. When you exfoliate, you remove all the dead skin cells and reveal newer, healthier cells, which give you that gorgeous glow. Just always remember to not get carried away. Your skin should feel smooth and fresh after a scrub, never red or raw. I use minimum pressure while scrubbing my face. Just let the beads do the hard work – for just 1 minute – no more, no less.
If you aren’t already using a toner, now’s the time to start. When it comes to toners, choose one that’s meant specifically for your skin problem. Apart from prepping your skin to better absorb all the nutrient rich products that will follow, the right toner can make a big difference to how your skin reacts to the rainy weather.
If your skin gets all oily and sticky, a toner containing salicylic or glycolic acid helps sweep up any extra sebum from your pores, so that your enlarged pores are tightened and not so visible.
If your skin is dry, a hydrating toner containing hyaluronic acid adds an extra boost of moisture to plump your skin and reduce that tight, dry feeling.
If your skin is sensitive and prone to rashes and flare-ups, a toner with skin calming ingredients like chamomile, calendula or green tea helps lessen the redness, inflammation and itchiness.
Tip: Avoid alcohol-based toners like the plague! They may make your skin feel all squeaky clean, but they do more harm than good. They strip your skin, irritate its protective barrier and even trigger more oil production to make up for the loss. Stay away!
Is the rainy weather making your skin greasier and shinier? All that moisture in the air is to blame. But don’t ditch your moisturizer just yet. You will only make matters worse.
Your skin needs hydration (even the moist weather) and by skipping the moisturizing, it goes into starvation mode and produces even more oil to make up for the loss. Instead, use lightweight mattifying or gel moisturizers that will regulate your oil production so that your skin doesn’t produce too much sebum. Also, carry blotting papers in your bag to keep the greasies away.
For those with dry skin, the rainy season can make matters worse. Strange as it seems, the rains tend to have a dehydrating effect on dry skin.
So hydrating serums and moisturizers are your rainy-weather pals. Anti-oxidant and vitamin-rich serums are water-based so they are quickly absorbed by your skin and go down to the deepest layers to nourish it.
Moisturizers on the other hand, seal in all the goodness by creating a barrier on top of the skin to prevent the moisture from leaving.
Tip: Apply the serum and moisturizer immediately after your hydrating toner (while your skin is still damp) to maximize the moisturizing effect.
So you don’t see the sun… but that doesn’t mean it’s not there! Harmful sunrays penetrate clouds, raindrops, glass, windows… you are never safe. Protect yourself from premature wrinkles, collagen breakdown brown spots… by always using a sunscreen with a minimum of SPF 30. And do carry around an actual umbrella for added protection from the sun and rain!
Stuff I swear by: Shiseido Gentle Sun Protection Lotion (for sensitive skin and babies) is super light, non-greasy, water resistant and really gentle on my skin. Take a peek at my review to know more about it. Designer umbrellas by BOSKY are really fun & quirky and always make me want to sing in the rain. The perfect pick-me-up on a dull wet day. Check them out at www.boskystore.com
That’s one question you should always ask before stepping out during the monsoon. Whether it’s sunscreen, foundation, mascara or eyeliner – waterproof is a must! You don’t want to be caught with black tears or blotchy skin.
Avoid the face-melting effect when your foundation meets the rain. If possible, give your skin a break and just go barefaced. If that’s not an option, switch the foundation with a tinted moisturizer or sunscreen. Make sure you really blend it in so that it will stay put longer. If your skin gets really greasy, use a mineral powder instead. Again, the trick is in the blending. You don’t want a powdered face, just a matte one. So blend blend blend for a flawless finish.
The rains tend to dry out your lips. So coat them with a generous helping of lip balm containing beeswax or petroleum jelly so keep all the moisture locked in.
Stuff I swear by: Rosebud Lip Salves are amazing! They keep your lips petal soft and oh-so-plump. See my review to make sure your puckers stay in top condition.
When rain beats down, it’s your hair that takes the real beating. Straight hair gets wavy, wavy hair turns curly and curly hair gets…well, curlier! And then there’s that dreaded frizz that takes over. So how do you manage your tresses during the rains?
Start from the beginning. The more moisture your hair has, the less it will frizz. Wash your hair with a gentle shampoo and then deep condition it with a mask. Leave it in for as long as you can before rinsing it with cool (never warm or hot water). You want to seal the cuticles, not open them. Open cuticles means more frizz. Also, while towel drying, dab and blot your hair gentle, never ruffle it. While your hair is still damp, seal it with an anti-frizz serum or oil. Rub it in the palms of your hands before smoothing it on your hair with long, light strokes, depositing more at the ends.
Now remember, don’t fight your hair type when it’s raining. You will end up losing the battle as the moisture in the air will return your hair to its original state. Instead work with its natural texture. If its wavy or curly, then stick with waves or curls. DON’T try to straighten it.
The best thing to do is try styles that require minimum effort but look super chic. Like a loose side-braid, a twisted ponytail or a messy bun. Add a hair accessory and you’re good to go!
Stuff I swear by: I love Moroccan Oil. It reduces the frizz while keeping my hair soft, shiny and smelling absolutely divine. Check out my review for more.