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Travel Skin Care Tips

Schweiger Dermatology Skin Travel tips

Winter Travel Skin Care Tips
Whether you’re headed to the mountains or the beach this winter, keeping your skin in shape while traveling is key to going #nofilter on all of your Instagram vacation pics. Follow these travel skin care tips and your skin will thank you. 

Your Skin at the Beach
“The most important aspects of adjusting to a beach climate are remembering to properly use sun protection and maintain adequate hydration,” advises Dr. Sandra Kopp, a dermatologist in Schweiger Dermatology Group’s Financial District dermatology office. “People prone to body and facial acne may want to bring their acne products and avoid known triggers.  Those with eczema may improve with the excess moisture in the air but sweating can cause bad flares and excess should be avoided. Chlorine in pools also is very drying to any skin type and should be washed off immediately after swimming followed by moisturizer application.  Elective creams that cause sensitivity to the sun, such as Retin-A , can be stopped a week prior to the trip if they are not careful with sun protection.

Beach Vacation Packing Essentials
Sunscreen, of course! Apply a broad-spectrum SPF 30 at least 30 minutes before sun exposure and reapply every two hours, especially after swimming or sweating.  “At least two tablespoons, or approximately one shot glass of sunscreen, should be used to cover the entire body, and if you are using a spray sunscreen remember to rub in the product to provide full coverage,” advises Dr. Kopp. “If possible, renting a local sun umbrella is always ideal.” If logging in hours at the pool or on the beach are part of the plan, then invest in some sun protective clothing and wide brimmed hats. Dr. Kopp also recommends packing ibuprofen, aloe, and hydrocortisone 1% in the event of a sunburn “Immediate use can decrease redness, swelling and discomfort,” she says. “But if you do not have access to these products, cold milk compresses can be beneficial to help soothe the skin after a burn as well.” And if you think you’re going to be tempted to let your skin tan, pack a self-tanner!

Your Skin on the Slopes:
“The sun is very strong when you’re skiing,” says Dr. Darrell S. Rigel, who sees patients from Schweiger Dermatology Group’s Murray Hill dermatology office. “In fact, in the valley in Vail in February, the sun is as strong as in Miami Beach and the sun at 11,00 square feet is as strong as it is in the islands,” says Dr Rigel, who spends many winter weekends and holidays at his house in Vail, Colorado.  “What you may to even realize is that 40% additional UV exposure comes from reflective snow, which is why it’s especially important to apply sunscreen under the chin,” Rigel advises. Your skin’s moisture levels can also take a beating while on the slopes. “Keep a layer of moisturizer on your face at all times,” says Dr. Rigel. “The cold weather can also trigger eczema thanks to low-humidity levels in the air and in the inside air from the forced hot air.”

Ski Vacation Skin Care Essentials:
The top travel skin care tip for a skin vacation is to use an SPF of at least 30 on exposed areas–and reapply often. “Sunscreen doesn’t last all day — you’ll need to reapply in the afternoon,” says Dr. Rigel. Another thing to watch out for is the security of your sunscreen cap. “When you’re at high altitude, make sure the cap to your sunscreen is on tight, as they can pop open at high altitude,” says Dr. Rigel. Don’t forget to pack a lip balm with SPF 30 to protect the lips. Also make sure a heavy moisturizer is in your luggage. Dr. Rigel also recommends bringing Vaseline to help protect exposed areas on the skin from frostbite. If you’re prone to eczema, it can’t hurt to bring an over the counter 1% hydrocortisone cream OTC to help ease any outbreaks. Dr. Rigel also suggests asking the front desk if they have a humidifier you can use. “The relative humidity of your hotel room is most likely going to be 10% or less,” he says. Low humidity makes for some less than stellar conditions for dry skin.

Your Skin on an Airplane
There are three important words to remember when flying the friendly skies: No airplane food. The sodium-laden meals found on commercial flights will rob your skin of its suppleness and help create raisin-like conditions on your face. Pack a fruit salad or some veggies to snack on, which are full of water and can help hydrate your skin from the inside out. Drinking lots of water during the flight can also help you feel not-so parched. Fly with a clean, makeup-free face so you can easily slather on moisturizer during the flight. If you must land with your “face on,” then stash a hydrating BB cream in your purse and apply it before landing.


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