When summer arrives in Dubai, the heat can be unbearable – and our skin suffers because of it
5 July 2018| Last updated on 1 October 2019
Thanks to the desert climate here, Dubai’s summer temperatures peak during May until September.
As a result, we’re left battling skin problems for almost 50% of the year, with a whole lot of dry and humid heat happening throughout those months.
Mix the temperatures with dust, sandstorms, humidity and wind, our poor faces can sometimes take a battering. We always say, there’s nothing like a Dubai sand-facial to help you break-out.
So, to help you ensure you protect your skin while living in Dubai, here’s 5 simple steps to follow:
Step 1. Protect against sunburn and sun damage
Perhaps the most obvious first step is to ensure you protect your skin – and this doesn’t just include your face – against the sun. In a country where the mercury can reach as high as 50 degrees Celsius, it’s extremely important to make sure your skin is protected against the sun’s rays with sun protection or sun block.
Many of us take for granted our susceptibility to sunburn; life in Dubai should mean our skin is used to our time on the beach, basking in sunshine? Sadly not.
Not only do you risk looking red and sore, but excessive sun exposure can increase your risk of skin cancer and premature ageing.
Even when it’s cloudy or dusty, you should protect your skin with a sunblock that offers protection from both UVA and UVB rays. To avoid the nasty stuff like skin pigmentation, wrinkles and skin cancer, always remember to apply sunscreen!
For an added boost when applying sunscreen…
Give your sunscreen a boost by looking for skin care products with antioxidants in them. These can help prevent cell damage caused by sun exposure and pollution.
Research shows that antioxidants in your skincare regime can help to:
- Improve cell function
- Increase collagen production
- Improve elasticity
- Create healthier skin cells
- Reduce sun damage
Not only that - if you’re at work 9-5, Sunday to Thursday, introduce a moisturiser with SPF in to double-up your protection in your morning beauty routine. Not only will this protect from the sun, but will keep your face hydrated as well – and we all know how horrible the A/C can be. Which leads us on to…
Step 2. Drink, drink, drink water! Stay hydrated
It’s SO important to stay hydrated at all times in a climate such as Dubai’s. Not only because of the sun and incredible heat outside, but also because we’re sat in chilly air-conditioning all day and all night.
We’re sure everybody can relate; too hot outside, too cold inside. A very popular complaint during a summer in the UAE.
Unbeknown to some, while you might be out of the sun’s reach, sitting in the A/C all day can play havoc on your skin. Which is why it’s important to keep water within reach at all times. Air conditioning can cause your skin to become incredibly dry, especially if you don’t moisturise regularly.
Another alternative to keeping your skin hydrated is carrying a face mist spray in your handbag. We particularly recommend a facial mist that has rose water in, as not only is it refreshing, but it is anti-inflammatory and helps maintain your skin’s PH balance.
Hydrate from within, too!
As we’ve all heard before, an important part of staying hydrated is eating good foods. Snacks like watermelons, melons, other fruits and vegetables help you get your H2O intake. Avoid inflammatory foods like excessive oil and dairy.
Step 3. Cleanse properly, and remove your make-up at night
One of the lessons we’ve learnt about skincare in Dubai (the hard way, we should add - breakouts!) is the importance of cleansing.
On a daily basis, Dubai’s dusty atmosphere is built up by sand and dirt blown around by winds. And when a sandstorm strikes, even worse! If you’re out and about, all of this muck will build up on your skin, and especially your face.
As a result, make sure you have a good cleansing ritual both morning and night; especially at night time, you should remove all make-up (and Dubai’s muck with it!) before sleeping.
Why not exfoliate, too?
At least twice weekly, make sure to exfoliate your skin to help avoid skin damage. By exfoliating at night, especially with a salicylic or glycolic exfoliant, you’ll help loosen dead skin cells and encourage cell turnover.
Step 4. Treat your broken capillaries
For some, too much sun exposure can cause damage to your capillaries, breaking them.
Whilst broken capillaries may sound drastic, you’re in luck – despite the name, they’re not really broken. Instead, these superficial blood vessels are permanently widened.
Your best course of action is to guard your skin against their appearance by wearing sunscreen. However if you notice any, there are ways you can treat them… Find products with niacin (or take niacin orally), and continue to wear sunscreen to prevent more from popping up.
Alternatively, you could explore having microneedling done with a professional dermatologist to help skin rejuvenation and protection from broken capillaries.
Step 5. Invest in peels, products and oils
Buying a load of peels to use regularly throughout summer can really help break through tough layers of dead skin on your face.
If you choose a gentle peel – with quinoa for example – you’ll find a good exfoliator, which is gentle on the skin, safe for acne-prone and sensitive skin types. Sephora have a large collection of face masks, with lots to choose from to suit your skin type best.
We mentioned earlier the benefits of antioxidants; by introducing pure vitamin C in serums and moisturisers, you’ll help to rejuvenate your skin, as it has known benefits for boosting collagen and elasticity in your skin.
Essential oils are equally as great – and applying one like primrose oil before bed can help to repair your skin’s barrier while maintaining hydrated skin. Lavender oil can help soothe and calm your face, helping it to look brighter and healthier.
Floral waters, like rose water as we’ve already mentioned, are very helpful.
And lastly, Retinol is one of the richest sources of vitamin A, which helps to combat wrinkles, smooth skin and slow signs of aging overall.
There are groups on Facebook, like The Big Beauty Scoop, that is filled with members based in Dubai that can help you answer any beauty-related questions.