The Cool Factor

Keep your cool and stay fresh faced all summer with this easy to prepare, at-home mask

Woman washing face

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As much as we love the summer, the scorching temps are not exactly the most conducive to keeping your skin clear and healthy. Sure, we all love basking in summer’s glow, but its harsh temperatures can leave your complexion cringing. “Summer heat can take a toll on your skin in a number of ways,” explains Jennifer O’Brien, an esthetician that has beautified complexions at some of Ontario, Canada’s leading luxury spa destinations, and has over 14 years of face time under her belt. “It can cause a flare-up of hives, rashes, acne, rosacea, and even fungal infections.”

Aside from the obvious—keeping your skin clean and protected with a good sunscreen, exfoliating weekly, as well as drinking lots of water—O’Brien says you can help beat the steamy temps and keep your skin looking flawless all summer long using a facial mask a couple of times per week. She recommends a food-based cooling mask made from three simple ingredients you likely already have in your kitchen: cucumber, aloe vera, and yogurt. “This mask will not only provide much-needed relief for the heat, it can also keep your skin hydrated, helping to preserve elasticity and softness.”

Cool with Cucumber

Cucumbers contain vitamin C and caffeic acid, both of which help relieve minor skin irritations and reduce swelling. Aloe vera also soothes and speeds up the healing process in everything from sunburns to acne to minor skin infections. It’s also a powerful moisturizer, hydrating your skin without leaving it greasy. Yogurt is packed with natural bacterial- and fungal-fighting agents that zap zits. It also contains lactic acid, a natural alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) that helps chew up dead skin cells, tighten pores, and keep skin smooth. And its zinc content takes the bite out of those nasty sunburns.

Ingredients:

½ a cucumber

2 tbsp aloe vera juice

1/4 cup organic yogurt

Directions:

1. Peel the cucumber and cut into small chunks. Place cucumber, aloe vera, and yogurt into a blender; blend well.

2. Spread the mixture gently and evenly with fingertips on a clean face, keeping clear of the eye area.

3. Lie down and relax. Leave mask on for 15-20 minutes.

4. Rinse off with cold water; pat skin dry with a clean towel.

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