Whether you've jetted off on holiday somewhere hot and sunny, lounged on the beach in the UK or simply sat outside and caught some rays when you could, changes are that your skin may be feeling the damage of the summer sun. You may have enjoyed achieving a golden glow, and topping up your tan while the warm weather is still here, but sun exposure causes a multitude of skin problems. Prolonged exposure to UVA and UVB light is responsible for 80-90% of premature skin ageing, meanign wrinkles, fine lines and sagging skin all appear sooner. It also lowers your immunity protection against infections and increases your chance of developing of skin cancer. While it seems we might have another week or so of warm, weather in the UK now that summer is starting to wind down it's time to take stock of the damage you've caused to your skin and start working to recover it. 

1. Moisture
Sun damage is one of the main causes of dry skin, this is because it depletes moisture levels in the skin and dries up skin-lubricatinbg oils. Not only can skin feel dry, flaky or scaly but it can also make wrinkles more pronounced. Sun exposure also speeds up the natural ageing process, so sun worshippers may notice fine lines and wrinkles starting to appear sooner than the thought. The contrast between the hot outdoor weather and icy air conditioning inside can also cause the skin to become dry, as can dips in the sea and the swimming pool. If your skin is looking dry post-summer then you should look for an intensely nourishing moisturiser to increase hydration levels in the skin. Our Space Anti-Age Day Cream is infused with hyaluronic acid, the most-powerful water-soluble compound which is found naturally in the body, it draws moisture into the skin and retains in deep in the dermis. This intensely moisturising day cream also contains vitamins and antioxidants to strengthen, repair and renew your skin.

2. Exfoliate
Because sun exposure can lead to dry skin, you may notice a build up of dead skin cells on your face which makes your complexion look dull. The most effective way to rid yourself of this is regular exfoliation. However large grains can damage the skin and even cause micro-wounds, so instead try our Lift Off Exfoliating Cleanser which uses lactic acid, tartaric acid and papaya enzyme to gently dissolve dead skin cells and increase cell turnover. But if you're suffering with sunburn or your skin is peeling then you should avoid this step until your skin begins to heal. Your skin will be too sensitive during this time to cope with any exfoliation, instead continue to moisturise and let your skin peel naturally. It doesn't look very nice in the beginning but it will help to exfoliate the skin naturally and evenly.

3. Up Your Levels Of Antioxidants
UV light increases the production of free radicals, highly unstable molecules which attack DNA and encourage the breakdown of collagen and elastin, proteins in the skin which are responsible for keeping it looking firm, smooth and plump. This speeds up the ageing process and makes the signs of ageing more apparent. One of the best ways to fight the damage caused by free radicals is with antioxidants, but UV light also depletes our natural reserves of those. Luckily you can top your antioxidants by eating a healthy diet; kiwis, blueberries, kale, spinach and chard are all rich in vitamins C and E, two antioxidants which work in harmony together to repair and replenish the skin. You can also boost the benefits of a healthy diet with a good skincare routine, the entire 111SKIN range is infused with antioxidants to protect and renew the skin. 

4. Banish Those Pimples
It is a common myth that sun exposure helps with acne, but this is not true. Many acne sufferers may notice an improvement in their skin in the beginning as the sun dries up skin-lubricating oils so they may not find their complexion as greasy. As the skin becomes more tan and red then spots may become less noticeable, but it doesn't mean they are completely gone. In the long term continual sunbathers will find that this leads to dry skin and an overproduction of sebum, which can make acne worse. Long term sun exposure will also lead to a build up a dry skin cells, which clog pores and attract acne-causing bacteria. If you've noticed your spots coming back now summer is over then it is time to implement a proper skincare routine targeted at blemishes. Try our Ground Control Anti-Blemish Tonic which contains Benzyl Alcohol, a powerful antibacterial which reduces inflammation and stimulates skin renewal. You may want to combine this with a target spot treatment, which can be applied directly to stubborn pimples.