After months of being bundled up in boots and beanies, it’s time for a spring-centric shift in your skincare regimen. Priorities: exfoliation, UV protection, lightweight hydration, and damage repair. And as chilly weather gives way to warmer, more humid days, you need to tweak your products to more season-appropriate selections. Here’s how to shake up your skincare routine, with clean, chemical-free products to restore your glow (bonus: they’re all from companies founded or operated by women, made for all skin types and colors).
- Clean, but deeper. Spring’s heat and humidity—plus stepped-up exercise that leaves you sweaty—can mean clogged pores, blemishes, and breakouts. Deep-clean pores and zap zits before they start with a soap-free cleanser that removes excess oil, toxins and sweat. Swap winter’s creamy cleansers for lighter foams or gels with ingredients that hydrate and heal. Wash for at least 60 seconds to allow cleanser to break down dirt and oils, then rinse with tepid (not hot) water. We love: Eve Milan New York Gentle Face Cleansing Gel; Andalou Naturals 1000 Roses Cleansing Foam.
- Freshen up, fast. Warm, humid, more-active days mean extra sweating and more opportunities for clogged pores and breakouts. Sweep away dirt, sweat, and excess oil, and freshen up fast, with an alcohol-free toner. Use after cleansing to remove residue and tone and tighten skin. During the day, spritz on a face mist infused with botanicals to cool and refresh. Or tuck a packet of face wipes into your purse or backpack to keep skin clean and dewy all day long. We love: Magically Indeed Calming Face Mist; Bea’s Bayou RePHresh Toner.
- Step up scrubs. Too much exfoliating in winter can strip moisture and leave skin dry and irritated. Now’s the season to step up exfoliating to sweep away dead skin cells, polish your complexion, and restore your glow. Start with a gentle scrub to remove dull, flaky surface layers, and exfoliate twice a week. Use a fruit enzyme peel for more sensitive skin. Follow with a deeply hydrating mask to repair winter’s damage and promote a smooth, dewy glow. For everyday exfoliating, use a natural sponge made from konjac—a porous root vegetable that gently scrubs and deeply cleans. We love: MyChelle Fruit Enzyme Scrub; Eve Milan Konjac Fiber Sponge.
- Rethink your moisturizer. Heavy creams are perfect for harsh, cold winter winds and drying indoor heat, but spring’s humidity and warmer weather call for weightless hydration. For daytime, choose a lightweight moisturizer to soften and protect without leaving a heavy layer. Look for one with an SPF of 30 to add an extra layer of protection against the sun’s damaging rays. Or use a facial fluid or serum designed to balance the skin’s microbiome, fight bacteria, and plump skin without heavy oils. At night, a richer, more emollient oil helps calm, repair, and soothe dry, irritated, and winter-weary skin. We love: Merv Moonlight Renewal Face Oil; Bea’s Bayou Good Biome Face Solution Serum; Love, Indus Luminosity Dewdrops.
- Focus on eyes. As the sun’s rays intensify, so does squinting. And the thin, delicate skin around the eyes is so very vulnerable to the collagen-damaging effects of UV rays. Plus, seasonal allergies can lead to dark circles and bags, and if you’re rubbing itchy eyes, all that tugging and pulling can damage delicate skin. Use an eye cream designed to hydrate, protect, and repair with hyaluronic acid and peptides to plump up fine lines and wrinkles. Products infused with caffeine help minimize puffiness and dark circles. We love: One Love Organics Botanical E Eye Balm.
- Indulge in a facial. As the seasons shift, a facial is more than an indulgence. It’s a necessity to exfoliate winter’s dead, dry skin and intensely hydrate and repair. Full-on spa facials are luxurious, relaxing—and super-pricey. For a more budget-friendly option, try a DIY facial. Start by cleansing and steaming your face, use a deep exfoliating mask or scrub, and follow with toner, serum, and moisturizer. An at-home facial kit that includes everything you need—exfoliating cleanser, toner, mask, and more—makes it even easier (and really fun). We love: Beauty Cloud Beauty in Bloom Facial Kit.
- Switch to sheer. Heavy foundations and concealers can clog pores and weigh you down in spring’s humidity and rising temperatures. Switch to light, sheer options that even out skin tone, soften, and protect. A BB (beauty balm) cream with healing ingredients hydrates and nourishes with natural, dewy color. Or use a tinted moisturizer with SPF for sheer coverage plus sun protection. Look for mineral-based formulas free from parabens, petrochemicals, and synthetic dyes. We love: Eleve Bombshell Beauty Balm; UnSun Mineral Tinted Face Cream.
- Step up SPFs. We know you’ve been using sunscreen religiously all winter long (right?), but as the sun’s rays intensify, it’s time to take SPFs more seriously. Use a mineral-based sunscreen with an SPF 30 under makeup or moisturizer, even on cloudy days. Or look for double-duty moisturizers, serums, and lightweight foundations infused with SPF for a faster, easier skin care regimen (and no excuses to skip sun protection). And instead of tanning, try a safe, natural self-tanner for an instant bronze glow. We love: UnSun Everyday Body Lotion and Sunscreen; Beauty by Earth Self-Tanner.
- Think below the neck. Skincare doesn’t end at the neck. As you shed layers of clothing and expose more skin, strip off dead, dry cells with a body scrub that removes dull surface layers and unveils soft, dewy skin. Exfoliating below the neck helps skin absorb moisturizers more effectively, without leaving an oily residue. Add an ultra-hydrating moisturizer to soften, smooth, and protect. And don’t forget deodorant to keep you fresh and dry all day long. Choose a natural version that’s free from aluminum, parabens, and toxic chemicals. We love: Caribbrew Haitian Coffee Scrub; Vedic Botanicals Kirei Face and Body Cream; Brandless Lavandin Deodorant.