In part two of our Summer Beauty Series with Los Angeles based skin care expert Kate Somerville, we talk to the ‘Guru of Glow’ about how to get our skin looking it’s very best starting from the inside, out.  Whether it’s travel, the sun, or a bit of party prep you need help with, her top tips here take in everything avocados to aloe, good hydration to green tea to help you handle your skin during the summer months.

What are the best foods we can eat to help nourish the skin?

Your skin really reflects what you put into your body.  The key is to eat high-quality, nutrient-dense foods on a daily basis – lean protein, plenty of low-glycemic-load carbohydrates (non-starchy vegetables and fruits) and moderate amounts of beneficial fats. Some of my top favorite skin-boosting foods are avocado, flaxseed, blueberries, green tea, olive oil, wild salmon, spinach and yams. Avoid refined sugar, salt, flour and grain products, trans and saturated fats and limit your intake of dairy, caffeine and alcohol.

Skin that feels dry and tight from the sun is dehydrated, so it’s all about putting moisture back into the skin. Drink plenty of water and eat water rich fruits and vegetables. I love starting my day with a green juice or smoothie. Incorporate ingredients like aloe juice, celery, spinach and cucumber.

What’s the most important thing we can do to take care of our skin over the summer?

SPF protection is the most important element for healthy skin year round, but it’s particularly important during the summer months.  I recommend looking for sunscreens with ingredients that contain either physical or chemical blocks and always look for broad spectrum protection – which means protection from all UV rays. Try Kate Somerville Daily Deflector SPF 50.

How important are other lifestyle factors such as stress, sleep etc. when it comes to good skin?

Your entire state of mind can affect your skin. None of us lives a completely stress free existence, so knowing how to manage your stress is important. I recommend meditation, yoga, exercise or a massage to reduce stress.

What are the worst mistakes people make when it comes to choosing skincare products?

Not knowing their skin!  Are you oily, combination, dry? Take the time to assess your skin and your concerns. Think of your skin as having different eco systems – not every area has the same characteristics and concerns. Are you dry around the eyes, but experience hormonal breakouts on your chin? Taking the time to get to know your skin will really help you make more of an educated decision and help navigate through products in-store. It really comes down to this: don’t use the same product all over your face. No matter what your skin is like, however, hydration is key! If you are really oily, look for an oil free product with Hyaluronic Acid.

How can we help mitigate the effects of air travel and jet lag on our skin?

Hydration is so important while traveling because typically you’re not drinking as much water as you should, and the air on planes is dry.   I can’t leave home without DermalQuench Liquid Lift Advanced Wrinkle Treatment – it gives my skin an instant boost of hydration (ideal during long flights) and plumps fine lines and wrinkles to give my skin a smooth, refreshed look.

For jet lag, my secret to treating dark circles is the following: I steep green tea bags, and put two metal spoons on ice. Then I apply the tea bags over my eye area for ten minutes. After I remove the tea bags, I apply my Line Release Eye Cream, then massage around my eye area with the cold spoons. This trick instantly reduces puffiness!

Top tips for getting skin looking great for an event?

For at-home prep, I always tell my clients to follow these 3 simple steps to achieve healthy, glowing skin: exfoliate, hydrate and moisturize. Exfoliation helps remove the dry, dull layer of skin and reveals a fresh, glowing complexion.  Hydration is so important, and many of my clients confuse hydration with moisturization. Look for products with Hyaluronic Acid to draw moisture into cells and keep skin plump and youthful looking. Moisturization then seals in hydration and keeps skin’s moisture levels balanced. Look for a moisturizer with Peptides. My favorite is Age Arrest Anti-Wrinkle Cream which contains Telo-5™ Technology, based on the Nobel Prize winning medical research on telomeres, it is designed to combat the comprehensive signs of aging.

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Photo Courtesy of Kate Somerville and Google