Smooth skin with a natural, healthy glow is the summer goal…but often the reality is that skin is either sunburned, dry and ashy, oily and breaking out, or marred by bug bites and itchy rashes. Fortunately, nature’s gems can help ease itches and irritation while getting skin looking and feeling healthier.

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV): ACV has antibacterial properties and can be used topically to help with acne. In the article 8 Real Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar, Amy Myers, M.D., explains ACV’s acetic, citric, lactic, and succinic acid content works to kill off a bacteria that contributes to blemishes. Dr. Myers adds that, though no studies have been completed, ACV is thought to dry up urushiol, the oil that poison ivy secretes. Another perk: Wellness Mama Katie Wells suggests taking vinegar baths for a variety of benefits, including reducing body odor. In the article Benefits of Vinegar Baths she notes, “Body odor occurs when bacteria mixes with sweat or moisture from the body and thrives in the warm moist environment, especially in places like the underarms. Vinegar can help kill this bacteria, reducing odor. It also creates an environment where odor is less likely to thrive."

Shea butter: “If you aren’t currently using products that contain shea butter, you are doing your skin a disservice,” says David Colbert, M.D., in What Skincare Benefits Does Shea Butter Offer? “This creamy, buttery substance is ideal for improving the skin’s appearance in a variety of ways.” He says its combination of vitamins and high concentration of fatty acids “helps protect the skin’s naturally occurring oils and deeply moisturizes even the driest skin.” Add in its variety of acids, which Dr. Colbert says help prevent skin from drying out and help clear scaly patches, plus its anti-inflammatory properties to help with inflamed skin and breakouts, and it’s easy to see why shea butter is such a standout summer helper.

Argan oil: In Top 12 Argan Oil Benefits for Skin and Hair, Christine Ruggeri, CHHC, shares many uses for the oil, including as a skin toner, moisturizer, lip conditioner, and foot treatment. And great for summer: “Razor bumps and razor burn are uncomfortable and unsightly,” Ruggeri says. “Argan oil is an effective treatment to soothe the skin after shaving, both for men after shaving their beards and for women after shaving their legs."

Rosewater: This spa-pampering beautifier helps fight bacterial infections and soothe inflammation, which may be beneficial for acne, dermatitis or rosacea. In the article 5+ Rose Water Benefits and Uses (Plus, How to Make It), Jillian Levy, CHHC, says rosewater can “refresh, soften, brighten and tone skin that has suffered in the past, possibly helping to reduce the appearance of dark spots and scars.” Levy also notes that it may help soothe dryness, red skin, razor burns, and ingrown hairs. And for people feeling the effects of too much sun over time, or just general signs of aging, Levy says, “Research shows that roses contain antioxidants that fight off free radicals which encourage skin damage and signs of skin aging, such as wrinkles, dark spots, dryness, etc. By combatting effects of free radicals, rose water may help skin to retain its moisture, even texture and tone.”

Colloidal silver: Dr. Josh Axe, DC, DNM, CN, shares his thoughts on this natural option in Proven Colloidal Silver Benefits Or An Unsafe Hoax? He shares some of the history, types of silver, and cautions to consider. He then goes on to list the benefits, which include antibacterial, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and antiviral properties. For skin health, Dr. Axe says, “Colloidal silver benefits many skin conditions as well, including psoriasis and eczema. It’s soothing to scrapes and even repairs tissue damage from burns.” He also stresses: “Colloidal silver needs to be applied differently for each condition. Be sure to purchase a high-quality, true colloidal silver product, which you’ll find in many health food stores.”

More Natural Multitaskers to Showcase This Summer!

In April 2020, WholeFoods Magazine reported on more stand-out ingredients in the article 5 Multi-Tasking Ingredients to Simplify Summer. Check it out for the scoop on:
  • Aloe Vera
  • Calendula
  • Tea Tree Oil
  • Coconut Oil
  • Witch Hazel
…plus topical perks of phytocannabinoids (also handy for summertime weekend warriors!)