8 Easy Skincare Swaps to Make For Spring

The experts have spoken.

Skincare Swaps to Make for Spring
Photo: Getty Images

When it comes to getting dressed in the spring, light layers are key. You want to be able to easily take off your denim jacket once it gets warm in the afternoon rather than be stuck sweating in a wool sweater.

The same goes for your skincare routine. As the weather gets warmer, skin tends to be less dry so lightweight formulas will typically keep skin hydrated and balanced. However, depending on your current climate, dryness from winter can linger, so you should still prioritize moisturizing.

"In the spring, your skin is starting to adjust to the change in humidity and dryness of the environment. Depending on where you live, the spring can be filled with rain and very humid, or the UV rays can start to come out and dryness from the winter can continue," says Dr. Kavita Mariwalla, a board-certified dermatologist in West Islip, New York.

The only predictable weather forecast for spring is that temperatures throughout the day will be unpredictable, and thus, can impact the state of your skin. Along with Dr. Mariwalla, we tapped Dr. Sheila Farhang, board-certified dermatologist and founder of Avant Dermatology in Tucson, Arizona, to share their expert tips on how to transition your skincare routine from winter to spring.

1. Sunscreen, Sunscreen, Sunscreen

While wearing sunscreen is important all year round, it's especially important to protect yourself during the spring as you'll inevitably be spending more time outdoors. Dr. Farhang says to use SPF 30 or higher, and calls out EltaMD's UV Sheer Broad-Spectrum SPF 50+ as a favorite. This formula is a lightweight mineral sunscreen that's also sweat- and waterproof.

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EltaMD UV Sheer Broad-Spectrum SPF 50

EltaMD Fluid Sheer Broad-Spectrum SPF 50+

Reapplying sunscreen throughout the day is also key. A powder SPF, like the one below from ISDIN, is great for touch-ups on the go and can be applied over makeup. Dr. Farhang also notes that UPF hats and clothing can offer another layer of protection.

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ISDIN Mineral Brush

ISDIN Mineral Brush Facial Powder

2. Switch Up You Anti-Aging Routine

"I love winter as a time to manage damage, and one of my favorite ingredients for this is retinol," Dr. Mariwalla says. "During warmer months, I'm a fan of switching that out for a glycolic acid coupled with an anti-glycation serum." Glycation is the excess of sugar molecules in the skin fibers, which can negatively impact the firmness of skin.

Glycolic acid is an exfoliating AHA acid that helps minimize dullness and uneven skin texture. Dr. Mariwalla recommends SkinCeuticals Glycolic 10 Renew Overnight, as the formula promotes cell turnover while simultaneously supporting the skin barrier.

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SkinCeuticals Glycolic 10 Renew Overnight

Glycolic 10 Renew Overnight

3. Hit Pause On Slugging

If you've been slugging all winter but find that Vaseline or Aquaphor now feel too heavy on your skin and clog your pores, Dr. Farhang suggests hitting pause on the moisturizing technique until next winter.

A lightweight lotion with ceramides, glycerin, and niacinamide, such as La-Roche Posay's Double Repair Moisturizer UV, will provide adequate moisture. Even better, it also offers SPF 30 protection.

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La Roche-Posay Toleriane Double Repair UV

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Double Repair Face Moisturizer UV

4. Don't Neglect The Skin Below Your Neck

"Your body needs a little attention after a cold winter. Consider a lotion with urea and natural moisturizing factors to get rid of dry scales and lackluster appearance," suggests Dr. Mariwalla. "My go-to is AmLactin. Available over-the-counter and at a good price point, regular use of this cream will make those elbows and legs ready for a summer reveal."

Dr. Farhang seconds that and says that if you used a heavy body cream during the winter, you may opt to switch to a lotion, as you would your facial moisturizer.

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AmLactin Daily Moisturizing Body Lotion

AmLactin Daily 12% Lactic Acid Moisturizing Lotion

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5. Be Gentle With Your Eye Cream

Spring is prime time for seasonal allergies. If you're someone who experiences irritation and discomfort from pollen during this transitional season, Dr. Farhang recommends using gentle products around the eye area.

"Don't use aggressive eye cream," she says. "Instead, Vaseline or Aquaphor work well in this case to improve the skin barrier." Cooling eye masks can also help decrease inflammation and products with green tea, like Revision Skincare's D.E.J Eye Cream which minimizes puffiness.

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Aquaphor Healing Ointment

Aquaphor Healing Ointment
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Revision Skincare D.E.J Eye Cream

Revision Skincare D.E.J Eye Cream

6. Opt For Sunless Tanner

For a sun-kissed glow minus the UV damage, opt for a sunless tanning product. Dr. Farhang is a fan of COOLA's Sunless Tan Anti-Aging Serum, which in addition to adding a natural tan that lasts for up to three days, it also improves the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

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Coola's Sunless Tan Anti-Aging Serum

Coola Sunless Tan Anti-Aging Face Serum

7. Don't Forget Your Hair

Dr. Mariwalla points out that people tend to forget how seasonal shifts affect their hair. "I think it's important to switch out for a lighter weight conditioner," she says. "The hair doesn't get as dry, but if you're going to be doing more outdoor activities, consider that you may be washing your hair more and the regular use of a lightweight conditioner is a good idea." She's also a fan of using a lightweight hair oil as needed for extra hydration and touch-ups in-between washes, specifically Augustinus Bader's formula.

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Augustinus Bader The Hair Oil

Augustinus Bader The Hair Oil

8. Spring Clean Your Medicine Cabinet

While you might be taking inventory of your closet while swapping out your winter and summer wardrobes, take stock of your medicine cabinet, too.

"Make sure your products aren't expired or open too long — there's usually an expiration on the bottle," Dr. Farhang says. "Use this time to clear out your products and wash your makeup brushes and sponges."

Now, that's some sound advice.

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