Sure, the official first day of spring may have just happened, but as far as we’re concerned, it’s never too early to start thinking (and dreaming) about summer.
Get your hair healthy.
The healthier your hair is going in to summer, the less sun, chlorine and sea salt damage will affect it. Make a habit of deep conditioning your locks once a week, whether with a handful of coconut oil or a mask.
Start exfoliating now.
Get into the habit early and often. Scrubbing your whole body may seem tedious in the shower, but it genuinely makes a big difference not only in the overall health of your skin, but also in its ability to absorb moisturizing products. And not for nothing, but shaving your legs will be a whole lot more pleasant if you slough off those winter layers of dead skin first.
Clean out your medicine cabinet.
Seriously. Check expiration dates on your green products. Make sure everything smells like it’s supposed to. A winter living in your steamy, artificial-heat riddled bathroom may have compromised your skincare products. And if there’s anything you haven’t used since last summer that you were hoping to save for this summer…be wary.
Re-evaluate your skincare routine.
Summer skin is a different thing than winter skin. If you’ve been using heavy oils and creams all winter to fight dry skin, kudos to you. But you’ll want to consider something lighter come summer, and possibly with an upped SPF in anticipation of more hours spent outside.
Test out lighter makeup.
Summer is hot; you don’t want to walking around with a face full of the same makeup you wear when it’s cold. Not only will it likely run when you sweat, but it can also lead to clogged pores. Let your skin take advantage of the warmth and humidity that comes with summer and get comfortable with different products now so the switch will be seamless when temperatures rise. If you’re used to full-coverage foundation, consider a sheer CC cream. Instead of a dark matte lip, play around with a berry-hued tint.
Stock up on sunscreen.
Like I said earlier, the green products you relied on last summer are likely expired (or will be by the time you need them again this year). Before the rush to buy sunscreen starts, consider buying a new one for your body and another for your face. That way, when the first really nice day rolls around unexpectedly, you’ll be ready to head outside without fear of sunburn or expired SPF.
Switch up your deodorant.
If you’ve been waiting to make the change to all-natural deodorant, do it soon rather than later. Your body will need time to purge itself of any residual chemicals left over by your conventional stick, so your body’s natural odor may change (i.e. get stronger) for that transitional period. Plus, natural deodorants work better with time so if you get started now, your pits will be in great shape for the dog days of summer when the deodorant really gets to work.
Stop ignoring your feet.
When sandal weather finally graces us with its presence, don’t let the feet and toenails you ignored all winter long stop you from sporting an open-toe. Yes, they’ve been bundled in thick socks and snow boots for months now, but be proactive with your foot care. Use a sugar- or coffee-based scrub weekly to soften up those calluses. Slather on a heavy-duty moisturizing salve at night to smooth cracked heels. (Pro tip: Put socks on right after to make sure the moisturizer stays put and really soaks in.) Give your nails and cuticles some love with an oil designed especially for them. And for the love of all that is holy, take off whatever chips of last summer’s nail polish are still lingering—it’s time for something new.
Feeling a little sluggish after months of hibernating? While you wait for the bounty of in-season summer produce that awaits, consider detoxing a bit now with whatever fresh produce you can get your hands on. Whether it’s adding a scoop of greens to your morning smoothie, upping the healthy bacteria in your gut to fight winter bloat or experimenting with some vegan dishes, baby steps now will mean you have the energy to get out and actually be a person when the weather calls for it.