Summer Skin Survival

Health, Home & Family, Outdoors
on July 22, 2014
Summer Skin Survival Tips

If you have to embark on an 11- mile jungle trek in the dead of summer, it’s handy to have a nurse along. That’s what Margaret Bobonich’s teammates discovered during 2005’s Survivor: Guatemala season, which found the dermatology nurse practitioner tending to dehydration, torn muscles and a poisonous barbed plant injury after her team won the grueling first challenge.

Ousted halfway through her season, Bobonich returns to Guatemala annually with nonprofit Refuge International and practices full-time at Cleveland’s University Hospital, Case Medical Center.

You may not (hopefully) be lost in the wild this summer, but you should still protect your skin with Bobonich’s tips.

Do wear a hat and SPF 30 outdoors, and reapply every two hours.

Don’t spend more than four hours in direct sun, even if you’re protected. Break it up with some shade time. “The sun plays a big part in breaking down skin so that you get more wrinkles and dark spots,” Bobonich says.

Do wash up immediately after you’re exposed to poison ivy. “The oil stays on our skin and causes irritation as long as it’s there,” Bobonich says.

Don’t use soap—especially the antibacterial kind—on your face and body. Opt for a gentle cleanser.

Do take cooler, shorter showers to help keep skin hydrated.

Do use petroleum jelly for wound and burn care. “Hydrated wounds heal faster and better, and the jelly also prevents scarring,” she says. It’s also a great, non-allergenic moisturizer.