For Beautiful Summer Skin, Do This

Dermatologist Lily Talakoub offers a few tips and product picks.


Summer skin care can bedevil even the most diligent SPF-slatherers. We asked Lily Talakoub (aka “Dr. Lily”) of McLean Dermatology and Skincare Center for a primer that can be adapted for all skin types.

Skin care 101:

“Cleanser and mois-turizer at night and sunscreen in the morning are essentials. Use that same moisturizer around the eyes, on the neck and on the lips, too,” she says. Start with an oil- or gel-based cleanser, regardless of how oily or dry your skin is. “Even people who have oily skin, like me, should use an oil-based cleanser. After a while you’ll see that your skin resets. We tend to feel like we have to over-wash our faces, but it dries you out and triggers your skin to produce more oil.” Avoid soaps and abrasive scrubs. They can mess with good bacteria in the skin that prevents premature aging.

Advanced placement:

For a more complex regimen, add a vitamin C-based serum in the morning, underneath your sunscreen, as well as at night before you moisturize, to help combat aging and sun damage. “If you’re really concerned about aging skin, mix a retinol in with your moisturizer, which really helps with fine lines,” she adds. “Not everyone can tolerate retinol. Start out using it once a week and work up to every other day. If you really want to amplify things, use an exfoliant like glycolic acid once a week—but not if you have dry skin.”

The truth about SPF:

“There’s a myth that anything higher than SPF 30 doesn’t make a difference.” That’s not entirely accurate. “According to FDA guidelines, if you’re not using a shot glass-size amount of the product, you’re not getting the full SPF. So if you use half a shot glass of SPF 50, you’re getting the benefits of an SPF 25.” She prefers sunscreens with a physical block, like zinc or titanium dioxide, “and with my kids, no matter what I use on the rest of their bodies, I use a stick for their face.”

Dr. Lily’s favorite products:

Courtesy photos.

All are available at McLean Dermatology ( and via other online retailers, as noted.

1) iS Clinical Pro-Heal Serum Advance+, $148. A vitamin C-packed serum that works for all skin types, including sensitive, acne-prone and aging skin.

2) Avène high-protection tinted sunscreen SPF 50, $36. “It doesn’t run off, and I love that it has a tint, which helps me remember to apply it.”

3) Cane + Austin Retexture Pads, $60. “These glycolic acid-soaked pads are great for targeting clogged pores and blackheads.”

4) Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Cream, $52. “Hyaluronic acid-based moisturizers are very light, not greasy, won’t clog pores and are super hydrating.”

5) Eve Lom Gel Balm Cleanser, $60. “My go-to cleanser for morning and night.”


Categories: Health & Fitness