Monday, 20 April 2015

Why This Heat is Causing Us Skin Problems


Have you ever travelled to another (cooler) country and realized your skin becomes so much better? Then when you're back in Singapore, your skin flares up all over again?

Somehow, my skin becomes clearer and softer when I travel to cooler countries like the U.S., and even in Korea and Hong Kong (in 18°C - 26°C weather). Unfortunately, home is in Singapore, where the weather is among my skin's worst enemies.

Furthermore, given how the past few days have climbed to temperatures of 
33°C - 35°C, Singapore's heat is becoming increasingly unbearable. I love Singapore, but if I were to ever move to another country, the main reason would be for the weather - Singapore is far too hot!

Considering how important our complexion is to most of us, this weather is doing absolutely no favours to our skin. In fact, I did extensive research and realized this is exactly why our skin sucks in this heat:

1. Shiny, oily faces
Angelina Jolie's oily face - this would be a permanent occurrence if she lived in Singapore
As Singapore gets hotter, the air also becomes more humid, which intensifies your skin's oil production. Furthermore, whatever oil produced by your skin tends to sit on the surface longer. When you perspire, the oil mixed with sweat and gives you an even greasier, more shiny look. 


2. Makeup does not stay all day


A lot of makeup today are heavy and oil-based, which look awesome on people in the U.S. but do not wear well in Singapore's hot weather. 

Our initially-dewy foundations melt, eyeliners and mascara smudges, cheeks look too red even though we only applied till a little rosy...it's so hard to keep makeup looking good in this kind of weather! I've stopped applying mascara a few years ago as it kept smudging in the humidity. While I can't live without my eyeliner, I find myself having to reapply it twice or even three times in a single day.


3. More pimples / breakouts / acne
Even Hollywood celebrities like Cameron Diaz and Britney Spears struggle with acne.
Many acne-sufferers find that their complexion becomes worse as the weather gets hotter, whereas those with otherwise-clear skin find themselves breaking out more often than usual. Why is this happening?

Acne essentially is caused by the bacterium proprionibacterium acnes, one of skin's natural protective microflora. But when there is excess of dirt and oil, the bacterium feeds on this and get out of control, leading to inflammation and breakouts.


4. Larger, more visible pores
Strip away the makeup, and this is pretty much how our pores look.

You're not imagining things either. Pores do get bigger in hot weather, as the heat increases perspiration and causes our skin to produce more oil, all of which comes out from our pores. Depending on how much stuff is coming out of our pores, they can change size by up to 20 percent.


5. More clogged pores and blackheads

Many of us also find little bumps appearing more often in the heat, especially on areas like our forehead, cheeks and chin. These are clogged pores, which result when there's build-up in our pores, typically from dirt, oil, bacteria, or dead skin cells. When the weather becomes hotter and causes our skin to sweat more and become oilier, the frequency of clogged pores increase.


6. Worsened eczema and rashes 

Eczema usually gets worse in hot weather as the heat and humidity causes us to sweat excessively, which in turn makes our skin itchy and more flaky. 

7. Redder skin

The heat and harsh sun also causes our skin to become redder and more flushed. Sometimes it looks like I overdosed on the blusher when I didn't even apply any!

Unfortunately, it looks like Singapore's weather is on an upward climb, so we just have to learn how to deal with it and take care of our skin in this heat. I'll share more on my next post some cheap and easy solutions I use to still look my best even in this weather.



Note: Photos and chart are rightfully credited to their original owners, including NEA and The Strait Times. I do not own any of the images posted here.

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