Keep It Simple This Monsoon with Dr. Batul

The most divisive season is here. With the onset of the monsoons, you’re probably done with the sweltering heat from the past summer months, or you’re already done with the rains and want to fast-forward to winter. Either way, heavy rains, soaring temperatures and increasing humidity can wreak havoc on your skin. Of course, as the rains set in we’re all switching to lighter products and staying hydrated but to get some expert opinion we caught up with Dr. Batul Patel, Leading Celebrity Dermatologist and Founder & Medical Director of The Bombay Skin Clinic (@thebombayskinclinic) on how we can care for our skin this monsoon.

Monsoon skincare with Dr. Batul

With the onset of monsoons, do we need to switch up our skincare routine?

Yes, it's often a good idea to adjust your skincare routine with changes in the weather. Monsoon weather is typically humid, which can cause your skin to become oilier. This increases the chance of acne, breakouts and infection. To avoid this, I would suggest making the switch to oil-free products this season, especially if you have oily skin. For dryer skin, the humidity in the atmosphere thankfully helps your skin feel better. But if you have more dehydrated skin than usual, sticking to your cream-based products would be best.

How should we go about tackling the effects of high humidity this weather brings on oily skin?

This Monsoon with Dr. Batul

Oily skin can be quite unpredictable this season, and it can be quite a task to keep the oiliness and greasiness away which in turn reduces the chance of acne and breakouts.

If your skin feels very oily, avoid the use of a moisturiser totally. Instead, I would suggest you use serum-based or fluid-based Vitamin C. You can also use an exfoliating polish twice a week containing any active ingredient like glycolic acid, mandelic acid, lactic acid or cane sugar which can help exfoliate your skin without drying it completely. Your nighttime routine can include Azelaic acid which acts as a great anti-inflammatory and helps to reduce oiliness without overdrying your skin. It works on active acne, acne marks and brightening your skin tone.

Dry skin behaves a lot differently in a humid environment. What would you say is the one go-to for such skin?

While you should avoid using thick a cream-based moisturiser to avoid sudden over-activation of oil glands, monsoons are a great time for dry skin to start using Retinol which is the only molecule that can regenerate your skin cells and improve cell turn over, which in turn, maintains the skin barrier and helps to reduce skin dryness.

Would you suggest any at home face masks this season?

This Monsoon with Dr. Batul

Natural ingredients that you find in your pantry have more power than you realise. According to your skin type I have 2 masks you could make yourself and use.

For Oily Skin:

To combat humidity, a homemade mask with 1 tablespoon of French green clay, ½ teaspoon green tea (matcha powder), 1 tablespoon of fresh aloe vera gel, and 2 teaspoons of witch hazel extract mixed with 5 drops of rosewood essential oil and 2 tablespoons of rose water would work well. This mask is a super potent skin cleansing formula. It helps clean the pores, purify & tighten the skin, leaving it healthy and radiant. Apply the mixture cold on the face and leave for 15 to 20 minutes.

For Dry Skin:

Mash half an avocado and mix with a tablespoon of honey. Avocado is rich in healthy fats, vitamins, and antioxidants that can brighten your skin, while honey is a natural humectant that hydrates the skin. Leave it on for 15-20 minutes and wash off with warm water for a natural glow.

We've heard less is more during this season, what would you suggest we continue using this season?

That’s right, the lesser the products you use on your skin the less intimidated your skin will be. But these 2 essentials must be part of your routine no matter what.  

  • Sunscreen- your skincare routine must include sunscreens because even on cloudy days, the sun's UV rays can impact your skin.
  • Exfoliator- use a gentle scrub that suits your skin type to exfoliate your skin during monsoon.

The one thing we all need to follow regardless of skin type?

This Monsoon with Dr. Batul

I cannot tire of saying this enough, but sunscreen is of utmost importance regardless of the season. I would also suggest switching to lighter makeup products that are easier to remove and don’t clog your pores. And finally, stay hydrated and keep your skin hydrated too. The simpler you keep your skincare routine; your skin will only thank you.