Heat, humidity and sweating can lead to an onslaught of skin annoyances such as breakouts, rashes and spotting. The best way to prevent these summertime afflictions is to understand why they occur in the first place, so we asked Dr. Lotika Singh of Schweiger Dermatology Group to break down their origins and find out what we can do to treat them. Turns out yeast is even worse than we thought…
Why you have it: Summer is the perfect storm for dandruff, which is caused by a combination of yeast, oil and grease.
How to get rid of it: Use anti-dandruff shampoo. Leave it on for five minutes and use it three times a week. Once the dandruff is under control, you can use the shampoo once a week as maintenance.
Scaling in the Corners of Your Nose and Eyebrows
Why you have it: Yeast mixes with sweat on your face and can cause dry scales.
How to get rid of it: Use an anti-dandruff shampoo to cleanse your face a few times a week, being careful to avoid getting it in the eyes. If it gets really bad, see your dermatologist for a prescription antifungal cream.
Rashes Underneath Your Breasts
Why you have it: There’s a humid environment under the breasts. Sweating or yeast trapped under the breasts can lead to rashes.
How to get rid of it: Sprinkle baby powder underneath your breasts in the morning to help absorb the sweat throughout the day.
Splotches of White on Your Body
Why you have it: The clinical term for this condition is tinea versicolor. The real culprit is the same yeast that causes dandruff. Tinea versicolor is more noticeable in the summer because the yeast produces a chemical that prevents tanning, so while the surrounding skin tans normally, the affected area stands out more.
How to get rid of it: Use a dandruff shampoo on the body, such as Selsun Blue.
Why you have it: Back acne (or bacne) is a summertime nemesis caused by sweating and pore-clogging sunscreen.
How to get rid of it: Shower right after exercising and carry wipes or pads containing salicylic acid to use on your back during the day.
Crater-Like Pits on the Soles of Your Feet
Why you have it: This is called pitted keratolysis. It is caused by a bacteria called Kytococcus sedentarius. This tends to occur in patients with sweaty feet in a humid environment.
How to get rid of it: Treatment is to target the bacteria with a prescription-strength topical antibiotic or an antiperspirant to control the sweating.
Why you have it: It is caused by a fungus, which tends to proliferate in humid environments.
How to get rid of it: Treatment is with an antifungal cream, but keeping the feet dry will help prevent the infection. Powders, such as Zeasorb and Tinactin can help absorb excess sweat and treat the fungus.