Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Summer must have products

It really doesn't feel like we're only three weeks away from summer here in southwestern B.C. - we're getting rained on constantly, the temperature is in the mid-teens ˚C, and we're still waiting for strawberry season - but I can still prepare for the horrible heat...I mean, loveliness...of summer. So I thought I'd put together a few ideas for summer must-have products you'll need before camping, tanning, swimming, and generally being too warm season is upon us!

If you're travelling, you'll want to make a few bars for easier packing! I never leave the house without a shampoo, conditioner, body scrub, or foot scrub bar. I don't have to shave my legs (I know, envy me) but I like to bring along a shaving bar if I'm doing a lot of swimming! (If the idea of a shaving bar is weird to you, then try a shaving lotion!)

There are many ways you can adapt your products for summer fun. You can add more aloe for apres sun soothing, you can increase the humectants to draw more moisture to your skin, and you can change your oils to increase the linoleic acid oils to help with any barrier damage you might incur! I know I always need products for my feet - a foot lotion, a more intense foot cream, and modified body butter that becomes a foot cream - thanks to my habit of never wearing socks in the summer! And I know I need some serious exfoliation this time of year, and nothing works better for me than an emulsified sugar scrub in a zingy summer scent (Jewelled Citrus and Hello Sweet Thang are always favourites, although I'm really enjoying Melissa's Froot Loops blend - 1 part lemon curd, 1 part cream cheese frosting!)

I love my summer lotions to be light, although sometimes I need something a little more intense, like a body butter, for after swimming and camping fun!
I need my summer time fun aloe cooling spray to keep me cool, and I need an apres sun exposure aloe spray for my friends who don't seem to realize sunscreen is essential (or you can turn this into a gel)! (The summer time fun aloe cooling spray also works to take smells out of shoes - or at least make them smell minty - and it's great for spraying on really warm feet!)

If you're a sewer, make yourself a few things to make summer fun that much more enjoyable! Don't forget to make a few cool ties to take along with you - everyone says they love the heat, but it's nice to have a portable cooling down system in your day bag! (I've made a silky pillow with these crystals for really hot days!) And a sunglass case - or better yet, a dual layer sunglass case - is essential for keeping your shades scratch-free! Finally, don't forget to make yourself a ton of funky and adorable headbands to keep your hair out of your face!

And if you like food and eating it outside with friends, try making a shrimp boil! These are a summer staple around our house once corn season starts!

If you're planning to be in the sun, get a good sunscreen. No, you can't make these yourself as it is really complicated chemistry and you won't have a clue if it's working or not until you burn. (As someone with a husband who has vitiligo, I'm very aware of the dangers of burning!)


Brian said...

I just love your site! I'm formulating a lotion for my daughter who loves it but wants it more "pillowy" whatever that means! My formulation has macademia nut oil, hazel nut oil, IPM, mango butter, coconut butter, a little shea butter, aloe, glycerine, e wax and cetyl alcohol with white tea. Great formulation thanks to your guidance. But pillowy??? I think it means softer and more luxious???

Can you help?


Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Brian. You have a ton of astringent oils and butters in there - mango, macadamia nut, hazelnut, and IPM are all very dry feeling oils, so perhaps she wants something a little greasier? You could substitute some of the oils for similar weight but oilier oils - here's my page of downloads and posts on the oils for your reference. Personally, I love rice bran oil in a lotion - it's glidy, but not too greasy.

I know my mom loves lotions with silicones - if it has cyclomethicone and dimethicone, I know she'll like it. If your daughter is accustomed to using store brands, maybe that's it?

Let me know if I can help further!

lissa said...

Thanks for the summer primer. Love the camping B&B ideas. Never thought about taking a solid conditioner - new idea. May I add another sewing idea? I make a soap pouch to carry 'my' soap. I use a cotton waffle weave fabric on the outside and a plastic liner inside with a string tie to close.
Happy camping

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Lissa! Love this idea - it would be good for my shampoo, conditioner, and scrub bars as well!