Any day after the Fourth of July is an excuse to literally do nothing.

Work? That can wait. Relationships? Never knew her! Bills to pay? Isn’t there a season called fall for that?

When it’s hot, humid, harsh, feeling like a um, wet marsh, you can find me sprawled out on the ground melting into the wooden floors. And so it may come as a surprise to you to know that my summer laziness comes with one caveat: I will never, ever go without moisturizing my face.

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Yes, you heard that loud and clear.

Summertime is the one season that’s lazy AF but it’s also one when you’ll finding me even more diligent about moisturizing. Two summers ago, my face literally started developing cysts – like, all over – and it was probably one of the worst skin moments of my entire adult life. (I wrote about it my experience with cysts here). I was living in Fort Greene and New York City’s weather was completely unforgivable with frequent days that felt like I was walking into a hot shower filled with sewage water. It’s then that I made the mistake of ceasing all facial moisturization altogether. I mean, if it was already getting what it needed from the natural humidity, what was the purpose of wasting precious creams when mother nature could do it for you?

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Well, you live and you learn. My face began becoming so unhappy that cysts sprouted over all summer long. Since, I’ve researched that your skin still needs your help. After all, she’s sensitive, needy and completely hopeless, but you still love her, anyway. Because as we know, your skin is the first means of defense when it comes to blocking out anything harmful. This includes but isn’t limited to bacteria, viruses, fungi and other foreign agents. And the purpose of skincare isn’t just about looking or feeling your best – it’s often to strengthen your skin’s protective barrier. For that, you need to not only balance its pH levels, but work at making it well hydrated so that nothing breaks down.

A moisturizer, then, is extremely important in keeping your skin’s barrier intact, happy and healthy. It defends it from the elements. When it’s compromised, it goes out of whack and is when you’ll find problems like blemishes, cysts, rashes or more.

Long story short: When you stop moisturizing, your skin signals to itself to produce even more oil to overcompensate. The excess oil then, does major damage, which is where summer breakouts come out in full force.

So take your light, oil-free moisturizer (use it both day and night) bask in your skimpy clothing, your freedom, your light and yes, have that Hot Girl Summer! You deserve!