Surf Skincare 101: Moisturizers


Moisture is the essence of wetness, and wetness is the essence of beauty. - Derek Zoolander

Let’s talk moisturizer baby!

Creams vs Lotions - what’s the difference? 

The simplicity of the Zoolander quote is definitely funny, but wetness - or water - actually is the key to understanding the differences in moisturizers. I’m sure Blue Steel wouldn’t be nearly as effective without proper hydration. Every body is looking for moisture, and depending on your body, the amount may vary. So, what’s out there? 

blue steel

  • Lotion: Lotions tend to be more liquidy, lighter in weight, and thinner in texture because they contain higher amounts of water. Lotions are great for normal to slightly dry skin. 

  • Creams: Creams contain less water by comparison and a bit more oil. They’re usually thicker and work great for dry to extra dry skin. Creams can be a savior to those who deal with chapped skin from harsh, dry winter conditions. 

Choosing the right moisturizer for you

There are dozens if not hundreds of options to choose from, and the process in choosing a moisturizer that works for YOU can be overwhelming. For one, it takes time to see how your skin will take in and adjust to a new product. If the relationship with a product isn’t there, you could be left with sensitivity, irritations, and overall bad vibes. Nothing is worse than spending money on products that. don’t. work. Here’s how we suggest you start. 

Lotion on arm

Know your Skin Type

There are plenty of internet quizzes to help determine what kind of skin you have. Word of caution as many are gimmicky or marketed for brand-specific solutions. What I like about this video from Hyram on How to Find Your Skin Type is that he shares two different methods for finding your skin type. 

Method 1: Shower, wait, observe. Wash your face as normal but rather than applying products aftwards, let your skin rest for an hour or so. Check back in a mirror for shine or dryness. 

Method 2: Get close and personal with your pores. If your pores are larger you’re likely to have oily skin versus smaller pores with dryer skin. 

  • Oily
  • Dry
  • Combination
  • Sensitive 
  • Normal 

“Skin types mentioned in skin care product labeling, such as ‘for oily skin’ or ‘for dry skin,’ are not subject to any guidelines or standardization. That means products marketed to a particular type will produce a wide range of results — from product to product and from person to person” - Healthline, No BS Guide to Discovering Your Real Skintype

 Hawaiian girl in the sun

Know your Climate 

Don’t be confused to have oily skin if you’re in a climate that makes you sweat. Environmental climate conditions such as heat, humidity, altitude and aridness can affect your skin. Similarly, indoor conditions like air-conditioning and heaters may also have an affect on your skin. 


Check your Ingredients 

Always a cautionary tale… your ingredient list probably contains a fair few unfamiliar items. We’d like to draw your attention to a few of those. 

  • Alcohols: not all bad but definitely not all good. Alcohol can have a tendency to have a drying effect on skins, but there are some  Surprising Truths About Alcohol in Your Skin-care Products. At the very least, check where on the ingredient list an alcohol ingredient falls. Higher up = larger amounts which could be more irritating to the skin. 
  • Preservatives:  We’re talking parabens. You’ve probably heard “paraben free”, but why is that important? “Parabens (including methylparabens, isobutylparabens, proplyparabens, and others) are a family of preservatives that manufacturers use in skin care products to help prevent the growth of bacteria and mold.  There is strong evidence to indicate that this family of chemicals act as endocrine disruptors, meaning that they alter important hormone mechanisms in our bodies. There is also evidence to indicate that this class of ingredients is an allergen.” (Wells, 2021). 
  • SPF! Sun protection isn’t just for beach days. Check out this list of 21 Best Moisturizers with SPF.
  • Coconuts

    Applying Moisturizer the Right Way

    So you’ve locked in your skin type and you know your environmental conditions. Getting your moisturizer synched into your daily routine should be a fairly easy process. The best time to moisturize is with clean, damp skin. Easy to moisturize right out of the shower when you’re squeaky clean and your pores are open. There’s no real secret to the application process - apart from being gentle with your face. So, lather up and let your skin soak in the goods! 

    Surf soap beach girls

    Aloe Cream - The Best Body Cream for Any Salty Soul

    Make way for your skin's new favorite post-surf cocktail. Aloe and calendula heal and hydrate sunkissed or windburnt skin. Hawaiian Kukui nut oil is absorbed by the deepest layers of the skin and forms a protective barrier which will protect against environmental damage. It is used to treat sunburns, wind burn, eczema, psoriasis, dry skin, acne, scars, stretch marks and maturing skin. Banana softens and the essential-oil based scents delight.

    We utilize essential oils to scent our products, so they're going to be really close to the scents listed.  With our Aloe Cream, the scents were created to serve the 3 general categories, so hopefully at least one works for everyone.

    The Tangerine Vanilla has actually been the tester favorite. It has a really bright, fruity top note with subtle creamy vanilla that isn't super overpowering on the skin. 
    Bergamot Ginger is going to be a spicier, woodsier scent - think Moscow Mule, a limey ginger carried by things like coconut / vanilla to soften the spice. 
    Wild Hibiscus is our Floral note - we use things like jasmine, white tea, and frankincense to create a really herbal, flowery experience. 

    Grab your set today or add your favorite scent onto any Bundle!

    Out of Surf Soap ? - Repurpose your SS Tins! Take your empty tins to your local zero waste shop and get a refill of your favorite products! 

    Products change and prices change,  but what really happens is YOU change - you move to a new city, a new climate, stress happens, hormonal changes, you start a new hobby… you age… we’re all here embracing the changes and challenges of life. 

    Enjoy the sun, salt and surf! 



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