How Sulfur Can Help Heatproof Your Skin, From A Dermatologist
Your warm weather skin care routine probably looks a bit different from your winter lineup. You may prioritize lighter formulas, cleanse more often, or ramp up the antioxidants. But are you doing anything to heatproof your skin? Below, find out exactly what this means and a simple trick.
How sulfur can help heatproof your skin
When your skin is exposed to high temperatures, your chances of sporting an oily complexion, triggering breakouts, and constant flushing go way up.
The secret: Find a product with sulfur in it. Board-certified dermatologist Shereene Idriss, M.D., FAAD (aka the "Pillowtalk Derm"), recently reviewed the benefits of this buzzy ingredient in a TikTok video—according to Idriss, the single ingredient can help protect your skin from those negative impacts that come with heat exposure.
"Sulfur acne treatments are the treatments you didn't know you needed, especially if you have oily skin," she says. But there's more to those benefits than meets the eye, even for non-breakout-prone skin types:
- It's antimicrobial: "It has antimicrobial properties1, so it's going to kill the bacteria on your skin that can cause those cystic, juicy pimples," she explains.
- It's exfoliating: "It offers gentle exfoliation, so it acts like a comedolytic; meaning, if you have a lot of little blackheads or whiteheads, it can break them up and get rid of them from the bottom out," Idriss says.
- It regulates sebum production: "It's going to regulate how you make oil on your skin," she says, which is ideal for anyone prone to an oily T-zone during warmer months.
- It has anti-inflammatory effects: "If you have rosacea, it can help reduce the look of redness," Idriss explains.
Those with skin on the drier side may want to use sulfur treatments less often, as the ingredient can make the skin appear even more dry. Or you can simply use it as a spot treatment for the occasional oily or inflamed spot.
As always, be sure to patch test the ingredient behind your ear or on your arm to ensure you don't have an allergic reaction.
You can minimize the negative impacts of heat on the skin by using sulfur in your skin care routine. This ingredient can help eliminate acne-causing bacteria, exfoliate the skin, balance oil production, and reduce inflammation. For even more tips on treating textured skin, check out this guide. Spoiler: Sulfur isn't the only skin-balancing hero!
Hannah Frye is the Assistant Beauty & Health Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.S. in journalism and a minor in women’s, gender, and queer studies from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Hannah has written across lifestyle sections including skin care, women’s health, mental health, sustainability, social media trends, and more. She previously interned for Almost 30, a top-rated health and wellness podcast. In her current role, Hannah reports on the latest beauty trends and innovations, women’s health research, brain health news, and plenty more.