By Kim McDermott, Wellness Manager

Summertime in Iowa is a great time for getting outside and enjoying the sunshine and the beauty of the natural world.  And though you may love the sun and the outdoors, these hot, windy, buggy summer days can take a toll on your skin and body. So if you’re playing hard this summer, be sure to arm yourself with a good quality sunscreen, bug spray, and other items to protect your skin and body.

Below are a few of my top favorite must haves for summer.

HiBar Solid Face Wash Bars

HiBar is on a mission to rid the world of unnecessary plastic, and to that end have successfully created a soap free solid facial bar with NO plastic packaging and no messy spillage during travel!   This vegan face wash is a truly effective and gentle cleanser and won’t dry out your skin.  Use the hydrate formula for sensitive to normal skin, or the cleanse formula for a stronger cleansing action.

Mad Hippie Hydrating Facial Mineral Sunscreen

Keep this in your bag and you’ll never be caught without sunscreen when you need it!  Mad Hippie uses the mineral Zinc Oxide to provide safe, broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protectionThis unique hydration formula also adds in hyaluronic acid, vitamin C and antioxidant-rich oils like carrot seed oil to add skin-drenching moisture.  Reef safe, vegan and fragrance free.  

Heritage Store Rosewater Facial Mist

Heritage has created a beautiful facial mist with vortexed water that is an absolute go-to during the hot summer months Its lovely rose scent is as pleasant for the nose as it is for the skin Use as a hydrating toner under a moisturizer or serumWhen kept in the fridge during the summer months, it’s incredibly refreshing as a midday pick-me-up.

Derma-E Vitamin C & Glow Face Oils

A lovely, skin nourishing face oil with some unique hydrating ingredients like sea buckthorn oil and red raspberry seed oil, for natural skin protection. Vitamin C and turmeric benefit skin tone, while mica adds a luminous, healthy glow to the skin.

Trace Minerals Electrolyte Powerpaks

Before discovering PowerPaks, the women in the Wellness department wonder how they got along at all without these! No doubt you’ve heard of the importance of using electrolytes during the hot summer months and when working out, but electrolytes are beneficial any time of the year for peak performance and adequate hydration. PowerPaks come in a variety of natural flavors with only 1 gram of sugarAdditionally, they contain Vitamin C, electrolytes including magnesium, potassium, and sodium, and trace minerals.  For those who have to work outdoors in the heat, the Trace Minerals ZeroLyte sports electrolyte mixes with extra sodium would be especially beneficial.

Life Flow Magnesium Lotion

If you’ve already discovered the benefits of oral magnesium, you know how necessary this mineral is for bone and nerve health, along with its calming and stress-busting effects.  Magnesium lotion is an alternative way to get magnesium, useful for those who don’t want to take it orallySince it’s absorbed through the skin, it’s great for soothing sore muscles after a day of active work or playThis lotion is perfect before bedtime to assist with relaxation and sleep. 

Badger Bug Spray

With all the welcome rain in May, we’re seeing a local explosion of pesky mosquitoes! (Great for the local birds, not so great for the humans)We want something safe for the kids and family, but also effectiveBadger’s deet-free formula repels mosquitoes using natural essential oils like lemongrass, geranium, cedarwood, rosemary and citronella.  Natural insect repellents need to be applied more frequently than deet based formulas, but will still do the job of protecting from mosquitoes, without the nasty chemicals.

Allercetin Allergy and Sinus Formula

Allergy season is starting earlier and lasting longer, which is bad news for those who already struggle mightily with sinus and hayfever symptoms.  Source Naturals Allercetin offers a holistic approach for allergy and sinus symptoms using homeopathic quercetin and ingredients that address runny nose, congestion, and itchy, watery eyes.  Allercetin’s formula is an effective, gentle alternative that won’t cause drowsiness or troublesome rebound congestion that can occur with certain nasal decongestant sprays.  If you prefer a single ingredient option, try Quercetin, an antioxidant flavonoid that supports healthy sinus and respiratory function, and naturally fights inflammation.