Winter Skin Care Tips: Prevent and Combat Dryness
'Tis the season to have dry skin? Not if the proper winter skincare can help it! As temperatures start to drop, so do humidity and moisture levels. Add chilly winds, and you have the formula for irritated, chapped and itchy skin. By practicing the following cold-weather skin care regimen, help your skin survive the cold weather.
1. Cover Your Skin.
The best offense is a solid defense: When the harsh winds and bone-shaking cold come a-knockin’, bundle up with the proper attire, such as a pea coat, scarves or proper layering. Avoid fabrics like rough wool that can aggravate already chapped skin.
Sunblock is a vital component of skin care, even in the wintertime. Cover visible skin with a substantial amount of moisturizing sunblock with a high SPF, especially when participating in winter sports or when exposed to snow.
2. Turn Down the Heat.
Though an extra hot, long shower may seem deliciously refreshing on a cold morning, that feel-good sensation is fleeting and actually damaging. The hot water drains essential moisture from the skin. Once out of the shower, the low humidity of winter air is another dehydrating factor.
Opt for a shorter, lukewarm shower. If the bathroom is far too cold for a satisfying shower, try warming up the room with a bathroom-safe space heater. What’s more, take showers and baths before bed instead of in the morning. Immediate contact with cold, dry air will evaporate any moisture in your skin.
3. Modify Your Cleansing Soaps and Tools Routine.
Just as your wardrobe changes when it gets colder, so should your cleansing routine of soaps and tools. During the winter, focus on moisturizing over exfoliating. Rather than harsher body soap, reach for a creamy body wash.
Moreover, use milder and gentler exfoliators and cleansers than your summertime selections. Avoid unnatural additives such as fragrances and detergents that remove protective and essential oils. Instead, look for nourishing, non-drying and natural ingredients, such as oatmeal, cocoa butter, jojoba oil, avocado oil, olive oil and vitamin E.
After your shower, don’t forcefully rub your skin with a towel. Gently pat yourself dry, but leave a slight dampness, which is an ideal foundation for the next step of lotions to seal in moisture.
3. Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize.
Your skin will be desperately craving the comfort of a good moisturizer. Invest in proper lotions, including facial moisturizers, body lotions, body butters and moisturizing creams. Creams are best for rough areas, including elbows, knees, hands and feet. You should moisturize:
- After A Shower/Bath: Apply a generous amount of body lotion all over your body and the correct facial moisturizer to your face.
- After Washing Your Hands: Using hand soap or hand sanitizer means contact with alcohol and/or hot water, which greatly dries out the skin. Apply a thick hand cream or lotion to counteract the dehydration.
- Before Bed: After applying lotion to your hands and feet, put on a pair of cotton gloves and pair of cotton socks. This will permit the skin to heal overnight. For extra dry skin, try using Vaseline or petroleum jelly for maximum relief.
4. Use a Humidifier in the Home.
Especially when a heater is running, the humidity level inside your home drops and greatly dries out the skin. Using a humidifier will help to combat the aridness and increase general comfort in the home.
5. Follow a Healthy Diet.
Fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and good cholesterol are especially valuable during a dry winter. These can be found in a diet chock full of veggies, fish, lean meats and whole grain products of bread and rice. Also, egg yolks and Swiss chard cheese contain biotin, which produces plenty of fatty acids for extra smooth skin and hair.
Consider adding supplements to your diet, such as Vitamin B pills and omega-3 fish oil pills, for even more fatty acids and beneficial oils.
In addition, limit any vices, including caffeine, alcohol and cigarette smoking. When consumed or used excessively, these can further dry out your skin. Of course, drink plenty of water to both quench your thirst and your skin’s thirst.
Don’t let winter dry skin ruin your joyful holiday season. With the right attention and care, your skin will look and feel fresh even on the coldest and windiest of days.