Many people suffer from dry skin during the winter. Not only does this feel uncomfortable, severe dryness can lead to other skin problems such as flaking and inflammation like eczema. Here are some ways to give skin the extra pampering it needs in this weather.
Get to the real root of the problem
It’s tempting to experiment with different beauty regimens, hoping to find the “holy grail” skincare line that can restore your skin’s balance. But dry skin is extremely sensitive and experimenting with different products may lead to breakouts. Talk to your dermatologist first so you can pinpoint the real triggers of your skin problems, and get recommendations on what ingredients to avoid.
Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize
You may need to have an oil-based moisturizer that can help lock in moisture. Avoid anything that can clog pores (such as shea oil) and opt for avocado oil, olive oil, or almond oil. Some facial care products also contain glycerine, sorbitol or AHAs, which all help boost skin moisture.
Don’t forget SPF
Snow glare can compound the usual UVA and UVB damage that can cause premature aging. Always use a broad spectrum sunscreen and let it set on your face for half an hour before you venture outdoors.
Take care of your hands
Your hands can also feel dry and cracked, and the wool on mittens can also irritate sensitive skin. You can try wearing cotton gloves underneath wool mittens, and moisturize as often as possible. Change your gloves if they get wet. Slathering a thick cream, olive oil, or even Vaseline over the hands at night can help.
Once a week, exfoliate with a face scrub and body scrub so that any moisturizers you will be using will penetrate the skin better. However, choose a gentle exfoliant. Avoid very harsh exfoliants or peels and swear off any toners that contain alcohol. For now, use a hydrating mask (like Clinique’s moisture surge) instead of a clay mask, which can be quite drying during the winter time.
Don’t overcleanse or over bathe
A very hot shower or bath can affect the skin’s lipid barriers, which lock in moisture. So keep your showers short and use lukewarm instead of very hot water. Use a body oil right after your bath to lock in moisture.
Photo from truestarhealth.com