Brrr! It’s almost that time of year again. Late fall months bring cooler weather and dry skin while we transition into the winter season. When temperatures start to fall, our skin takes a beating. Winter weather makes skin dehydrated, scaly, rough and red at times. Chilly wind and frosty air are harsh and abrasive for our skin. When the onset of dry skin starts, we all whip out our handy-dandy Chapstick, lotion and face moisturizer. Beat cold winter blues this year with these skin care tips.
- Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. There’s no such thing as too much moisturizer during the winter months. Skin needs to stay hydrated and plump to avoid flaking and even eczema, a severe dry skin inflammation. Your skin care routine should change with the seasons. Instead of using a water-based moisturizer, switch to an oil-based one. The oil will create a protective layer on the skin that retains more water than a cream or lotion. (Many night creams are actually oil-based.) Not all oils are face-friendly so look for non-clogging oils such as avocado, mineral, primrose or almond oil.
- Keep your hands hydrated and warm. Did you know the skin on our hands is thinner than other parts of the body? Fewer oil glands on your hands mean it’s harder to keep them moisturized. Give your hands a break (and some lovin’) by wearing gloves and applying lotion a few times during the day. Some dermatologists even suggest using lotion every time after we wash our hands.
- Use a humidifier in your home. Heaters blast hot, dry air that can irritate our skin. Setting up a humidifier will help moisture spread and circulate, preventing dry skin. Plus, it will aid in getting over the ever-dreaded winter cold. Breathing air that contains moisture can break up phlegm in your nose and chest.
- Decrease frequency of masks and peels. Yes, it’s relaxing to slather on a face mask after a long day but during cooler weather, these harsh chemicals and alcohol-based toners and astringents can strip oil vital to hydration. Look for deeply hydrating masks instead of clay-based masks, and use them less often.
- Don’t forget your feet! The bottoms of our feet see lots of wear and tear, especially if you stand on them all day. Remember to let your feet rest every now and then. Lather thick lotion containing petroleum jelly or glycerin on your calluses instead of usual foot lotion. Exfoliate periodically to remove the dead skin. This helps the moisturizer penetrate deeper and faster.