Winter weather is no friend to your skin – it’s cold, it’s windy, and every place you go has the drying indoor heating cranked up. Follow these beauty tips to make sure you keep your skin protected.
1. While you’re at home or in the office, use a humectant-based moisturizer from head to toe. These types of moisturizers hydrate your skin and actually draw moisture in from the air. Common humectant ingredients include glycerine, honey and hyaluronic acid.
2. If you’re facing harsher weather, you’ll need a stronger, occlusive moisturizer. These products are usually thicker and less absorbent than regular moisturizers, but they protect your skin by creating a barrier between it and the elements. Vaseline is a common example, but other options include products with petrolatum or silicon.
3. Sometimes skin can become so sensitive to cold that it erupts into an angry red rash. Soothe super-irritated spots with an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory hydrocortisone cream.
4. During the warmer months, it might be fine to moisturize your skin only once a day, but in the winter, keep mini-moisturizers on hand in case you need a mid-day reapplication.
5. Skip the long, hot shower. It’s tempting, but spending too much time under water will just dry out your skin more. And when you do get out of the shower, lock in moisture right away by slathering on body cream while your skin is still damp.
6. Sometimes moisturizer isn’t enough. If your skin is really dry and flaky, the dead skin cells will block access to the new skin underneath. Make sure to exfoliate both your face and body skin with a gentle scrub, loofah, or fruit enzyme exfoliator.
7. Clean with kindness. Consider swapping your facial cleanser for something more mild (like Cetaphil), and using a shower gel that contains moisturizing ingredients like shea butter instead of drying soap or shower gels that contain alcohol.
8. Dry indoor air is a major cause of dull winter skin. Add some moisture to the air in your home with a humidifier. Low tech (read: cheaper) options include letting water boil on the stove or leaving bowls of water near the radiators.
9. If your lips are perma-chapped, ditch lip balms with potentially irritating ingredients like menthol (and forget about plumpers). Give your pucker a scrub with brown sugar and honey to slough away dead skin.
10. Don’t forget the SPF! Just because it’s -40 doesn’t mean the sun won’t still damage your skin if you head out unprotected.