No matter where you live when the temperatures begin to drop and the air gets dry; your skin needs more protection and a change in your routine. You know that horrible itchy feeling of dry, chapped skin, or the pain of windburn and the flush of a rebound sunburn. Just because you don’t get to bask in the sun doesn’t mean your skin is safe.
When winter comes, it’s time to revamp your skincare routine and keep your largest organ protected, nourished, moisturized, and looking phenomenal. We’ve got the tips that will help you establish your new seasonal routine, and do it with ease.
Protection, protection, protection
If you’re wondering how best to protect your skin in the winter, you’ve come to the right place. We want to commend you for thinking of protection first because to be perfectly honest; it’s the most important thing.
Use these tips as a guideline, but customize your skincare routine to fit your environment and lifestyle best. Not all tips work for all people.
♦ Cover up. You want to bundle up to stay warm and protect yourself, and this is a great instinct. Cover as much of your skin as you can to prevent serious conditions like frostbite and frost burn and to curb more common skin concerns like sun damage and dry, chapped skin.
♦ Moisturize. Your skin’s moisture evaporates at a quicker pace in dry air, and you produce less natural oil. These are powerful reasons to use a thicker moisturizer and to use it more frequently.
♦ Sunscreen. Just because you can’t see the sun and it’s not hot outside, doesn’t mean it’s not there. We’re still being bombarded by UV rays all the time, and rebound glare off ice and snow can be even more powerful, so it’s essential to pray to the sunscreen gods.
♦ Don’t forget your lips. Your lips are part of your skin and can take the brunt of a cold and windy day. Carry a moisturizing lip balm and use it regularly. Some lip balms smell and feel great, but can actually make your lips worse. Make sure to steer clear of phenol, menthol, and camphor. You’ll also do your lips a favor if you can try to avoid fragrances, they’re not necessary.
Just add this
Now that your skin is protected, you want to nourish and moisturize it. You knew those two things would be key, didn’t you? Yes, they’re always going to be a priority when it comes to healthy skin, but during the cold, dry months, the way you nourish and moisturize might change.
The following ingredients are a great way to double down and really focus on healthy skin.
♦ Retinol moisturizer. Retinol is an over-the-counter, little sister to tretinoin. The big sister, tretinoin, is used to reverse sun damage and signs of aging by giving the skin a hefty dose of a vitamin A derivative. Retinol is an easy way to mimic these benefits without a prescription. It helps with fine lines, skin tone, collagen production, and circulation.
♦ Urea cream. Urea is used to treat dry, rough, and scaly skin conditions. People with eczema and psoriasis are typically very familiar with this ingredient. You can get a low percentage, over-the-counter version of this product in some lotions. It’s not something to use daily, but it’s great when you need it.
♦ Ceramides. If you hear the word ceramide a lot in connection with skincare, there’s a reason for it. Ceramides are a natural part of your skin’s defense system. They provide a barrier between your skin and the elements. Adding a moisturizer or a product that has additional ceramides will help your body do what it does naturally.
♦ Hyaluronic acid. Another hot-button term when it comes to skincare is hyaluronic acid. This is also something your body makes on its own, but it gets depleted over time. You can take it as a supplement, or find a great moisturizer that features this ingredient.
♦ Healthy foods with good fats. While you’re working hard to nourish and moisturize from the outside, paying attention to what you put in your body is important, too. Focus on good fats like omega 3 fatty acids and nutrient-dense fat foods like avocados, salmon, dark chocolate, dairy products, nuts, and both coconut and olive oils. Skip the temptation to overindulge in sugary sweets and alcohol.
To put it simply
Even if you’re not spending much time outside and you’re no longer sweating in the sunshine, your body is still vulnerable to the elements, probably more so.
To keep your skin healthy, you need a two-step approach. The first part involves protection, and the second part is a double-whammy of nourishment and moisturizer.
Protection is pretty easy to accomplish. Just use sunscreen, moisturizers, and cover up as much skin as possible. Nourishing and moisturizing can happen from the inside and the outside, the more you do this from both sides of the coin, the healthier your skin will be.