Top 7 Tips for Keeping Winter Skin Clear and Radiant
We all know that winter can be harsh on skin. Thanks to the wind and cold dry air, winter’s chill causes dryness that can cause irritations and contribute to premature aging of the skin.
Yet, staying indoors with artificial air can also affect skin – a good air purifier can really help. The key is the right balance of indoor and outdoor air combined with the right skincare regime to keep skin looking dewy, fresh and hydrated.
Skincare industry sucks up the oil
In the 1980s, skincare companies launched campaigns against oily skin with products to purposely designed to dry and reduce shine, which were deemed undesirable “looks.” We were told that shiny, oily skin was not beautiful skin, and a generation was sucked in.
Today, we know more. We know better. Keeping skin hydrated is one of the keys to natural anti-aging and looking healthy all year long.
Environment plays a crucial role
While the humidity of summer can be uncomfortable, it’s very good to your skin. As the seasons change, low humidity and frigid temperatures combine to create dry air — and that extracts moisture from your skin. Even overheating your home can dehydrate skin, but then you also add products with harsh chemicals into the mix.
All of this combined can lead to itchy, cracked and even wind-burned skin that prematurely ages and is magnified with the application of makeup. Skin conditions such as eczema, rosacea or psoriasis may also flare up during these cold, dry months because it’s so difficult for your skin to retain moisture on its own.
No one wants to feel scratchy all winter, but it’s easy to become intimidated and overwhelmed by all of the products available.
Good skincare, as most dermatologists will tell you, should be simple: Use products with clean ingredients and focus on moisturizing.
Lucky for you, we have tips on how to keep your skin healthy and vibrant this winter.
- Read product ingredient labels and stay away from products that contain alcohol or many alcohol-based ingredients, which can dry skin out more. Look for skincare non-comedogenic products that won’t clog your pores. You’ll also want to ensure that products are free of Phthalates, fungicides and other harsh chemicals that can irritate and further dry skin.
- Again, don’t over dry skin: To avoid winter skin dullness, try to not over exfoliate skin or use astringents to purposely dry out skin. There’s a reason you aren’t supposed to wash your hair every day. The natural oils help hair stay healthy. The same is true for your skin.
- Oily is beautiful and healthy: It may seem counterintuitive, but don’t over dry your skin if it’s oily in nature. Instead, play to its natural balance and benefits. In fact, letting your skin get overly dry can actually trigger your body to produce more oil to try to compensate for what it senses is dehydration. Focus on gentle cleansers and moisturizers that are formulated specifically for oily skin and don’t rob the skin of natural oil by drying it out.
- Get a rub down: Skin actually craves ongoing hydration. A bath and a book on a cold winter day sound like the best staycation ever, but hot water can strip skin of natural oils and moisture. Skin begins to dry out immediately after a shower or long bath. This is the ideal time to lather on some moisturizing lotion or a healing therapy oil to help seal in moisture before more escapes. Enjoy it. Your skin deserves it.
- Nurture dry irritated skin with gentle ingredients: Natural botanicals such as calendula, chamomile, licorice, lavender, red clover and green tea have shown to be powerful in calming and soothing rough winter skin. Oatmeal is well-known for its universal, gentle and soothing healing of skin and can be helpful to severe irritation such as eczema and psoriasis.
- Buy a humidifier – Maintaining a balance of indoor humidity can make all the difference for winter skin. If you own a home, you can splurge for a humidifier that connects to the HVAC to supply a consistent humidity level throughout the home. However, small room and desk humidifiers have just as good results in keeping skin moisturized and a much gentler on the wallet.
- Water is your friend - And the most important tip of all is to stay hydrated. Dry, winter air naturally makes us thirstier, but the cold often has us making a warm cup of coffee, which can dehydrate the body. Drinking water is the number one way to keep your whole body, including skin, hydrated and happy. After all, the human body is made up of 60% water. Make sure to drink the minimum of almost 12 cups of water per day and drink whenever you feel thirsty. Drinking water has a load of benefits another being that it can keep organs clean and clear the body of free radicals. Seeing that the skin is the human body’s largest organ, water is the number one soldier working to keep us and our skin healthy every day.