Maintaining your winter skincare can be difficult when the cold hair sucks all the moisture out your skin. If you already struggle with dry skin throughout the rest of the year, the winter can make you feel like you’re constantly at battle with your skin. With the dry air and intense indoor heat causing your skin to dry out, you might need to take a few additional steps outside your daily moisturizer. Here are the best skincare tips and tricks you should try when the cold winter weather dries out your skin.
Add A Moisturizing Serum
Serums can be a perfect addition to your winter skincare routine to help combat your extra dry skin. Look for serums with vitamin C and hyaluronic acid, which are extremely hydrating products and can reduce the redness that is often caused by chilly weather. Vitamin C serums are filled with antioxidants, which protect healthy skin cells from sun damage. Additionally, vitamin C promotes healthy collagen production, which can benefit overall skin health and decrease the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. With all of its incredible benefits, serums, particularly vitamin C serums, can be incredibly helpful for keeping your skin healthy and hydrated this winter.
Try A Heavy Cream Moisturizer
Moisturizers are a staple in keeping your skin nourished and hydrated throughout the year, but winter calls for a more intense product. Instead of turning to your moisturizing lotion, opt for a heavier cream moisturizer that contains ceramides and hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid packs in that extra hydration into your skin, while ceramides help protect your skin’s barrier, which can become more fragile in the colder months. If you struggle with dry skin throughout the year, be sure to apply a heavy layer of your cream moisturizer both in the morning and right before bed.
Add Moisture To Your Home
While the air outside might be dry and cold, there are ways you can increase the moisture levels in the air in your own home. Investing in a humidifier for your home can help keep your skin hydrated throughout the day. Keep a humidifier in rooms you spend the most time in, especially in your bedroom. In addition to adding moisture to the air in your home, avoid blasting the heat, as this can make the air in your home drier. Aim to keep your home temperature to around 70 degrees to keep your home warm and maintain some moisture in the air.
Adjust Your Diet
When you’re dealing with overly dry skin, you can make changes beyond just your winter skincare routine. Adding some omega-3, omega-6 and healthy fatty acids to your daily diet helps maintain a healthy cell membrane, which will help your skin cells retain water and moisture. You can add these important fatty acids by taking supplements, or by eating foods that contain heavy amounts of them, such as fish, olive oil and avocados.
Exfoliate Your Skin
If your skin gets dry and flakey, especially in the winter time, investing in an exfoliator will help remove those dry and dead skin cells. Exfoliating consistently will help unclog and decongest your skin, so it can absorb more moisture and nutrients. There are many types of exfoliants you can look into, such as a gentle exfoliating scrub, or a chemical exfoliator. Opting for a gentle option 2-3 times a week will help give your skin a nice, clean slate for the rest of your winter skincare routine. Additionally, you can try dry brushing, which stimulates the lymphatic system and supports skin detoxification.
Take A Shorter, Cooler Shower
While you might think that the steam from a long, hot shower will help bring some moisture into your dry winter skin, taking a shorter and cooler shower is more beneficial for your skin. Aim to take a 5-10 minute shower with lukewarm water to prevent from irritating your skin with overly hot water. This rule also applies to washing your hands, as incredibly hot water can irritate your skin on your hands.
Avoid Products With Alcohol And Fragrance
While it might be tempting to use a face wash that smells like coconuts or flowers, those fragrances can oftentimes be quite irritating to your already dry winter skin. Additionally, avoid products that contain alcohol, which can tend to dry out your skin. Toners typically contain alcohol, so avoiding toners might be a safe choice during winter. Make sure you are carefully reading ingredient labels to check for either of these ingredients, as some products don’t always specify if they are alcohol or fragrance free.
Use A Gentle Cleanser
When washing your face first thing in the morning or before bed, you want to make sure you are using a gentle cleanser that doesn’t strip your skin of its natural oils. Instead of using cleansers that are high in fragrance and alcohol, opt for an option with natural and gentle ingredients such as chamomile or oatmeal that will help calm irritated skin, will leave you with a clear slate on your skin and will help retain your skin’s natural moisture and oils. Using a gentle cleanser to start off your winter skincare routine is key to help you retain moisture in your skin.
Keep Using SPF
When you look out your window on a chilly winter morning and see the cloudy skies, you might think SPF isn’t necessary. Despite this assumption, you should still use your sunscreen or SPF products throughout the winter time. The sun’s harmful and damaging UV rays can still get through those clouds and proceed to damage your skin, so it is just as important to apply sunscreen in the winter time as it is during the summer. Additionally, the white snow will reflect up to 80 percent of the sun’s rays as well, which increases your exposure to harmful UV rays.
Adjusting your winter skincare routine is vital to keeping your skin hydrated and healthy as you take on the chilly weather. As winter rapidly approaches, hopefully this list of tips helps you figure out what preventative measures to take in preparation for the cold and dry winter air.
Lara Hill is a senior Public Relations major at Emerson College from Groton, Massachusetts. She has contributed to several college publications, holding multiple editing positions and focusing mainly on sports journalism. When she is not in class or writing, she loves to sail, watch sports with her friends and family, sing with her sisters, and play with her dog, Cassie.