Winterize Your Skin – Skin Care For Cold Weather

Seeing dry flaky patches on your skin? Does your skin feel tight and uncomfortable? Are your hands dry, chapped prone to paper cuts and even bleeding? If you have answered yes to some of the above you are suffering from “winter” skin. First and foremost you need to hydrate your skin but read on for tips and tricks to keep you skin look and feel soft and smooth all winter long.

  1. Remove dry skin. This is called “Exfoliation”. Use a loofah or body scrub on your body to exfoliate dry skin, however, you must be much more careful with the delicate facial skin. Even washing your face with a soft washcloth may be sufficient to gently exfoliate dry winter skin from the face. Take care with facial scrubs or peels as vigorous cleansing of the face may cause irritation or breakouts.
  2. Drink water. Keeping your skin hydrated from the inside is added insurance to keep skin feeling and looking it’s best. Drink up to 8 glasses of water or green tea. Caffeinated beverages rob skin of hydration, so limit coffee, soda and other caffeinated beverages.
  3. Protect skin from UV rays. It is important to use a sunscreen all year round to limit skin’s exposure to damaging UV rays. If you moisturizer does not include an SPF just simply add a few drops of your favorite sunscreen coupled with a few drops of your moisturizer to your palm. Warm the two together and apply to your face, neck and décolleté.
  4. Night time Treatment. Caring for your skin over-night is very important. While your body is at rest during the night it restores itself. Make sure to cleanse all traces of makeup off your face and top with a rich moisturizer. Use a dedicated eye cream around the eye contours because the delicate skin around the eyes is thinner than the rest of your face and cannot absorb the richer facial moisturizers. Rich facial moisturizers may cause your eyes to puff up and swell, so always use an eye cream on and around the eye contour.
  5. Hand, feet and Lips. Don’t forget your extremities in the cold weather. Dry cracked heels, lips or hands may bleed or ache with discomfort. Use a rich emollient like Vaseline or Aquaphor on hands and feet and cover with cotton gloves or socks to retain moisture while you sleep. Slough away dry flaky skin with a pumice stone on feet or a loofah during your shower as an added measure. Slather Vaseline or Aquaphor on lips just prior to bed for added hydration. Licking your lips will only add to dryness and chapping. Keep lips slick with balm or moisturizing ointment all day long.
  6. Avoid hot showers. As comforting as they may seem, they rob the skin of moisture! Try to use tepid water and avoid extreme temperatures on the skin all year round. Follow with baby-oil or body moisturizer after your shower or bath to lock in the moisture.
  7. Avoid Alcohol Based Skin Care Products. Alcohol is drying and will further rob your skin of much need moisture. Look at the top 3-4 ingredients in your skin care products and avoid using these products in the cold moisture-sapping winter weather.
  8. Use a humidifier. Keep one on overnight in your bedroom to add moisture to the air around you. This in turn will keep the heated air from robbing the hydration from your skin.
  9. Skip the soap. Soaps can be drying and harsh on the skin. Use a moisturizing cleansing bar or lotion, that will be less drying. This applies to face, hands and body.
  10. Most importantly: Add moisture. The cold outdoors coupled with overheated homes, offices and cars both contribute to drying out the skin. Using a moisturizer appropriate for your skin type both morning and night is the absolute best way to treat dryness.