Winter is here and the approaching colder temperatures can wreak havoc on your skin. The cold weather strips your skin of its natural moisture, resulting in sensitivity, redness, and irritation. Here are six dermatologist-recommended proactive skin care tips that can work to fight winter’s wrath on your skin and keep it healthy and smooth.
- Moisturize: Be it summer or winter, moisturizing your skin is important to avoid dryness and keep it supple. The colder weather pulls moisture from the skin, leaving it dry, itchy and lacking luster. Using a good quality moisturizer will hydrate the skin’s outer layers and hold the moisture in. Remember that, like your wardrobe, your skin care also needs a change each season. The moisturizer that you use in summer might not be suitable for the winter. For oily skin, water-based, non-comedogenic moisturizers are the best choice, whereas dry skin would need a heavier, oil-based moisturizer. Applying oil on your face and body prior to using a cream-based moisturizer will also help trap in the hydration during the colder months.
- Exfoliate Once a Week: To remove dead skin cells accumulated from dry winter air, exfoliate your skin gently once a week. But remember to not over do it, because overdoing exfoliation can disrupt the outer skin layer, leading to dryness and irritation.
- Avoid hot showers: Hot water evaporates fast and can strip your skin of its essential, natural moisture and damage its protective barrier, leaving you with drier skin. So avoid hot showers or prolonged contact with hot water. Limit your shower time and make sure the water is lukewarm. Remember to moisturize immediately – while your skin is damp – with a rich moisturizer to lock in hydration and prevent dryness.
- Sunscreen with SPF is a must: You might think that sunscreens are only necessary in summer season, but that’s wrong. Though there is less UVB around in winter, levels of UVA are still significant as its rays can permeate clouds and still cause damage enough to age the skin. To protect your skin in winter, use a sunscreen that specifically has a high UVA rating.
- Take care of your lips and skin around the eyes: The colder temperature tends to leave the lips dry and chapped. To avoid that and to get smooth and supple lips, invest in a good lip balm. The skin in the eye area is delicate and has little-to-no oil glands to protect itself. Pay extra attention to this area, irrespective of the season, because it is the first to show signs of aging. Experts recommend using quality serums and oils to soothe and protect the skin around the eyes.
- Invest in a humidifier: As much as 50–60% of the human body is made of water. The cold winter air pulls the moisture out, causing dry skin, chapped lips and possibly even bloodshot eyes. To avoid these concerns, invest in a good quality humidifier. A humidifier adds moisture to the air and improve itchy skin, peeling or chapped lips, and eye irritation.
Following these proactive tips can ease common winter-related concerns and keep your skin soft and supple.