Natalie (@natwilson976) tells us her top tips for how to look after your skin in the winter months.
Harsh winter weather is not good for your skin. The cold weather and low humidity, combined with dry air, can cause havoc with our skin and messes up our moisture levels. Without the proper care, dry and un-moisturised skin can lead to serious skin problems and cause stubborn dry patches and cracks which can be hard to clear up.
Additional moisture can often help, but there are more ways in which you can reduce problematic skin issues throughout the winter months.
Use Lukewarm Water
After time in the cold, it can be tempting to get home and run a hot, soothing bath. But, in order to provide proper skin care, then it’s best to use lukewarm water to bathe and wash your face. Hot water can quickly dry out your skin and, after hot baths and shower, moisturising will protect your skin against any cracks or dry patches and even from developing eczema.
As well as relaxing, bath time is the perfect opportunity to rehydrate your skin. If you suffer from eczema, then a few drops of bath oil will help to gently soothe the skin and reduce any discomfort and itching. You can also use intensive face masks, which along with the steam, will help to de-clog your pores and help it to breathe.
Choose Skin Products Wisely
What may keep your skin happy in the summer can be detrimental to your skin’s health in the winter months, so you need to adjust your products with the seasons. When it comes to having healthy skin in the winter, it’s all about using mild and gentle skin care products.
If you often suffer from spot breakouts or acne, then you should try and use products which contain ceramides or hyaluronic acid to aid your skin’s repair. Avoid harsh masks and facial peels, or products containing alcohol, as these will just strip your skin of natural oils and moisture.
Thanks to thick Halloween and Christmas glitter makeup, your skin can quickly become dry and flakey after all of the occasions and parties that take place during the winter months. Choosing the right skin care products in the run up to the occasions and in the days following are vital when it comes to protecting your skin. Be sure to prep your skin properly with a heavy moisturiser before any heavy makeup is applied and, during removal, use a cleanser that contains moisturiser.
During the winter, your skin is bound to become slightly more sensitive. Thanks to dry air and high central heating, it’s vital that you stay hydrated during the day to keep your skin in its best condition.
Gentle cleansing is essential as you want to keep your skin’s moisture barrier as healthy as you can. If your skin often feels tight and uncomfortable after washing, then your skin barrier may be disrupted. Your skin should feel soft and calm after washing, so if you’re immediately using moisturiser afterwards, you may need to change products.
If using cleanser, then it is important that you don’t leave skin bare for longer than 30 seconds. This can dehydrate skin further and lead to increased dryness. Be sure to apply a hydrating toner and gentle moisturiser to seal in moisture.
Use An Overnight Moisturiser
Areas such as your hands, feet and elbows all have thinner skin layers than the rest of your body. They also tend to lose moisture quicker than any other area, so consider using a deep or night moisturiser at night and wearing cotton socks, gloves or pyjamas overnight. It’s easy to get into this habit after a shower in the evening, and you’ll wake up to softer, more hydrated skin.
Don’t Over Exfoliate
We often forget to help our skin with exfoliation, especially in the winter. Regular exfoliating can help moisture get into your skin’s natural barrier, get rid of dead skin cells and can increase your skin’s appearance when followed up with moisturiser.
However, your skin barrier may well be slightly damaged due to the cold weather. Try and exfoliate once a week to help skin regeneration. If you suffer from dry skin, you should avoid exfoliation completely as it may well damage your skin further. There are many times of different exfoliators available and natural exfoliators are increasing in popularity. Exfoliators can vary widely when it comes to coarseness, so you may need to buy different ones for your face and body.