Holy polar vortex! Below freezing temperatures, wind, ice and snow can take a toll on your skin–not to mention the dry air when you’re inside. What can be done to combat the effects of these harsh winter conditions? We’ve put together a guide with winter skincare tips and tricks to get you through the season.
Get a Good Humidifier
If you have a whole house humidifier, that’s the best, but if not, a regular one will still help stave off itchy, dry skin. (And it’s good for your sinuses too!) Increasing moisture levels in the air replenishes dehydrated skin, so run your humidifier whenever you’re at home.
Increase water intake. Internal hydration is even more effective than external hydration at keeping skin well-fed. An easy calculation is to drink half your body weight in ounces each day. 150 pounds = 75 ounces of water/day. If you’re not a fan of plain water, try infusing it with fruit.
Don’t Forget to Exfoliate
A common mistake when dry skin appears is to slather on more moisturizer. But the key to moisturizers working is to remove the barrier of dead skin. Proper exfoliation, both physical (scrub) and chemical (alpha hydroxy acids, retinoids) will allow any moisturizer or serum to be more easily absorbed into the skin.
Keep Yourself Covered
Hide from the elements. When outside, cover your skin from the wind and snow by protecting it using scarves, hoods, face masks, etc.
Resist the Urge to Take a Hot Shower
Avoid hot water–yes, even on those extra cold mornings when it would feel so good to start the day with a steaming hot shower. Hot water saps skin of moisture. And after a bath or shower, always moisturize or slather on body oil as soon as you get out.
Use Your Sunscreen – Always!
Even on days that seem gloomy and gray, keep using an SPF. You are just as likely to get burned or damaged from the sun during wintertime, regardless of sunshine. Here are some of our safe sunscreen picks.
It can seem like an easy decision to skip your exercise routine when you can’t go anywhere. But keep moving! Exercise is so important for our skin, mind and body. Search for exercise routines you can do at home. If you have stairs, run up and down them for 20 minutes. Don’t have weights? Used canned goods. Mat pilates routines typically need no equipment.
This post was medically reviewed by Dr. Rina Mary Allawh, M.D., a dermatologist who performs adult and pediatric medical dermatology, skin cancer treatment and cosmetic dermatology. Learn more about Hello Glow’s medical review board here. As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor.33