No doubt, we are in the dead of winter and our dry, itchy skin is a tell tale sign of the frigid January climate. Blasting heaters, lack of humidity and freezing temperatures can really zap the moisture from your skin. To keep skin balanced and healthy, you’ll need to stick to a skin care regimen that focuses on gentle cleansing and deep moisturizing, especially during cold weather. Cleansing, exfoliating and moisturizing are the three keys to glowing skin when temperatures drop. Read on to learn how to keep skin moisturized and avoid products and routines that contribute to dry skin.
Winter Skin Care Guide & Things You’ll Need:
According to the American Academy of Dermatology
1-Â Drink water. Keeping yourself internally moisturized and nourished is the number one way to prevent dry skin, especially in cold weather. So fill up on liquids and stay away from excess caffeine and alcohol. The recommended six to eight glasses a day is a good guideline.
2 -Â Skin Brushing. Exfoliate once a week and use a body scrub before showering. Scrubbing your skin will help remove dead skin cells and promote healthy skin. Use a scrub that is paraben-free, or make your own by mixing 1/2 cup coarse sugar with one cup of coconut oil. Apply scrub to skin using gentle, circular motions. Scrub your whole body and then rinse off with lukewarm water.
3-Â Skin brush. This is a recommended treatment by the American Academy of Dermatology for dry skin. You can purchase a special skin brush at drugstores or on the Internet. Skin brushing removes dead skin cells, stimulates your lymphatic system and is healthy for your circulation. To brush your skin, start from your feet using firm circular motions. Move up your body, brushing your legs, buttocks, back and torso. When you reach your chest and shoulders, brush in short sweeping motions down to your heart.
4-Â Use less hot water. Soapy hot water will deplete the natural oils from your skin. Your shower or bath should be lukewarm temperature. Also, keep your bathing times short, between 4-5 minutes, especially in the winter. And stay away from bubble baths that contain chemicals and alcohols. Use a natural or organic bath soak instead.
5-Â Use a good moisturizing cleanser. Many organic and natural brands sell moisturizing, gentle soaps made with essential oils and healthy plant extracts. Wash with soap only in areas where perspiration and dirt accumulates. These areas are typically your hands, feet, underarms and groin area. Stay away from deodorant soaps. These soaps are notorious for drying out skin.
6-Â Use a good moisturizer after your bath or shower. CrÃ¨me and balm moisturizers are designed to seal the top layer of the skin, locking in moisture. Lotions are known as humectants, and are absorbed by skin. Aloe vera and coconut and sesame oil are fantastic humectants to apply after bathing. Use a balm or crÃ¨me at night and lotion during the day.
7- Put moisturizer on your hands and slip on a pair of gloves before going outside. At night, apply moisturizer to your feet and wear socks to bed. Your feet will feel dewy and moisturized in the morning.
8-Â Moisturize your lips. The skin on your lips retain less moisture than other parts of the body. Use a good lip balm to lock in moisture. If you have severely dry lips, try medicated lip balms which contain extra-moisturizing ingredients like camphor. To remove dead skin from you lips, brush them gently with a toothbrush once a week. Then apply a good moisturizing balm. Vaseline is a time-tested favorite and suggested on many medical and beauty Web sites.
9-Â Take extra care of your face. Over cleansing can dry out skin, so only cleanse once-a-day. Try using a gentle cream cleanser at night to remove dirt. Apply moisturizer after cleansing. In the morning, skip the soap and rinse face with lukewarm water. This will prevent the stripping of excess oils from the skin, especially in the winter. Throughout the day, spritz face with facial water (Evian sells a good one) to replenish your skin. Or try spraying your face with rose water. Rose water is available at health food stores.When choosing a moisturizer, remember that crÃ¨mes are heavier, an might be best for use at night. A facial lotion, one with sunscreen is best for day use, according to the American Academy of Dermatology.To remove dry, dead skin, exfoliate your face bi-weekly using a gentle scrub
Check out this video: Facing Facts of Winter Skincare
Self Magazine beauty director Elaine D’Farley spoke to Maggie Rodriguez about winter skincare and defaced some myths about moisturizers, dandruff and the cold weather.