Is winter weather leaving your skin feeling less than ideal? You’re not alone – colder temperatures and lower humidity levels result in dry air, which steals moisture from your skin every second of the day. And just when you think you’re safe inside, indoor heat and hot showers further rob the air of moisture! To fight back and keep your skin feeling smooth all season, follow these helpful DIY tips we at Coastal Dermatology & Surgery Center stand behind.
Drink more water.
Although we tend to drink less water during winter because hot drinks like cocoa are much more appealing, we can’t forget that our skin needs hydration. Keep water nearby at all times, and if you still crave something hot, warm water with lemon is very refreshing and hydrating.
Shower with lukewarm water.
We can’t deny that waking up to a hot shower feels great when it’s chilly inside. However, very hot showers can remove too much of your skin’s natural oils, which causes itching, redness, and dryness. Try to shower with lukewarm water instead, especially when washing your face and hands.
Moisturize after showering.
Skin craves moisture immediately after bathing, so store your favorite product somewhere close by and slather it on while your skin is still damp. This is the best time to seal and lock moisturizer into your skin.
And again, at night.
Hands, feet, elbows and knees are areas with thinner skin that tend to lose moisture faster than other parts of the body. Moisturizing at night before going to bed helps seal in moisture until the next morning.
Use a humidifier.
Because heating systems dry out air, a humidifier helps bring moisture back and prevents your skin from drying out. The best places to put humidifiers are the living room (a large area where everyone can benefit) and the bedroom.
Moisture can’t get in if your skin is rough with dead skin cells. Use exfoliating masks for your face and hands, as well as exfoliating body washes in the shower, followed by a layer of moisturizer.
Change up cleansers.
Certain cleansers can dry the skin to excess, especially during the winter season. If your cleanser contains benzoyl peroxide or salicylic/glycolic acid, try rotating out to a more hydrating option that contains moisturizing ingredients.
Avoid allergens and irritants.
Winter skin is more fragile, which means certain fabrics like wool and chemical-laden detergents may irritate your skin. This is especially true for those who get flare-ups from eczema, dermatitis and psoriasis. Avoid irritating fabrics and opt for mild detergents designed for sensitive skin.
Foods high in water content like apples, oranges, watermelon, celery, tomatoes and carrots help hydrate skin from the inside out. Be sure to also get enough Vitamin C and zinc to enhance collagen and elastin production. You should also consider an omega-3 supplement or eat more fatty fish and flaxseed for smoother, supple skin.
Protect with outerwear.
Gloves and scarves are a sure way to protect your skin from snow, rain, and blustery wind. And don’t forget about sunscreen! The winter sun can be just as damaging as it is in the summer, so be sure to apply it regularly on any exposed areas.
We may not be able to escape the cold winter season, but we can keep our skin healthy and comfortable by following these simple tips. If you’re unsure about what type of skin care products you should be using, our professionals are here to help! Not only do we carry a variety of products at our practice, but we’ll also assess your skin and recommend an effective regimen for your skin type. Contact us for more information!