Photo credit Agustin Rafael Reyes/Flickr
Please tell me I’m not the only whose skin gets dry and sad in the winter. I’ve (mostly) learned to combat it, but if I get lazy, it’s easy for a harsh, cold winter day to make my skin so dry that it cracks and bleeds (!). It’s not pretty, so here’s what I do to keep it from happening.
Drink the daily recommended amount of water.
You’ve probably heard that drinking water helps keep your skin looking fresh and young. Although drinking water won’t suddenly make your skin glow or erase all of your wrinkles, if you stick to drinking the recommended daily amount — that’s about 9 cups for women, and 13 cups for men — then you’ll be properly hydrated, which is inherently good for your skin and your body. According to BBC, there’s even a correlation between staying hydrated and having resilient skin. So drink up!
Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize.
I can’t emphasize this enough. My skin would be nothing if not for my daily moisturizing routine. I use Palmer’s Cocoa Butter for my body, and a separate facial moisturizer (since the skin on my face is a bit more sensitive). I apply both right after my shower which, according to Mayo Clinic, can help trap water into surface cells.
When selecting your moisturizer, aim for one that has some type of SPF so that it doubles as a protectant for skin. Otherwise, select a moisturizer based on the type of skin you have (oily, dry, or combination).
If you’re not sure where to start, give one of these a try:
- Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer SPF 30 (I’ve been using this moisturizer every day, without fail, since I was in high school!)
- Yes to Cucumbers Daily Calming Moisturizer SPF 30
- DDF Ultra-Lite Oil-Free Moisturizing Dew SPF 15
Avoid hot showers.
How good does a hot shower feel on a freezing cold day? Sadly, long, hot showers contribute to dry, flaky skin, especially in the winter. (But it’s also true all year long.)
One way to know if your shower is too hot is to check your skin after you get out. If it’s red, the temperature is too high! If you’re darker skinned (like moi), then checking for redness may not work. Instead, get proactive by testing the water temp with your elbow prior to hopping in the shower. Since your elbow is more sensitive than other parts of your body, it can give you a more accurate read regarding whether the water is too hot.
Cover up when going out.
It can be challenging to remember to bundle up before going outside, especially if your mornings are anything like mine (a giant whirlwind of activity as you desperately try to get everything done before running out the door so you aren’t late). However, it’s so important to wear gloves/mittens and scarves before you brave the cold. Exposing your skin to the elements can lead to damaged (and painful) skin. Bundle up!
Use a humidifier.
Heating your home can remove moisture from the air. This, in turn, leads to dry skin. Counter this by getting a humidifier for your home (or office!). Doing so will help add moisture to the air around you, which in turn can keep your skin from getting dry.
What other tips do you have for having great skin in the winter?