Winter is very a special time of year. From cosy knits and Christmas markets to streets covered with snow, the season is packed with festive charm. The frosty weather and shorter days also offer us valuable time to relax after the warmer months. But despite the delights of winter, colder temperatures combined and low humidity can often cause reak havoc with our skin. If you’ve ever experienced dry or sensitive skin, you know how irritating this can be.
To help you look after your skin through the winter months, we’ve compiled 5 simple ways to keep your skin hydrated and healthy. By taking heed of these beneficial tips, you can get to the root of your skin issues and glow year-round.
Avoid Hot Baths and Showers
Throughout winter, taking hot baths and showers can be a great way to warm up and before or after a long day. However, despite the temporary rest bite they provide, researchers have found that washing with excessively warm water can be a common source of dry and sensitive skin. This is because when hot water evaporates, it can create cracks in the surface of the skin. Moreover, other studies reveal that on top of drying out the skin, hot baths and showers also have the potential to damage the surface of the skin.
Therefore, to avoid dehydrating your skin, we recommend washing your body in lukewarm water. You don’t need to freeze yourself, lukewarm water is anything from 36.5 to 50.5 °C. Other ways to protect your skin include closing the doors when you’re bathing or showering to keep moisture in the air and patting, not rubbing your skin dry after you wash.
Exfoliating is the practice of scrubbing your skin to remove dry or dead skin cells. It’s a useful way to rid your skin of dirt and impurities, but if you exfoliate too frequently or with too much pressure, it can also exacerbate dryness and irritation. This is because when you over-exfoliate, you rub away healthy skin cells and lipids that keep your skin hydrated and healthy.
In addition to compromising your skins natural hydration, excessive exfoliation can also lead to inflammation, puffiness and redness in rarer cases. This is because when the exterior barrier of your skin is worn down, it makes you more susceptible to outer irritants. Accordingly, if you want to protect your natural moisture and reduce the risk of over-inflammation, it’s advised to exfoliate gently and only when you deem it absolutely necessary.
Use Thick Moisturiser
If you suffer from dry skin, you already understand the importance of a quality moisturiser. However, with the litany of products that are currently available on the market, it might be hard to determine which ones are the best for dry skin. If you’re serious about combatting dry skin, you should search for moisturisers with thick, nourishing formulas. Compared to thinner products, thick moisturisers are typically better at locking in moisture and soothing brittle or damaged skin.
While less viscous lotions can be a great option for the summer months when your skin is naturally more oily, they tend to be slightly less moisturising. Therefore, by choosing creams that come in jars over pumps, your skin has a better chance of staying rejuvenated through the winter months.
Use Natural Oils
Aside from moisturisers, natural oils can also be a great way to fight winter skin. Compared to artificial products that often are heavy in chemicals, natural oils are extracted straight from the plant itself. This means they contain a more concentrated version of the botanical ingredient. By choosing naturally moisturising oils like coconut, tea tree or argan oil, you can use the remedial compounds of the plants directly. The oils can be particularly effective at helping your body to retain moisture before or after washing, and they also help you to smell great in the process.
CBD, or cannabidiol, is another oil that has been lauded for its nourishing potential. Despite its relatively recent popularity, a number of studies have already pointed to its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antioxidant properties. These qualities make CBD oil particularly effective at addressing a variety of skincare issues, from dry skin to acne. So, if you suffer from seasonal dry skin in addition to other conditions like acne, this may be a good natural oil to add to your skincare regimen.
Eat the Right Foods
Ever heard of the old expression ‘you are what you eat’? It’s definitely true when it comes to skin health. While it’s no surprise that your diet can affect your physical and mental health and functioning, many people aren’t aware of the impact food can have on our skin, too. By selecting foods that are naturally rich in vitamin A, C, D, E and magnesium, your skin will be better at maintaining its protective function. Whatsmore, if you prioritise foods that are high in fats like walnuts, olive oil, avocado and salmon, your skin will have a greater chance of staying supple and hydrated through the colder months.
You should also bear in mind that while the right food has the potential to strengthen and replenish dry skin, others have the power to aggravate the issue further. For instance, diets that are high in alcohol and caffeine have been linked with dried out and sensitive skin because of their dehydrating properties. Therefore, if you want to solve winter skin from the inside out, it’s recommended that you consume these compounds in moderation.
As we’ve discussed, there’s no one way to tackle seasonal dryness and irritation. In fact, there are many various routes that lead to healthy and hydrated skin. By using a combination of these methods above, we’re sure you’ll be able to leave your dry skin behind and truly make the most of what this magical season has to offer.