If you’re like me, your skin takes a beating during the winter months, especially if you’re living in climates with low winter temperatures and harsher conditions.
The cold air outside and the dry heat inside can leave your skin feeling tired, dull, and parched.
But there’s no reason to despair!
With a little extra care, you can pamper your skin and give it the TLC it needs to stay hydrated and vibrant all season long.
Here are our top tips for keeping your winter skin looking its best.
1. Exfoliate your skin regularly
Regular exfoliation is important for keeping your skin looking its best.
Dead skin cells can build up on the surface of your skin, leading to a dull complexion and clogged pores.
Exfoliating helps to remove these dead skin cells, revealing the brighter, smoother skin underneath.
Exfoliation can also help to improve the efficacy of your other skincare products by clearing away any barriers that might prevent them from penetrating the skin.
There are a variety of ways to exfoliate your skin, including scrubs, peels, and masks.
Choose an exfoliator that is appropriate for your skin type, as some ingredients, like fragrances, alcohol, fruit acids, and certain ingredients can be too harsh, or detrimental to your skin health.
Used once a week, gentle exfoliation can help you achieve and maintain clear, radiant skin.
2. Use a hydrating moisturizer
Winter weather can wreak havoc on your skin, leaving it feeling dry, tight, and flaky.
One of the best ways to combat dry winter skin is to use a hydrating moisturizer.
A hydrating moisturizer helps to replenish the skin’s natural moisture barrier, locking in hydration and protecting against further moisture loss.
Look for a moisturizer that contains ingredients like hyaluronic acid or glycerin, which are known for their ability to attract and retain moisture.
Apply your hydrating after cleansing while your skin is still damp, for best results. Gently massage it into your skin using upward strokes until it is fully absorbed.
Use a hydrating moisturizer twice daily to help keep your skin soft, smooth, and supple all winter long.
3. Apply lip balm every morning and every night
Applying lip balm daily can be an important part of a self-care routine, especially in the winter months.
It helps to keep lips moisturized and prevents them from becoming dry and chapped.
An SPF lip balm with shea butter can moisturize the lips, shield them from the elements and reduce the risk of sun damage.
When we sleep, we’re breathing and drying out our lips throughout the night, so using a lip balm before bedtime reduces dryness, and helps give lips a chance to heal and repair any damage that may have been done during the day.
Be careful not to overapply.
Only use lips balm as part of your morning and nighttime skincare routine and after meals.
4. Avoid hot showers and baths
Many of us enjoy a hot shower or bath to relax after a long day.
However, what we may not realize is that this habit can actually be damaging to our skin. When exposed to hot water, our skin becomes stripped of its natural oils.
This can lead to dryness, irritation, and even breakouts. In addition, hot water can cause the capillaries in our skin to expand, leading to redness and blotchiness.
In some cases, it can aggravate skin conditions like rosacea and eczema.
So next time you step in the bath or shower, remember that it’s best to stick to a shorter wash and to use a lukewarm temperature.
5. Wear sunscreen whenever you’re inside, even in winter
Many people think that they only need to worry about wearing sunscreen when they’re outdoors in direct sunlight.
However, it’s just as important to wear sunscreen indoors, especially during the winter months. The sun’s rays can penetrate glass, and even though you’re not in direct sunlight, you’re still exposed to harmful UV rays.
In fact, you may be more susceptible to sun damage indoors because you’re unaware of the dangers.
It only takes a few seconds to apply, it can be applied as part of your regular daily skincare routine, and it could save your skin from damage in the long run.
Winter Body Care
6. Drink plenty of water
It’s important to keep your skin hydrated all year round, but it’s especially important in winter.
The colder, drier air can sap moisture from your skin, leaving it feeling parched, tight, itchy, or irritated.
One of the best ways to combat this is to drink plenty of water. It helps to keep your skin cells plump and hydrated and resultantly, keeps your skin hydrated.
If you’re struggling to drink enough water, try carrying a water bottle with you everywhere you go or set reminders on your phone to drink up throughout the day.
7. Eat healthy foods that are good for your skin
Did you know that the food you eat can have an impact on your skin?
That’s right, the things you put into your body can affect the health and appearance of your skin.
For healthy, glowing skin, it’s important to eat foods that are good for your skin, including fruits and vegetables, proteins, and healthy fats.
Web MD notes that foods that are particularly beneficial to your skin include:
- Vitamins A, C, and E
These will be most commonly found in fish, dark leafy greens, eggs, beans and lentils, avocados, and extra virgin olive oil.
8. Avoid using harsh ingredients on your skin
Many laundry products such as scent beads, bleach, detergents, and dryer sheets contain ingredients that may irritate your skin.
Likewise, many cleaning products can also be rough on your hands and even age them prematurely with prolonged, regular use.
To avoid irritation and dried-out skin, wear protective gloves when cleaning and look for laundry products that are labeled as “hypoallergenic” or “fragrance-free.”
Or, opt for natural laundry soap options, which are usually made with gentler ingredients.
Natural cleaning products are usually made with non-toxic ingredients and you can even make your own cleaning solutions by using simple household ingredients like vinegar and water.
Keeping Your Outdoor Care Optimal for Winter Health
9. Wear sunscreen – even when it’s cloudy outside
According to the Kelowna Skin Cancer Clinic, sunscreen should be worn every day, regardless of the season.
Although the sun’s rays may feel less potent in winter, they can still cause damage to your skin. In fact, snow reflects up to 80% of the sun’s UV rays, which can even increase your risk of sunburn.
And while you may not spend as much time outdoors in winter as you do in summer, you’re still exposed to UV rays when it’s cold and cloudy.
Choose a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 and apply it generously to all exposed skin.
10. Bundle up
When the temperature drops, it’s important to take steps to keep your body temperature regulated by bundling up with warm clothes, hats, scarves, gloves, etc.
There is less moisture in colder air and this can leave your skin and hair feeling dry and “thirsty” so by keeping your head and face covered, you can help to lock in moisture and protect your skin and hair from the crisp air.
Next time the temperature dips, be sure to bundle up.
11. Avoid going outside when the wind chill factor is high
When the temperature outside drops it is also important to be aware of the wind chill factor, as this can have a significant impact on our skin.
The wind chill is the feeling of coldness that we experience when the wind blows onto our skin. The faster the wind speed, the greater the wind chill effect.
If the wind chill factor is high enough, it can quickly cause frostbite, which is when the skin and tissues freeze.
Frostbite typically affects exposed areas of skin, such as the nose, ears, and cheeks. In severe cases, it can even lead to amputation.
To avoid frostbite, it’s essential to limit exposure to severely cold weather and wear appropriate clothing if you must go outside.
12. Take indoor breaks to warm up
If you’re going to be outside for a long period of time in cold weather, either working or enjoying winter sports, remember to take breaks indoors to warm up.
Prolonged exposure to the cold can cause damage to your skin, so it’s important to take care of your skin in the winter and follow the same steps above, in tips #10 and #11, for maximum protection.
Keeping Your Indoor Environment Optimal For Winter Health
13. Use a humidifier in your home to add moisture to the air
In the winter, the air inside our homes can also become quite dry, leading to a number of uncomfortable problems.
Static electricity becomes more common, for example, and we all know how frustrating dealing with that can be!
A humidifier can help to alleviate these issues by adding moisture to the air. By raising the humidity level, a humidifier can make the air feel warmer and prevent static electricity from building up.
In addition, humidified air can help to keep skin and sinuses hydrated, making it an ideal solution for those suffering from dryness or allergies.
For other great tips on your home’s environment, see 11 Best Water features for a Calming Space.
And that is it, folks!
I hope you enjoyed the tips for pampering your winter skin and speaking of static- here are some further ways to reduce this pesky winter woe.
Tips for Reducing Static
Static occurs when the electrical charges in your body become imbalanced. This is more common in winter because of the dry air.
There are a few ways to reduce static on your skin. Some of these we have already seen in the above tips, such as:
- Drink plenty of water to keep your skin hydrated
- Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air
- Apply lotion to your skin regularly
But in addition to those you can also:
- Avoid wearing synthetic fabrics, which can increase static electricity, and opt for natural fibers like cotton.
- If you do experience static shocks, try rubbing yourself down with a dryer sheet
- Add vinegar to the rinse cycle
- Line dry clothing indoors (also smells great and increases humidity levels)
- Use dryer sheets, a wool ball, or an aluminum foil ball in your dryer
While winter can be a wonderful time of year, it does come with its share of challenges, such as uncomfortably cold weather, dry skin, and static cling.
Luckily, there are simple steps we can take to reduce these issues and enjoy the season in comfort.
Whether you use a humidifier to keep the air moisturized, apply lotion regularly to keep your skin hydrated, bundle up when outside, or drink and eat well, there are many ways to stay healthy and comfortable all winter long.