Between the dark, chilly mornings and the long, cold nights, winter can be a cruel season. It’s certainly no fun for your skin. Follow these skincare tips, and bring back the seasonal glow!
It may seem strange – after all, the sun’s not as harsh at this time of year – but winter is actually one of the toughest seasons when it comes to skincare. You’ll be bundled up, trying to keep warm, for the next few months, and as a result, your skin won’t get much of a chance to “breathe”.
The low temperatures, low humidity and dry air (pumped out by our trusty winter heaters) will do the rest. Your skin will get dry, it’ll get flaky, it’ll get damaged, and it’ll only get worse if you don’t take action.
The golden rule of winter skincare can be summed up in one simple word: moisturise.
Use oil-based, rather than water-based, moisturiser: it’ll create a protective layer on your skin, locking in its natural moisture. Keep your baths and showers short (no more than 15 minutes), and not too hot. Remember, water may be wet, but it’s not hydrating to your skin.
In fact, too much hot water will wash away your skin’s natural oils, leaving you dehydrated! When you get out of the bath/shower, don’t dry yourself completely. Pat yourself down, and then apply your moisturiser while your skin is still slightly damp.
Wear sunscreen – even if you haven’t actually seen the sun for a couple of days – and reapply it during the day. UV rays can also damage your skin’s outer barriers, sapping away moisture and leaving it dry and itchy.
And while your skin may be dry and flaky, don’t be tempted to exfoliate more than usual. Exfoliation will only strip down your skin’s protective layers, weakening it even further. Besides, your skin is exfoliating already (hence the flakiness). During winter, all skin types go through quicker-than-normal exfoliation cycles.
To make things worse, most of us wear woolly or synthetic fibres during the colder months, and when those rub up against dry skin, it makes your skin even itchier! Wear a soft cotton layer underneath to give your skin a break.