Have you ever noticed that your skin is much more dewy and youthful looking in the warmer months? Whipping winds and below-freezing temperatures can really do a number on your epidermal layers.
Cracked, scaly skin is more the norm in the winter, but this doesn’t have to be the case. With these five simple tips, you can keep your skin healthy, hydrated and glowing until it’s time for that natural beachy glow to set in.
Use a humidifier
The outdoor air is dryer in the winter and most home heating systems bring some of that air indoors, drying out your home, sinuses and skin. But with a small investment in a home humidifier, you can add moisture back into your home environment and keep your skin looking dewy fresh. If you typically get patches of dry skin in the winter months, a humidifier should help.
Don’t forget about SPF
Everyone knows that they should protect their skin in the hot summer months, but too many people forget to slather on the sunscreen in the winter. This is especially important when you’ll be spending time in the snow. Ice and snow reflect up to 80% of UV radiation, which means you’re getting almost double the UV exposure (directly from the sun and from the snow). Use the same SPF you would use in summer months to protect your skin from winter sun damage.
In rough winter conditions, your skin cells lose moisture and die out faster than they do in the summer. This contributes to a duller looking appearance, but this one is an easy fix. With an exfoliating cleanser, you can slough of the dead cells and make room for new skin to shine. As a bonus, the new skin cells are better at absorbing moisture, so any moisturizers you use will be more effective. It’s fine to use a light exfoliator daily, but if you have something that goes a bit deeper, you may want to limit use to one or two times weekly.
Use lip balm daily
When you’re taking better care of your skin for the winter, do not forget about the delicate skin on your lips. If you do, you’ll be rewarded with painfully cracked lips that don’t heal quickly. It’s always easier to prevent chapped lips than it is to treat them. All you need is a good lip balm, preferably with an SPF.
Drink lots of water
You may not be sweating as much in the winter months, but you could be losing nearly as much water. Brisk air and home heating tend to pull moisture from our skin. Replenish from the inside out by drinking at least the recommended amount of water each day. If you’re not sure what this is for you, start with 8 8-ounce glasses. This will help keep your skin hydrated, so you don’t have to be so dependent on hand and body moisturizers.
By taking measures to protect your skin from harsh environments, you are taking a proactive approach to skincare. It’s about time we start looking deeper into caring for our skin. It is the largest organ in our bodies, after all.