Winter is one of the most enjoyable seasons. The extreme winter weather is a lot of fun, as there will be sledding, Christmas, snowball fights, and sipping hot chocolate next to the fire on a snowy day. That same extreme weather that brings so much fun is terrible for your skin, though. It wreaks havoc with the skin on your body and especially the skin on your face.
One of the most uncomfortable sensations is itchy, rough skin that’s so dry it’s white, and touching your face only to feel flaky and irritated skin. When winter comes, and the weather starts to turn bitterly cold and very dry, look at it as a sign to change and upgrade your typical skincare routine.
For expert skincare tips and advice, check out blog.reneerouleau.com and get some beauty inspiration, browse the newest products, learn proper skincare techniques, and answer any questions you may have about how to keep your skin soft, smooth, and healthy. For now, here are some expert tips on how to augment your daily skincare routine to combat the harsh effects of the cold winter air.
Winter Doesn’t Have to Equal Dry Skin
Cold weather can bring out the worst in your skin, and the lightweight moisturizers and matte primers that worked so well in the summer need to go back in the drawer when winter comes around. Even when you’re not outdoors, your skin rapidly loses the little hydration it does manage to retain from the effects of indoor heat, which sucks the moisture right out of your skin. However, by giving your skin a little more TLC and tweaking your daily beauty routine, you will stay protected and have silky soft skin even through biting winds and on icy cold days.
Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize!
Though it may seem obvious, the most critical part of taking care of your skin in winter is moisturizing! However, not just any moisturizer will do. Look for one that is cream-based rather than lotion-based. Not only are cream-based products more effective, but they make your skin feel smoother and help keep it hydrated.
The ideal application time for moisturizing cream is right after a shower. Apply it liberally when your skin is still a little wet to seal in all that extra moisture, which keeps your skin fully nourished throughout the day. If your favorite moisturizing cream is unscented, try mixing in a few drops of your favorite essential oils to create your own signature fragrance.
Use a Gentle Cleanser
Your skin will become dehydrated quickly if you aren’t using the right type of facewash. Forget bar soap—it leaves a residue and can dry your skin even faster than the cold winter air. Any cleanser for sensitive skin should generally be okay, but make sure you choose one that’s labeled fragrance-free because the products that say “unscented” can contain harsh masking agents to cover up the smell of chemicals or the active ingredients.
You should be paying close attention to the ingredients in your daily cleanser! According to the American Academy of Dermatology, using facewash that doesn’t contain alcohol or fragrance the best choice. The options with alcohol or strong scents will strip away your natural oils, which isn’t good, especially for those with extra sensitive skin.
Skip the Blazing Hot Showers
Taking extra-long and super-hot showers may feel amazing, but the high temperatures can dry your skin out very quickly. The ideal shower is about five to ten minutes with a lukewarm water temperature. The same advice goes for washing your hands, too. If you’re using water turned up so hot that your skin becomes red, it’s too hot. You might want to take a luxuriously hot shower, especially after a long and cold day, but keep the temperature warm and your skin will thank you for it!
Switch Up Your Acne Regimen
Since acne is caused by excess oil, dirt, and sebum that gets trapped under the skin, the most common acne treatments work by drying out your skin. This is something to avoid in winter months, especially the treatment products containing salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide, both of which can cause dry, peeling, and flaky skin. Instead, look for a gentle acne cleanser and a light facial moisturizer or gel that’s noncomedogenic, which means it won’t clog pores or cause breakouts. Always moisturize after cleansing and spot-treat any blemishes you may have with a topical acne medication.
Exfoliate Twice a Week
It’s not a trick of the light, your skin can become duller and less radiant in the wintertime. A great way to combat dull skin is by exfoliating twice a week. When you feel how soft and smooth it makes your skin, you might want to exfoliate every day, but don’t give in to the temptation. Exfoliating can scrub away the top layer of skin if you do it too frequently. Choose one that’s gentle, with no salt that could potentially irritate your skin, and pay extra special attention to rough spots like knees and elbows.
Another spot that people often forget to exfoliate is their lips. Your lips need just as much attention as your other skin does during winter and, ideally, should be exfoliated once a week. The best way to accomplish that is by gently scrubbing a dry toothbrush on your lips to scrape away any dead skin. Make sure you apply a lip balm with SPF protection when finished with exfoliating because you can still get a sunburn in winter.
Pay Extra Special Attention to Your Skin in Winter to Keep it Nourished and Hydrated
All the best parts of winter can be very rough on your skin: sledding, snowball fights, even sitting in front of a blazing fireplace will dry your skin out. Nothing feels worse than rough, peeling skin, which lowers your self-confidence. However, by giving your skin some extra TLC in the winter and changing up your daily beauty regimen, you can have gorgeous, glowing, and healthy skin.
Use extra gentle cleansers with no heavy fragrances and no alcohol, and skip out on using regular bar soap entirely to help keep your skin nourished and full of moisture. Exfoliate twice a week to slough off dead skin cells and reveal the glowing layer of healthy skin underneath. Replace the long, hot showers with shorter, lukewarm showers, and as soon as you’re almost dry, seal in the extra water on your skin with a cream-based moisturizer. With these expert tips, your skin will always be beautiful and glowing, no matter how cold it is outside.