Skin Care is doubly essential in winter as our skin isn’t made for the Winter weather. Cold weather and low humidity result in dry air, which then robs the skin off vital moisture every second of the cold winter months. We have to fight it!
This time of the year, when there is a nip in the air is one of the best to roost at home, after the celebrations. But the food and climate can play havoc with your skin, leading to dry, flaky skin and chapped lips, if adequate skin care is not taken. When skin is dehydrated, it droops and sags, looks older, and wrinkles are more pronounced. Nobody wants old-looking skin on a young body.
If your skin is dry & itchy, it is the body’s way of sending an SOS signal―and it’s not just a matter of comfort. To keep skin moisturized is not a matter of just looking good, a well-moisturized skin also acts as a barrier that keeps out infectious bacteria, viruses, and fungi, and it protects against friction.
The natural moisturizing of the skin is done by the oil glands that are just under the peripheral layer of the skin. Depending on the distribution and concentration of oil glands in our body, some parts of the body are more affected and prone to dryness than others. Oil glands are highly concentrated on the face, especially around the forehead and the nose, the chest, and the back, which all tend to have little trouble with dryness.
The skin on the lower legs & feet has very few oil glands, which is why they dry out so easily.
Lips have no oil glands connected, and unlike the skin on the rest of the body, lip tissues have no thick, protective outer layer, either. Our lips are constantly moisturized by saliva, then dried by breathing, which has an evaporative effect. Evaporation also dries out the moisture in our hands and feet. The thicker skin on elbows and knees has trouble retaining water, and its constant exposure to friction is also drying.
Our skin isn’t made for the Winter weather. Cold weather and low humidity result in dry air, which then robs the skin off vital moisture every second of the cold winter months. Without immediate skin care, the situation could worsen – dry skin can lead to cracking and bleeding. Indoor heat further robs the air of moisture, as do hot showers or baths and harsh cleansers.
Applying over the counter bought moisturizer helps, but you need to do more to actually counteract these effects and keep skin looking youthful and smooth. To reduce chapping, redness, itching, and keep skin more healthy and comfortable this season, try these tips.
How to Winter-proof Your Skin Care
In the winter, you will have to make alterations to your daily skin-care routine and some other daily habits to ward off skin dryness. Drinking plenty of water isn’t enough by itself. If you are well hydrated, the skin will sure look healthier, but it does not make a difference to the outer layers of the skin.
Cleanse your face just once a day―at night, to remove dirt, impurities, and makeup―and simple, soap-less rinse in the morning. Alcohol which is an additive in winter creams also dries the skin a few hours after application; so during the cold months, shelve products with high levels of alcohol, such as facial toners and astringents. But you need to exfoliate your face and body once a week with a gentle homemade natural scrub or a washcloth.
Replace hot water with lukewarm showers and limit them to five minutes or even less. Hot water, soap, and scrubbing might end up removing natural oils from your skin during bathing. Once you wash yourself, replenish the moisture that gets removed from your skin. Don’t wait until your skin and lips are dry before moisturizing. Some over-the-counter moisturizers have petroleum-based ingredients that can actually further dry your skin in the winter months. Be sure to choose a smart formula that has natural, nourishing ingredients. Go for an oil-based rather than a water-based solution, as it’s more likely to help your skin retain moisture in the winter.
Your hair starts to find it harder to retain moisture, making it brittle and prone to breaking and damage, not to mention the frizz and static that often comes with your winter wardrobe. Your scalp is drier and itchier than ever during the winter months because of the lack of moisture in the air. This leads to issues like dandruff and aggravated scalp irritation, which can lead to hair fall. What most people don’t realize is that the dandruff problem can be super manageable with the right skin care. All you will need is a couple of tablespoons of olive or coconut oil and a teaspoon of lemon juice. Heat the oil for a couple of seconds until it is warm and then mix it with the lemon juice. Massage the oil into your scalp and leave it in for 20-30 minutes. Rinse it out with shampoo and condition.
Indoor heating systems blow out dry air; so consider installing a humidifier in your home, particularly in your bedroom, to put moisture back into the air and help prevent your skin from drying out. Also, don’t forget to cover up before heading outside. Leather gloves keep hands from chapping as leather provides a better barrier to moisture evaporation than cotton. Wax-based products like lipstick and lip balm provide moisture and wind protection.
Choose foods high in water content so that it can help hydrate your skin from the inside out. Try cantaloupe, apples, oranges, kiwi, and watery veggies like celery, tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, and carrots. Additionally, increase your intake of vitamin C and zinc to support the healthy production of collagen and elastin.
For the face, a Homemade hydrating masks can provide the required moisture in the winter months. Choose brands that contain natural moisturizing bases like honey, avocado, yogurt, olive and jojoba oils, almond oil, bananas, and aloe. Mix the chosen ingredients to create a cream or paste, and leave on skin for 10-30 minutes for lasting hydration.