Cold, snow, and the holidays; these are the things we love about winter. Sadly, the cold winter brings frigid air, which is bad for our skin. Dry, chapped skin is probably the worst thing about winter as far as our bodies are concerned. Low temperatures are the bane of healthy skin as it wastes no time in sucking all the moisture out of the epidermis, leaving behind a cracked, roughened exterior. But luckily, that doesn’t have to be the story of your skin. Check out these three tips on keeping your skin healthy during the winter!
Hoard your body moisture
Skin gets chapped in the winter because cold, dry air tends to draw moisture to itself, dispelling it into the atmosphere. Since moisture is responsible for keeping skin soft, skin gets drier the more it is exposed to cold air. Hoarding your body moisture is important to keep your skin soft and crack-free. The environment has enough moisture as it is. 😃
These suggestions will keep you maintain as much moisture as possible:
Wear proper clothing: Head warmers and mufflers are not just fashion icons in the winter. Up to 70% of body heat is lost through the head and neck, and moisture along with it, research shows. Hoard your body moisture by investing in a nice, thick head warmer and muffler to match (fashion is important too)!
Use high-quality moisturizer: If your goal is to keep your skin saturated with water, then it only makes sense to moisturize. Be sure to get a moisturizer that contains natural ingredients like red marine algae, vitamin A, and vitamin E. Apply immediately after bathing, cover the more exposed areas of your body (face and hands) first, and then work your way through the rest of your body.
Get room humidifier: Moisture generated by humidifiers counters the dry winter air and keeps your home atmosphere saturated, skin-friendly, and safe from the elements.
Use sunscreen daily: Sunscreen is not just for summer weather, as its primary function is to offer protection from harsh ultraviolet rays. Research shows that snow can actually reflect and amplify UV rays. Apply a nice, light layer of sunscreen to shield your skin.
Protect your skin
Moisture loss is not the only thing to watch out for when caring for your skin in the winter. Here are some instigators and tricks on how to deal with them.
Exfoliate dry skin: At first glance exfoliating might sound counterproductive since you’re trying to keep your skin moist, not shed it. But exfoliating is good for you because it peels off the dead (often dry) skin, and replaces it with soft, well-vascularized skin cells. In choosing an exfoliant, look for ones that contain natural, organic ingredients as they are the best for the skin.
Apply vaseline: That’s right, vaseline. Vaseline is usually made from petroleum jelly and has high oil content, making it perfect for the winter. Applying an appropriately thick layer of vaseline helps to keep your skin insulated and well-moisturized. During application, aim for the most exposed parts of your body like your face and hands. Your skin will thank you!
Quality soap/cleanser: Many popular soaps and skin cleansers actually contain harsh and sometimes harmful synthetic chemicals that can damage the skin. A safe bet is to go for fragrance-free and high-quality ingredient based brands.
Keep your body healthy
The skin is an organ of the body, and all the moisture and skin care in the world is not going to compensate for poorly-managed health. Here are some pointers to keep in mind when maintaining a healthy body in the winter:
- Eat the right diet: From staying in shape to getting more productive, a healthy diet is pretty important, and skin care is no different. A diet with the right amounts of fat and oil is just what your body needs in the winter. Cold seasons prompt the body to deposit fat to cope with the harsh weather, and the right diet can help this process along nicely.
- Take short showers: Your natural inclination may be to take a nice, long warm shower in the winter, but it’s actually doing you more harm than good. Excessively long showers diminish the natural oily layer on the skin, and exposes it to lose moisture. Also, the quick transition from hot to cold can cause your skin to crack. Instead, take short showers with lukewarm water. We know… not too fun, but quite helpful!
- Drink plenty water: Moisture lost through the skin not only makes it crack, but also depletes the body’s reserves and can leave you dehydrated. Unfortunately, most people don’t think of dehydration in the winter since it’s so cold. Don’t fall victim to this. Be sure to drink lots of water throughout the winter.
Hopefully, reading this has armed you to keep your skin beautiful and radiant in the chilling, dry winter air.
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