Beauty takes a beating during the winter months. Extreme cold saps the moisture from the air and sucks the life out of skin, leaving behind hair that is frizzy and full of electricity and dry, flaking skin. Ongoing harsh conditions create red and irritated skin conditions, including eczema, psoriasis and extreme dry skin (xerosis). Skin care routines need to be adjusted for weather, just like we add sweater layers and puffy coats to keep warm.
Here are the steps to take.
- DRINK LOTS OF WATER. In extreme winter conditions, dehydration is quick. Hydration is key, and only drinking water will hydrate your skin.
- SET UP A HUMIDIFIER. One of the first things that happen during cold weather is that heaters switch on. The air gets dryer, not only outside but inside.
- WATCH THE HOT SHOWERS. They can warm us up on a cold day, but they also sap the moisture from skin. Dilating the capillaries of the skin increases redness. Keep showers lukewarm and brief.
- SWITCH TO OIL-BASED MOISTURIZERS and cleansers and stop using chemical- and petroleum-based products that strip skin. When it comes to therapeutic ingredients, think “higher,” not “heavier.”
- ROUTINE WILL SAVE YOU. Hydrate by the clock, drinking water and moisturizing on a schedule. Why? If you get behind, and your skin starts to dry out, it is hard to catch up. Prevention, prevention, prevention.
- CHOOSE HYDRATING and omega-rich foods that feed the body and the skin. Watch the caffeine and dehydrating foods and drinks, like coffee and alcohol.
- BEWARE OF EXFOLIATION products and scrubs. These can make the situation worse and leave your skin more fragile and vulnerable. Save them for when the weather warms up.These steps will help keep you beauty-ready through periods of extreme cold and dry weather, assisting you in banishing dry, dull, flaky and irritated skin during the winter.
Rebekah Kelley is the founder of Virtue Skinfood, a wholistic luxury skin care line. Visit her on the web at virtueskinfood.com.