5 Ways to Keep Skin Healthy and Hydrated in the Cooler Months
by Celeste Hilling, healthy skin care expert and CEO, Skin Authority
Frigid, dry air. Scratchy scarves. Overheated buildings. Reduced exposure to sunlight. No wonder your skin feels like the Sahara. With winter rolling in early this year in many parts of the country, effective hydration for your skin is a very real need.
In part one of my series on cold weather and skin, let’s dish on dryness and what you should do in order to face winter with a healthy, protected glow. When moving from heated homes to heated cars to heated office buildings, our skin experiences less than 4% humidity in artificially heated, recirculated air. When skin is denied moisture, two things occur: surface skin becomes dehydrated and chapped while beneath the surface, sebaceous glands compensate by producing more oil. The oil and debris become trapped in the dry surface layers. This can lead to breakouts and irritation.
To counteract this onset of winter skin blahs:
- Daily Cleansing: Avoid the temptation to take hot showers as the heat will further dehydrate skin. Keep temperatures lukewarm and exfoliate from head to toe to slough off dead skin cells. Use a cleanser with small, gentle micro-beads versus large scrubbing particles which can damage fragile skin. Apply a body moisturizer with anti-inflammatory ingredients (Shea Butter, Aloe, Olive Oil) as soon as you step out of the shower to seal in moisture.
- Exfoliation: Don’t be afraid to exfoliate your face. Regular facial exfoliation speeds up the cell turnover process, which allows the body to produce moisture-bearing properties like hyaluronic acid. Exfoliation also helps plump the skin by churning up elastin and collagen production. I recommend using a resurfacing agent like glycolic acid. Commonly derived from sugar cane, glycolic acid gently dissolves dead surface skin cells, instead of peeling or scrubbing, signaling the body to replace them with new, plump ones.
- Masks: Masks play an important role in restoring nutrients and protective antioxidants the help skin fight effects of overexposure to cold, dry winter air. Try applying a mask of eucalyptus, clay, and sulphur once a week to put nutrients and moisture back into your skin while fighting inflammation
- Protection: Snow or sun, don’t forget sunscreen! Apply a full spectrum, moisturizing sunscreen daily to all exposed skin, which often includes our faces, neck, ears, decolletage, hands, and forearms.
Vitamin D: Lack of sun exposure and shorter days lead to less Vitamin D production. Vitamin D is a key hormone needed for strong immune function. Apply a topical Vitamin D Serum daily under sunscreen to give the skin a daily dose of D.
About the author: With two decades in the beauty and skin care industries, Celeste Hilling is the Founder, CEO and Product Formulator for Skin Authority. Skin Authority is respected for developing pure and powerful products without the use of parabens, added fragrance, dyes or animal testing. More on www.skinauthority.com, Facebook at Skin Authority, Twitter @SkinAuthority and @MissSkin