Those of us who live in parts of the world where winter means baby, it’s cold outside, know that our skin needs extra care to combat the drying indoor heat and lack of moisture in the air during these frigid months. And here are some things you can do to pamper yourself and keep your skin soft and supple all winter long.
• Getting a facial can be just the thing to bring life back to your skin in the dead of winter. Inner Vitality Spa, in Newton, PA, specializes in facials and features a Winter Facial Special: Pure Bliss—Massage and Facial Combo, $149, is 50 minutes of therapeutic massage coupled with the 50-minute Organic Facial, which incorporates organic, hand-selected products imported from Hungary. All ingredients are customized to each guest’s skin type. www.innervitalityspa.com; 215.968.9000
• Exfoliate face, hands, and feet once a week to remove dead skin cells and allow moisturizer to penetrate more quickly and more deeply. Treat yourself to an exfoliating body scrub, like the one at Eshe Day Spa and Salon, in Chicago: The Body Polish, $55, is 50 minutes of exfoliation and refinement of the skin utilizing the therapeutic benefits of marine elements such as natural minerals and Dead Sea salts, along with other skin-conditioning ingredients, leaving renewed and radiant skin. www.eshedayspa.com, 312.629.0376
• Work from the inside out. Drink lots of water. Because alcohol is dehydrating, consume it in moderation. Eat berries, rich in anti-oxidants; salmon, for its essential fatty acids; and low-fat yogurt, for a good dose of vitamin A, which is crucial for skin health.
• Tune up your moisturizing routine. Switch to oil-based moisturizer if you’re using one that’s water-based. And right out of the shower, slather on moisturizer rich in aloe, like Kiehl’s Deluxe Hand & Body Lotion with Aloe Vera & Oatmeal ($12.50 for 4.2 oz., www.kiehls.com).
• Cut out hot showers and hot baths, which can strip your skin of its natural oils—keep the water temperature at warm.
• Switch to milder soaps if you usually use antibacterial or deodorant soaps, to retain more of your skin’s natural oils. Try Dr. Bronner Organic Unscented Baby-Mild Soap. $3.79, www.vitaminshoppe.com
• Don’t put away the sunscreen just because it’s winter! Protect your skin from the winter sun—slather it on.
• Take it easy on the toners and astringent, especially if they are alcohol-based. Avoid them completely in the winter, if your skin isn’t too oily naturally.
• Switch from using face powder to just liquid foundation, one that’s oil-based.
• Bring a humidifier home to combat the drying effects of indoor heating.
Our hands can take the brunt of winter’s wrath. Here are three products for dry, cracked hands.
Mistral Verbena Hand Cream with Shea Butter
Shea butter and olive oil are two of the most effective hydrating ingredients because the skin can absorb them. (And shea butter has natural UV filters.) Both are in this verbena-scented cream made in Provence. The invigorating clean fragrance, with hints of mint, lime, marjoram and flowering jasmine, will make you think of summer. Available now in a larger size. $21 for 3.38 oz., www.mistralsoap.com
Pevonia Youth-Renew Myoxy-Caviar Hand & Foot Cream
This cream delivers the ultimate anti-aging formula by precisely blending caviar, marine collagen, retinol, and vitamins A and E within a natural healing base of shea butter. Treated hands unveil velvety smooth skin that’s deeply hydrated. Contains valuable UV protection. $42 for 1.7 oz., www.pevonia.com
Archipelago Botanicals Pomegranate Hand Crème
Hand creams need free-radical fighters just as much as face creams. That’s the thinking behind this skin quencher, which contains pomegranate, a grand dame of antioxidants. $25 for 4.8 oz., www.beautyexclusive.com