16 Tips For Looking After Your Skin In Winter
Is your skin suddenly feeling tight and irritated? As winter approaches, the colder air, harsh winds, and dry indoor air can wreak havoc on the skin, leaving it flaky and dehydrated.
Fortunately, a few easy adjustments to your skincare routine can help keep your skin supple and healthy all winter long.
The Best Winter Skin Care Tips
The key to caring for skin during winter is preventing transepidermal water loss. This helps keep skin healthy and hydrated rather than irritated and dry.
Try these 16 easy tips to keep your skin moisturized and glowy even on the coldest days.
1. Apply Sunscreen Every Day
Applying sunscreen — even on cold, cloudy, winter days — is number one on our list for a reason. Many people assume colder, darker weather means the sunscreen can be skipped. No way!
On bright winter days, the snow can reflect up to 80 per cent of harmful UV rays. And these harmful UV rays can still penetrate clouds on dreary, dark days. That means applying sunscreen is just as important in winter as it is in summer.
So whether you are playing in the snow, snowshoeing, or on the slopes, make sure to use a moisturizing, broad-spectrum sunscreen of at least SPF 15 to keep your skin protected against photodamage.
2. Use A Hydrating Cleanser
Stripping the skin with harsh cleansers is a bad idea any time of year, but especially during winter. Harsh cleansers can compromise the skin’s barrier, leaving it dry, tight, flaky, and susceptible to damage.
Instead, reach for a hydrating cleanser that nourishes and balances the skin as it cleans. Bonus points: use a cleanser with antioxidants to give skin an even better defence against the harsh winter air.
You may want to consider switching to a hydrating body wash as well.
3. Use A Humidifier In Your Bedroom
A humidifier can add additional moisture to your bedroom. This can help to keep your skin hydrated by preventing moisture from getting sucked out of your skin.
4. Add Moisture BEFORE You Shower
Hot steamy showers can lead to dried-out skin and lead to moisture loss since they rinse away the skin’s natural oils. To seal in your skin’s natural moisture, apply a thin layer of rich hydrating body cream to your hands, arms, face, and legs before stepping into the shower.
5. Limit Shower Temperature and Time
Long, steamy showers or baths can be tempting in winter, but your skin will thank you if you stick to lukewarm temps and limit your time in the water to about 5 to 10 minutes.
When washing your hands, try to avoid excessively hot temperatures as well. As a general rule, water that turns your skin red is too hot.
You may think ‘the hotter, the better for killing germs, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that warm water was just as effective in removing germs as hot water. If you are using an air-dryer in a restroom to dry your hands, use it until your hands are still slightly damp rather than completely dry.
6. Add More Moisture Immediately After Showering or Bathing
Applying lotion while your skin is still slightly damp after a shower or bath is a great way to enhance your lotion’s effectiveness and seal in moisture.
7. Remember Your Feet
When applying lotion, many people remember their arms and legs but don’t forget your feet. Add a few pumps of rich lotion to your feet and give yourself a foot massage.
8. Stay Hydrated From The Inside Out
It is easy to remember to drink enough water when the sun is out and temps are high. But a tall glass of water is just as crucial on a cold winter day as it is during summer.
Increasing your water intake can help hydrate your skin from the inside out.
9. Switch To A Heavy Duty Facial Moisturizer
Moisturizing your facial skin during winter is crucial to maintaining glowy, supple, healthy-looking skin. Look for a paraben-free moisturizer with peptides, rich hydration, and antioxidants.
10. Do An Intensive Overnight Moisture Treatment
Consider using a rich body cream as a deep overnight moisture treatment. This is especially effective for areas that tend to get dry such as the knees, elbows, hands, and feet. Cover up with socks or cotton gloves to seal in moisture overnight and wake up to deeply nourished and moisturized skin.
11. Lower the Thermostat to Avoid Dryness
If the wind is howling and the temperatures are low, it can be tempting to crank up your thermostat. This approach may feel great, but it can backfire.
Central heat further dries out the air in your home, leaving you even more susceptible to dry skin. Instead, aim for a comfortable setting — 68°F to 72°F — between that isn’t overly hot.
12. Modify Your Facial Skin-Care Regimen for the Season
During the winter months, you may want to make the following changes to your skincare regime:
- If using a toner, make sure it is specifically labelled “hydrating”
- Avoid products that contain alcohol
- Skip products that contain artificial fragrances
- Use a moisturizing balm on your lips to prevent them from getting chapped
13. Moisturize Every Time You Wash Your Hands
Winter months often mean more frequent hand washing. Constantly washing hands can leave them parched, tight, and even cracked. Apply a creamy hand lotion every time you wash your hands to help prevent cracked, sore hands.
To further protect your hands, use waterproof gloves when cleaning or doing dishes.
14. Wear Appropriate, Comfortable, Non-Irritating Clothing
Certain cold-weather fabrics, such as wool, can irritate dry winter skin. Avoid letting rough clothing or wool directly touch your skin.
Rather, choose lightweight layers made from breathable, soft materials. These layers can be used directly against your skin for extra warmth and to prevent warmer, heavier layers from directly touching your skin.
Use mittens or gloves to protect your hands against dry winter air. If using wood mittens, consider putting them over silk or cotton glove liners to prevent irritation.
15. Nourish Skin From Within
Taking care of the skin during winter — and throughout the year — isn’t just about what products you use. Eating foods rich in antioxidants, collagen, and omega 3 fatty acids can help nourish skin with the nutrients it needs to stay healthy.
16. Change Out of Wet Clothes Quickly to Avoid Itchy Skin
If you come in from a snowball fight, skiing, snowshoeing, or just running errands, you can end up with wet socks, gloves, and pants if it is snowing or slushy out. Change out of wet clothing items immediately to prevent skin irritation.
Custom Skincare Advice and Recommendations For Protecting Your Skin During Winter
Harsh winds, cold temps, and dry indoor air can be a recipe for disaster for your skin during the winter months. Try using the tips above and adjusting your skincare routine to help combat the effects of winter and keep your skin healthy throughout the season.
If you are unsure of which skincare products are best suited to your skin type or climate, please feel free to reach out to our team of experts for custom skincare recommendations. We’d be happy to help you find the best products that will help get you glowing.