Let’s get ready for winter, shall we?
To maintain youthful, radiant skin that is impervious to winter’s ills, skin care products must hydrate, preserve, replace and seal in existing moisture and add much needed lipids to help protect skin against winter’s harsh conditions. Choose products with natural plant oils like squalane, safflower oil and shea butter to lock moisture in. Natural humectants like plant-based glycerin, hyaluronic acid (sodium hyaluronate), sorbitol, lactic acid and sodium PCA attract and hold water in the outermost layers of the skin, protecting the skin’s barrier
Vitamins A, B, C and E are also recommended to help keep skin hydrated year round. Vitamins A, C and E are vital as dehydrated winter skin is particularly vulnerable to damaging free radicals. Fat soluble Vitamins A, C and E trigger production of the skin’s own hydrating factors while Vitamin C is particularly helpful, since it boosts collagen production which keeps skin plump and smooth. Vitamin B3 prevents water loss, and Vitamin B5 is a humectant that heals.
Starting a regimen with a mild, sulfate-free cleanser is an essential first step for winter-proofing skin. Did you know sodium laurel or sodium laureth sulfate strip the skin of vital moisture and break down the protective barrier? This causes dryness, irritation and inflammation, and leads to premature aging. Winter is an opportune time to try a creamy cleanser. If you still crave bubbles, use a foaming cleanser at night to remove makeup and introduce a creamy, water-soluble version in the morning to refresh your skin. Remember to use lukewarm or tepid water, only. Next, swipe the skin with an alcohol-free toner to complete the cleansing process and remove irritating and drying tap water. For an added bonus, spritz the face, neck and décolleté before applying moisturizer to replenish lost moisture.
Infuse skin with hydration by using a serum, followed by a moisturizer to seal it in. This makes for a complete winter-busting skincare solution. If you have been skipping serums, now is the time to start. Also, you may want to try a richer moisturizer this time of year to battle severe dryness. But, stay clear of mineral oil, which only gives the illusion of moisturizing. Remember: Moisture keeps the skin barrier supple and intact, preventing free radicals from getting in. Being consistent with these four steps is a must for those wanting to look their best for holiday parties and well into the New Year.
Did you know? In the winter, blood flow is diverted to the core to keep the body warm. Because of this, skin may suffer from this lack of regular circulation. Exfoliating removes dead skin cells, plus stimulates cellular turnover and circulation to bring back that vibrant glow. As a bonus, it also allows serums and moisturizers to perform better.
Don’t forget the eyes, either. With fewer oil glands in the skin around the eyes, the delicate eye contour is particularly susceptible to winter’s wrath. Use eye cream morning and evening to prevent this fragile zone from drying out.
Winter Lifestyle Skin-Saving Tips
- Don gloves when heading outdoors, as this extra barrier will help protect your skin, plus look stylish to boot
- Keep drinking water or try decaffeinated coffee or tea; add lemon and honey, or a bouillon cube for flavor
- Shower no longer than five to 15 minutes, and use lukewarm water
- Use a humidifier to increase humidity indoors