Spend just a few minutes outside on a cold day and you can feel the effects on your skin almost immediately: areas that are not bundled up start to sting and skin feels dry and tight. What’s more, prolonged exposure to bitter cold can lead to broken capillaries, tiny twisted veins that create redness and bruising on the face.
Cold weather almost always equates to lack of moisture in the air. Add a brisk wind and you’ve got the perfect recipe for dry skin.
Braving the Outdoors
• Wear a moisturizer with SPF 15 or higher to help protect skin from UV damage. This is especially important when there is snow on the ground, which can reflect the sun’s glare.
• Protect skin by wearing a hat, scarf, and gloves.
• Sport sunglasses on sunny or windy days to shield the eye area and prevent squinting, which can eventually lead to wrinkles.
• Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air — indoor heat can be just as drying as the cold outdoors.
• Take fairly quick, warm showers. Long, hot showers (however decadent they may feel) can rob skin of much needed moisture.
• Use a facial cleanser, not regular soap, to help remove makeup and dirt without stripping skin of essential natural oils.
• Use a moisturizing body wash and slather on a rich body lotion immediately after showering. If you are pressed for time, add an in-shower body lotion. It is a quick and easy multi-tasker.
• A deeply moisturizing night cream will help keep skin hydrated and supple. Look for one that contains glycerin (to draw moisture into skin), petrolatum (to prevent moisture loss), and Niacinimide (to help improve skin’s natural moisture barrier) for optimal hydration.
Use these tips in your daily regimen, for smooth, glowing, healthy-looking skin all winter long.