Cold Weather Skin Care Tips
These bright and sunny fall days can be difficult to distinguish from the summer that preceded them. But as we all know, our infamously temperamental climate can turn in an instant, and just because we don’t see much snow doesn’t mean Texans don’t experience some serious winter weather. Cold winter winds can cause everything from a slightly uncomfortable feeling of tightness in the facial skin, to chapping, flaking, cracking and even eczema. So as soon as you find yourself turning up the thermostat this season, begin thinking about how to best protect your skin, starting with these simple tips.
Make sure to moisturize
Even if a moisturizer is already part of your daily routine, you will likely need something a little heavier for the winter months. Not only will you be losing moisture outside in the cold, but also at home and at the office, or anywhere else the heat is turned up. Most moisturizers with a “light” lotion feel are water based, and while these are perfect for spring and summer, consider switching to a creamier oil based formula for now. Oil based moisturizers help build up a protective barrier in the outer layers of skin and can be applied at night before bed, as well as during your morning routine.
Don’t skimp on the sunscreen
Just because we will be seeing less of the sun doesn’t mean its rays aren’t still affecting you skin. Apply products with an SPF of at least 35 (broad-spectrum) on exposed skin, and consider wide brimmed wool hats for protection from the sun and the cold.
Use a humidifier at night
Humidifiers are small devices that suffuse the air with extra moisture, (and soothing essential oils if you like!) combating the drying effects of turning up the heat in your house and cutting down on the amount of moisturizer you’ll need the next morning. Plus, it’s beneficial for those who suffer from sleep apnea and can help ward off winter respiratory infections.
Avoid super hot soaks
It’s always tempting to sink into a hot bath or shower after coming in from the cold, but make sure you aren’t overdoing it. Excessive prolonged heat can actually break down lipids in the epidermis, leaving your skin vulnerable. Try turning down the temperature and staying in for shorter periods of time—your skin will be much happier for it.
And as always, stay hydrated
Without the sun beating down, it’s easier to forget the minimum 2 liters of water required to keep your body healthy and your skin plump and firm. Keep that water bottle close at hand year round.