La Niña caused harsh winter conditions last year, and people worldwide experienced colder temperatures and more snowfall. They also recognized changes in their appearance during the winter months as the cold affected their skin.
Various weather shifts wreak havoc on your skin. Some people notice an increase in cracking and flaking in the winter, while others experience an overproduction of oil. You can manage these changes by recognizing the weather alterations and adjusting your routine.
What Happens to Your Skin in the Winter?
One of the leading causes of skin changes in the winter is low humidity levels. They decrease during the colder months because cool air holds less moisture. People also use their heating units in the winter, which burn indoor water vapors.
Some people engage in outdoor winter sports that increase their susceptibility to skin damage. Skiing, ice skating and other activities expose them to wind, snow and sun rays.
When it is cold outside, many people believe sunscreen is unnecessary because of the low ultraviolet (UV) index. However, UV rays can penetrate the atmosphere and cause sunburns even in winter. High winds may also cause dry skin, eczema, psoriasis, cracking and other adverse effects. You can reduce these issues by practicing an efficient winter skin care routine.
The Importance of Skin Care
Proper skin care routines have various benefits. You shed dead skin cells throughout the day, which causes irritation without effective prevention techniques. When you remove impurities and moisturize your subsurface layers of skin, you may prevent wrinkles, acne and other adverse reactions.
The harsh effects of winter weather can also cause permanent skin damage. Keeping an efficient skin care routine can prevent harm, and prevention is easier than correction. Maintaining clear skin additionally enhances your self-esteem, which can improve your mental health.
Skin care is also important because your skin is your body’s largest organ. When you take care of your skin, you support your general health and well-being.
There are eight ways to improve your skin care routine this winter and protect it from the elements.
1. Continue Using SPF
One of the most effective ways to protect your skin in the winter is by using a moisturizer with a sun protection factor (SPF). The product can also protect your skin from indoor lighting, which causes adverse effects over time. You should use daily serums and creams with at least 30 SPF for optimal benefits.
You may also benefit from using a moisturizer with retinol. The ingredient is a form of vitamin A that promotes new skin growth. It also acts as an exfoliant to remove dead skin and nourish the new layer.
2. Turn Down The Heat
You can maintain clear and healthy skin in the winter by turning down the hot water in the shower and bath. High levels of heat cause inflammation, peeling and itching, similar to a sunburn. Hot water also interferes with your natural moisture balance.
The heat can strip your skin of the natural oils, proteins and fats that generally protect the organ. It also makes your skin overproduce oil to compensate for the dryness, causing acne and other unpleasant effects. Take lukewarm showers and baths to protect your skin in the winter, warming up with blankets and layers after getting out.
3. Stay Hydrated
You may engage in fewer physical activities during the winter because of weather-related limitations. You generally consume less water when you don’t sweat as much. Dehydration can cause dry skin and increase the appearance of aging.
Minimize the adverse effects of dehydration by consuming roughly 2.25 liters of tap or mineral water each day. You may also switch out coffee for green tea to improve hydration and your antioxidant intake. Straying away from dehydrating products and consumption patterns can effectively improve your skin.
4. Use Moisturizing Hand Soap
Another factor influencing poor skin in the winter is handwashing. The transmission rates of the flu and colds increase in the colder months, and it’s a good idea to protect yourself by washing hands frequently.
However, overwashing your hands can strip your skin of its natural oils and moisture. You can protect your skin from dryness by using moisturizing soaps. You can also apply lotion directly after washing and place a balm on chapped areas.
5. Hydrate in the Bath
You can also protect their skin in the colder months by taking baths. Submerging your skin for extended periods may improve hydration levels. Baths also decrease cortisol levels, which is a hormone that damages the skin.
You may add bath oil to the water before getting in to decrease eczema symptoms. It is also important to moisturize afterward to improve your skin’s moisture retention.
6. Decrease Your Alcohol Intake
Alcohol also adversely affects your skin. Cocktails, wine and beer cause inflammation in the body that interferes with the skin’s natural equilibrium. Alcoholic beverages can worsen the effects of eczema, psoriasis and rosacea.
Excessive drinking also causes dehydration. Protect your skin by limiting your weekly beverage consumption. You can also drink more water when consuming alcohol to minimize the effects.
Exfoliating in the winter can help prevent acne and give you a head-to-toe glow. Removing dead skin prevents clogged pores and stimulates cell regrowth. It’s a good idea to apply a moisturizer after washing away the dead skin to protect the new layer.
You can exfoliate with a washcloth or a beaded body wash if you have sensitive skin. Those with tougher skin can use a dry brush to remove the top flakey layer. You should also remain mindful of your daily routine and tendencies that cause dryness to protect your skin.
8. Prevent Lick Eczema
You may try to moisturize your lips by licking them. However, saliva can exacerbate dryness and cause cracking and chapped skin. The skin on your lips is more sensitive than other areas of your body, making protection essential.
Keep your lips moist in the winter with ointments and balms. You should also restrict your consumption of acidic foods and beverages to minimize licking and dryness. Also, be sure to cover your lips with a scarf or mask when skiing or dealing with high winds.
When Is the Best Time to Start a Winter Skin Care Routine?
You should adjust your skin care routine in the fall and explore any reactions. Test different products by using samples before investing in a new set of moisturizers and soaps. It is essential to remain aware of slight changes in your skin throughout the seasons for optimal protection and to keep that healthy glow all year.