The cold weather is here (well, for most of us), and your skin is probably reacting to the drops in temperature. For dry, oily, and combination skin, the cold weather means goodbye to your warm-weather habits and hello to your new, winter-friendly skincare routine.
Today’s post is all about the simple things you can do to help maintain your skin’s health and glow even when the weather outside is frightful.
Every skincare routine starts with a good cleanse, and a clean face is the best canvas. And one of the best ways to get your oily or combination skin under control? An oil cleanser.
This may seem counter-intuitive, but oil cleansers are actually perfect for all skin types, and here’s why: your skin needs a gentle cleanser that cleans and maintains your natural pH balance without stripping your skin of its natural moisture, and that’s exactly what oil cleansers do and without the use of soap which can dry you out.
Use your oil cleanser to wash away excess sebum (which is one of the culprits behind acne) and blackheads without diminishing the moisture your skin actually needs to maintain health and elasticity.
Repeat after us: I will not exfoliate every day.
When you exfoliate, you help remove dead skin cells from the top layer of your skin, which helps prevent blackheads, clogged pores, acne, and the creation of excess oils.
But, like any good thing, exfoliation needs to be done in moderation.
Some experts recommend once a week, while some recommend it three times a week for oily and combination skin. We suggest you start with a once a week exfoliation and see if that makes a difference. If after a few weeks you’re still getting dry, flakey patches on top of your oily skin, bump it up to twice or three times a week.
It’s important to use the right exfoliator, too, as some popular exfoliation products contain things like fruit pits that are large and jagged and can actually end up doing more harm than good. To keep things natural, try homemade or natural products that contain ingredients like cucumber, coconut oil, coffee, oatmeal, honey, green tea, or lemon and sugar. Avoid large chunks in your exfoliators.
You know your skin better than anyone, so be sure to check the ingredients to make sure there are no allergens or irritants.
Not only is it important to hydrate your skin with moisturizer, but it’s also important to stay hydrated by drinking water, as well. First, let’s talk about hydrating/moisturizing oily or combination skin. Like cleansing, you may be surprised to learn that an oil moisturizer or hydrator can help reduce the oil production in your oily skin. The same goes for combination skin, too.
Facial oil products help remove dead skin that clogs your pores and signal your body to make extra oil. Facial oils also repair your skin’s moisture barrier that keeps your skin hydrated, smooth, and glowing.
Stick with Oil-Free makeup
Try to avoid any make-up with oil in it as you don’t want to add the oil onto your hydrated skin. It can disrupt your skin’s pH balance and create too much oil, which will clog your pores and undo all the good you’ve done with your skincare routine.
Winter Skincare Tips for Dry Skin
Cleanse x2 (Double Cleanse)
As we covered earlier in the blog, oil cleansers are a great way to keep your skin hydrated and healthy. But did you know that your dry skin will also benefit from nightly double cleanses?
A double cleanse starts with an oil cleansing to help remove excess skin cells without stripping your skin of the little hydration it may have. Once you’ve gently cleansed with your oil cleanser, use a gentle hydrating cleanser to clean your face. The oil cleanser helps remove makeup, sunscreen, or any other product residue you may have on your skin from the day and creates a better surface for the second cleanser to come in and do a deeper clean or pores the surface of your skin.
Because this double cleanse is a deeper clean, it’s recommended to do it only at night as double cleansing twice a day may end up damaging your skin’s moisture layer making your skin even dryer.
In the morning, you can use a hydrating cleanser to get your face ready for the day.
When winter weather comes, humidity leaves. With this in mind, if you use a toner during the warmer months, it’s best to retire it for the colder weather. While a toner can help maintain your skin’s balance when it’s hot and humid, it will strip your skin of needed hydration and oil during the colder months.
It’s also a good idea to exfoliate just once a week. While exfoliation helps remove dead skin cells that a normal cleansing won’t be able to, it’s important not to disrupt or damage your skin’s natural moisture barrier by exfoliating too much. Try to stick to exfoliators made from plant-based products that are gentle and don’t contain large, jagged pieces that can end up injuring your skin.
Your dry skin is thirsty and not just for moisturizer. One of the most important things you can do for your skin and your overall health is to get plenty of water during the day, no matter what the season.
For moisturizing, it’s important to use a moisturizer that helps replenish your skin’s natural moisture while also creating a protective barrier to keep the harsh wind and low temperatures from dying you out.
Facial oils are perfect for this and can be applied more throughout the day, sparingly, to help keep your skin hydrated if you start to feel it drying out.
It may also be a good time to invest in a night mask or overnight moisturizer that does a little extra duty while you sleep. Don’t forget that while you sleep, your body heals itself, so a little extra care for your dry skin can help aid your body’s natural process of healing and restoring balance while you’re catching some Zs.
Avoid Hot Showers and Baths
Sometimes there’s nothing better than a hot shower or bath on a cold day, but prolonged exposure to hot water can damage your skin in a few different ways. First, long, hot showers and baths can cause redness, peeling, and inflammation, kind of like a sunburn. Secondly, the hot water and steam will strip your skin of its natural moisture balance, drying your skin out even more. You *can* have hot baths and showers, just not for too long.
Get a Humidifier
In general, humidifiers are a handy tool to have around your house. Not only do humidifiers help keep the air moist and clean, but they can also keep your skin from drying out during the cold months. A humidifier helps create natural humidity in your home via water vapor or steam.
Bonus? House plants love them, too!
Winter Skincare Tips for Every Skin Type
No matter what your skin type, where you live, or your gender, there are things that you should always do (no matter what season!).
Drinking water helps both your insides and your outside. Be sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day; you’ll be surprised how much of a positive effect it has on your skin and health within a week.
Just because it's cloudy, raining, or snowing, doesn’t mean the sun’s rays aren’t reaching you. Sun damage can lurk under the skin and become more visible once you start to age, but it can also appear in younger skin and create scarring that goes several skin layers deep. Prolonged exposure to UV rays is the cause of 90% of non-melanoma skin cancers. Use sunscreen on any skin exposed to sunlight, not just your face and neck.
Don’t Forget Your Lips
Your lips need just as much love as the rest of your skin. While applying some facial products to your lips are not recommended, there are natural ingredients and other ways you can keep your lips healthy, smooth, and kissable like drinking water, dabbing the with a drop of almond oil, light sugar exfoliation, strawberries, and chapsticks or tints with rose water and SPF built-in. Also, use lipsticks sparingly in the cold weather as the ingredients can dry out your lips and leave them chapped.
Baby, it’s cold outside, so let’s all resolve to take better of ourselves and our skin.