10 Things You Must Do To Protect Your Skin In Winter
Don’t let your skin guard down simply because it’s not tipping 95 degrees in the shade right now. Your skin needs just as much protection in winter as it does in the summer. Maybe even more so.
Cold, wintry air robs your skin of moisture… Bright sunshine breaks down collagen and is the number one cause of premature skin aging… Oh, and did we mention that wind can cause your lips to crack, peel and even bleed? It’s clear that winter is a tricky little customer for your skin to deal with. Unless you know what you’re doing, that is.
Read the tips below and in ten minutes, you totally will!
1. Slap On Your Daily SPF
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again (and again… and again... and, well, you get the picture), sunscreen is important every day of the year. The sun doesn’t pack up its bags and go away as soon as summer’s over. It’s right there in the sky every day, and while its heat might not be quite as intense come winter, the light it emits (and that’s the important thing here) is still very much present.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, even on cloudy days, 80 percent of the sun’s damaging UV rays manage to work their way through to your skin. And that’s a lot of radiation just waiting to damage your collagen, elastin and DNA.
Fight back with a broad-spectrum daily moisturizer that packs a solid SPF 30 or above.
2. Use A Bedroom Humidifier
Winter air = dry air, which can strip your skin of natural oils, break down your skin's protective barrier and exacerbate dryness and dehydration. This is why humidifiers (which add extra moisture into the air) are such a genius idea for your home. OK, so it might be a little excessive to install one in every room in your house, but if there’s one place your skin will really benefit from one, it’s your bedroom. Set it around the 40-50 percent humidity mark and not only will this help balance and hydrate your skin, you’ll also probably sleep way better as an added bonus.
3. Invest In An Antioxidant Serum
Neutralize the damaging assault from environmental free radicals by applying a topical antioxidant serum every morning after cleansing and before moisturizing. This will help fight damage caused by everything from the sun through to pollution, cigarette smoke and other daily nasties.
Our favorite winter antioxidant has to be vitamin C because it nixes free radicals AND helps give your skin a certain glow that’s rare during the cold, gloomy months. Try Vitamin C Serum for your daily hit of the C-dog. Or, to add an extra boost of hydration – which never goes amiss at this time of year – go for Hyaluronic Acid Serum.
4. Limit Hot Baths
Sure, a daily soak in a hot bath can make you feel like a million dollars in the short term, but hot water is one of your skin’s biggest enemies. How so? It strips away your skin's natural lipids, compromising your barrier function and leading to all manner of skin no-nos like irritation, inflammation, dryness and dehydration.
According to the National Eczema Association, baths should be limited to 10 or 15 minutes and you should never bathe in super hot water. Warm? Fine. Scorchio? Not so much.
5. Cleanse With Care
If there’s one area of your skincare routine that should be scrutinized during winter, it’s cleansing. Poor cleansing (the kind that uses hot water and harsh surfactants) strips away natural oils and upsets the balance of your skin’s naturally low pH. Cue irritation, breakouts, dryness, the works.
The key is to go gentle all the way. Cleanse with lukewarm water and use only kind-to-your-skin formulations that don’t overly dry it out at a surface level. With no harsh surfactants and plenty of skin-loving oils and antioxidants, Vitamin C Brightening Cleanser has your back here.
6. Don’t Crank Up Your Heating Too Much
When you couple cold temps outside with scorching ones inside, you might as well welcome skin issues like redness and irritation with open arms. The reason for this is that sudden contrasts in temperature cause your blood vessels to dilate, making your skin flush. Central heating also sucks water out of the air… and consequently your skin. Bad news all round.
Set your heating no higher than 68 degrees during the day and either switch it off at night or at least turn it down to a comfortable 58 degrees. Honestly, your skin will thank you for it – as will your energy bill!
7. Up Your Moisturizing Game
If there’s ever a time to moisturize more than normal, it’s during the winter months when dry skin is almost a given. If you feel like your regular moisturizer doesn’t quite get the job done as soon as fall turns to winter, try a richer formulation that contains occlusive ingredients like beeswax, cocoa butter and shea butter. Occlusives create a physical barrier on the surface of your skin to protect it from the elements and help prevent moisture loss.
Our Vitamin C Deep Hydration Night Cream is a particular favorite this time of year because it contains organic cocoa butter and beeswax, as well as glycerin and aloe to hydrate. Try applying it immediately after cleansing (while your skin is still damp) to lock in moisture and recharge your skin while you sleep.
8. Eat A Water-Rich Diet
Another great way to help combat winter dryness and dehydration is to make sure you include plenty of water-rich foods in your diet. Watermelon is awesome, as are oranges, strawberries, tomatoes, cucumber, lettuce and yogurt.
Similarly, try to cut down on some of the baddies in your diet which tend to be dehydrating for your poor, winter-worn complexion. Salt, for starters, will suck all the moisture out of your skin. It also increases inflammation and weakens your collagen. So there’s that.
9. Be Gentle As You Towel-Dry
Aggressively rubbing your skin dry with a towel after cleansing? Bad idea. Patting it dry with a gentle dabbing motion? Excellent. This will reduce any risk of irritation and dehydration – neither of which you want, especially in the winter when both of these are at their highest.
10. Avoid Chemical-Laced Skincare
Finally, sticking with a gentle skincare plan is definitely the way forward when temperatures are at their lowest. Dry, dehydrated skin means your barrier function isn't working at its best, allowing irritants, toxins and other potential allergens to upset your skin and exacerbate existing conditions like eczema, rosacea, psoriasis and acne.
The good news is that all TruSkin products are formulated without the major skin-upsetting ingredients, including harsh sulfates, parabens, phthalates, soy, PEGs and silicone.
We're good like that, you see. ;)