Dry skin can be uncomfortable, and it can lead to other problems as the skin becomes more reactive to irritants and allergens.
As the winter weather turns colder and the air gets drier, it’s vital to protect your skin and take extra measures to increase your moisture intake – drink lots of water, eat more fruits and veggies, and moisturize regularly.
Use a Humidifier
A humidifier can add extra moisture to your air and help with dry skin and stuffy noses. The goal is to prevent the air in your home from becoming too dry.
Be sure to keep your humidifier clean, as dirty water vapor can cause respiratory troubles. Wash the tank and refill with fresh water daily.
Less Hot Showers
Taking very hot showers is not healthy for your skin, no matter what time of year.
Hot water strips away natural oils needed to keep skin hydrated. Scrubbing and over-exfoliation can also damage the skin’s oily protective barrier.
Limit your time in the shower, and be sure to moisturize after, even if you don’t feel your skin is dry enough to warrant it.
It’s easy to forget about moisturizing after a shower or during the summer. In winter, frequent moisturizing is essential for keeping skin hydrated and healthy.
There are countless claims made about the superiority of this moisturizer or that one. Still, this randomized, controlled trial suggests that a consistent and regular (twice daily) moisturizing routine is more important than any particular ingredient formulation. None of the tested creams and therapeutic moisturizers performed significantly better than any other – they were all effective at treating moderate to severe xerosis (dry skin).
Drink plenty of water, especially in winter.
Dehydration can cause many problems for the skin, including dryness, itching, burning sensations, irritation, flaking skin, and stinging eyes. The skin may even become more sensitive to allergens during periods of dehydration.
Don’t wait until you are feeling thirsty – by that point, you are already dehydrated.
Your diet also plays an important role here. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables, as they provide water and antioxidants and other nutrients that can protect your cells from environmental damage and help your body generate healthy cells.
It’s easy to forget about sunscreen in winter. The weather is colder, there tends to be more cloud cover, and it’s easy to imagine that your skin doesn’t need the same protection.
But the sun’s UV light penetrates through cloud cover, and snow reflects it up into our face. The best defense against sun damage is to apply good sunscreen all year round – anytime you are out during the day for more than a few minutes.
Your skin is too important to neglect it during winter. Keep it hydrated, moisturized, clean, and protected!