Winter is around the corner, and its time to shake out those boots and jackets. While the cooler weather is a welcome relief after the heat and humidity, the lack of moisture can make your skin excessively dry, dull and itchy. For this very reason, I often find the number of cases of psoriasis, eczemas and atopic dermatitis rise in these months. Some peoples skin reacts in a completely different way; it breaks out and is prone to shine attacks as they acclimatize to the seasonal change.
Read on to know more about winter skin care tips for the winter season
Howsoever you skin reacts, the transition from summer to winter calls for some adjustments in your skincare routine, either because of the dry, cool weather or as a palliative to restore your skin’s health thanks to an over-exposure to sunlight all through summer. As a first step, you need to continue with your the normal CTM routine.
If your skin feels tight and itchy, it might make sense to switch to creamier/more hydrating CTM products. It may make sense to switch to a milky cleanser or soap-free formula that won’t disrupt your skin’s protective lipid barrier. Also avoid washing your face excessively (twice a day is enough) and don’t use using face cleansers containing AHAs like Glycolic Acid and BHAs like Salicylic Acid that strip skin of natural oils making it more sensitive.
You should not exfoliate more than once a week, and then too with gentle exfoliants like those present in creamy cleansers. Oatmeal is a gentle nourishing exfoliant that also helps nourish skin, so look for products with that is the main ingredient.
Astringent toners contain high levels of alcohol (about 30-50%) and should be swapped with natural skin toners that roughly contain about 5% alcohol, as these will prevent the skin from getting irritated and sensitive. Rosewater and Cucumber juice are good natural replacements for regular toners.
Nourish, Nourish, and then Nourish some more...that should be your mantra for winters. You could change your moisturizer to a cream-based one or if you find it difficult to use in the daytime, try using two different moisturizers a light lotion-based one in the daytime and a creamier, heavier one containing Shea Butter, Oatmeal extracts, Ceramides, Hyaluronic Acid and Vitamin E at night. These moisturizers not only lead to sealing the water content in the upper layers of skin by preventing TEWL (trans-epidermal water loss) but also hydrate the skin by leading to swelling of the corneocytes or skin cells by absorbing water from the surrounding.
Creams containing Vitamin C also act as good hydrating agents and also act as anti-pigmentary agent by removing superficial skin darkening and dullness that normally sets in during the winter. Use a nourishing lotion or emulsion-based sunscreen that glides easily on skin and has a moisturizing effect.
Shifting to a moisturizing soap for bathing or a mild, creamy body wash is also a good idea. Gel-based shower products tend to be more drying. I always tell patients to avoid prolonged, hot showers even though they may feel very nice because they lead to changes in the skins Ph. Skin irritation sets in when the lipid balance and pH falls below 5.5. Also, dont forget to moisturize your skin immediately post your shower as damp skin absorbs moisturizing formulas best.
If you use makeup regularly, switch your regular make up remover which may be alcohol-based to a micellar water-based formula. If your skin is very dry, you could also use baby oil or Coconut oil to remove makeup, especially around the lips and cheeks to avoid irritation to these sensitive areas. Makeup tends to crack when the skin is very dry. In these circumstances, spray your face and neck with a water mist and then apply the moisturizer to seal in hydration before starting on your base.
Lip care is also an important part of your skin regime in winter Use a hydrating lip balm containing Bees Wax with inbuilt SPF to avoid chapped and pigmented lips.
The other body part thats often neglected during winter is your feet. Often the heels become cracked and fissured in the winter. You must remember to moisturize your feet at night just before going to bed after soaking them in water for five minutes and gently buffing them with a pumice stone. You need a thick moisturizer that contains a humectant like Urea or Lactic Acid to hydrate them and an exfoliant like Salicylic Acid to remove dead cell buildup.
Last but not the least, dont forget to drink lots of water. Take your antioxidants regularly and maintain a healthy lifestyle to get healthy glowing skin throughout out the year.