Ease the Chill with Our Winter Skin Care Routine

Cold weather doesn’t just make you shiver. It also does a number on your skin.

Frigid temperatures and low humidity cause the skin to dry out more easily. Indoor heating systems also have a drying effect. 

As moisture evaporates, the skin becomes dehydrated and we lose the natural oils that are essential for a healthy complexion. Here are some of the skin issues you may notice when the mercury plunges

  • Dry skin
  • Redness
  • Flaking
  • Itching
  • Cracking and bleeding
  • Dull, tired appearance

Those with conditions like eczema or psoriasis may experience more flare-ups. You may have an increased risk of infections or inflammation during the winter. These issues are more pronounced as we age and may also be exacerbated by some medications. 

The good news is there are many easy ways to protect your skin from harsh winter conditions. Here are our tips for keeping that soft, radiant glow all season long.

#1: Take Lukewarm Baths & Showers

Hot water strips away moisture and essential oils, which dries out your skin and leads to even more irritation. Opt for lukewarm water instead.

Use gentle soaps and cleansers and a soft washcloth to soothe your skin as you clean. Pat skin dry with a soft, clean towel. Avoid harsh cleansers and hard scrubbing to avoid further irritation.

#2: Moisturize After Bathing

The best time to apply moisturizer is right after a bath or shower. This helps your skin retain moisture and avoid dryness. 

Good moisturizer ingredients to look for include humectants like hyaluronic acid or glycerin, as well as ceramides to replenish lipid levels. Other moisture-friendly skin care ingredients include: 

  • Cocoa butter
  • Shea butter
  • Rosehip oil
  • Jojoba oil
  • Sunflower oil
  • Safflower oil
  • Petroleum jelly

If you’re experiencing itchiness, consider an anti-itch cream with hydrocortisone or aloe vera for soothing relief. 

Another great habit? If you wash your hands frequently to avoid germs, apply a moisturizing hand cream afterward to keep them soft!

#3: Choose Gentle Products

For most people, it’s okay to use the same skin care products year-round. If you suffer from dry skin, you may need to switch to a heavier moisturizing cream in winter.

It’s usually best to opt for creams over lotions. That’s because creams include more oils, moisturizing ingredients and a soothing, thicker consistency. Lotions have a thinner texture and are less effective at relieving severe dryness. 

If your hands and feet are dry, apply a soothing cream after bathing. Cover with clean gloves and socks overnight to lock in moisture.

Those with sensitive skin should avoid irritating ingredients in any products that come into contact with the skin. Examples include soaps, moisturizers, cosmetics, laundry detergents and fabric softeners. Fragrances, alcohol and harsh cleansers tend to strip away oils and dry out the skin. Gentle, fragrance-free products are best for comfortable, irritation-free skin. 

Quality, medical-grade skin care products can make a big difference in the health and appearance of skin. Cayce Medical Spa has wide selection both at the spa and online, and we’d be happy to discuss the benefits for your particular concerns.

#4: Wear Sunscreen (Yes, Even When It’s Cold!)

Believe it or not, you can get sunburned when it’s cold and even on cloudy days. Apply a broad spectrum sunscreen of at least 30 SPF every morning, year round. And don’t forget to reapply throughout the day.

Just like sand at the beach, snow actually reflects sunlight upward, which increases your risk of sun damage even more. In addition to sunscreen, wear a comfortable hat and sunglasses for skiing, sledding or shoveling your driveway. 

#5: Stay Hydrated

Most people already know that drinking plenty of water is essential for good health. It lubricates your joints and helps you maintain a proper body temperature.

It also helps your skin stay soft and healthy from the inside. Avoid too much alcohol and caffeine, as these can have a drying effect. Drinking water will help you feel great and look your best.

#6: Use a Humidifier

If you live in a dry climate, low humidity makes it harder to keep your skin soft. Add in the effects of running your furnace, and your skin gets even more irritated. 

A quality humidifier adds just enough moisture to the air to relieve dry, itchy skin. As an added bonus, it may also relieve a sore throat so you cough less often.

#7: When to See a Dermatologist

If your skin condition doesn’t improve with at-home care, schedule a free skin consultation with Cayce Medical Spa. Based on your results, you may receive prescription-strength oral or topical treatments to ease any skin conditions you have. You may also benefit from a number of in-office treatments for healthier, more beautiful skin.
Call us at 573-234-6930 or contact us online to book your appointment today!

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