As a Medical Esthetician, and owner of the Sandra Downie Skin Spa + Acne Clinic and professional skin care line, I am often asked in the winter months how to make skin feel better. Not so tight. Not so dry. Not so irritated. With that said, today I’m going to share some of my favorite tips that allow me to get through these cold winter months feeling a bit more comfortable in my skin.
1. Exfoliation: Some people often skip this very important step in their skin care routine. Exfoliation, both physical and chemical are necessary to help the products we use after penetrate the skin better. If you are finding your skin to be flaky and/or looking like you have alligator skin, this is a must do step that should be done at least once a week on both your face and body.
2. Hydration: Using a humidifier this time of year is essential. The dry air in our homes, cars and work spaces can wreak havoc and deplete moisture in our skin. The use of a humidifier helps to add moisture in the air which will help your skin to feel less tight, less itchy and more hydrated. Also consuming water on a daily basis is key to hydrating the skin inside and out this time of year.
3. Moisturization: In the winter it is essential to use a thicker moisturizer than you would use in the warmer months. Moisturizers that come out of a bottle are a bit thinner and less emollient therefore less moisturizing. Moisturizers with a thicker consistently protect the skin more against the fluctuating temperatures inside and out. You will also want to incorporate a serum that has hyaluronic acid in the ingredients. Hyaluronic acid binds 1000 times its weight in moisture to the skin. When a serum has this in it’s ingredients you are sure to to feel the difference. TIP: Serums are treatments and thinner so they penetrate better. So be sure to apply ANY serum before you use a moisturizer. After showering, considering layering your moisturizers. Try using a body oil you can use in the shower and then immediately after drying off, while the skin is still damp, applying a body lotion. This layering will do wonders.
4. Gentle Cleansing: Using a gentler cleanser (non-foaming or low foaming) will help ensure the skin isn’t stripped of essential moisture. If you struggle with oily skin, it’s still OK to use a gentler cleaners during the winter months. Just use a gentler cleanser in the morning and your normal cleanser in the evening.