Thursday, November 3, 2011

Winter skincare tips

I think we all know how to protect our skin against the sun during summer, but how can we take care of our skin during winter?

In the past I never stopped to think about changing my skincare routine untill the damage was already done: my skin turns flaky and dry and I get redness and rashes.

Sounds familiar? I did some research and testing and have some tips to share with you!

  • Switch to a heavier moisturizer or apply one locally on your problem areas. A good moisturizer contains humectant and occlusive ingredients. One draws moisture from the atmosphere to the skin, and the other locks in the skins own moisture and prevents it from drying out.  
  • Avoid ingredients like alcohol and sodium laureth sulfate. The lower their positions are in the ingredient list, the better.
  • Use a sunscreen with both UVA and UVB protection. Although the sun isn't shining bright, UVA radiation is always around to damage your skin. You can use a moisturizer or foundation with SPF or you can use a separate sunscreen.
  • Avoid hot baths or showers, no matter how tempting they may be during winter.. Water draws moisture from your skin and hot water is even more likely to do so. The temperature changes can also damage capillaries and cause couperose or rosacea.
  • Apply your moisturizer as soon as you step out of the shower! When the water on your skin evaporates, moisture is being drawn from your skin as well. 
  • Dont scrub too often, once a week is fine. Use a scrub with fine particles.
  • Use a hydrating face mask once a week, or more often if needed. You can buy one in store or make one yourself (stay updated for my favorite recipes!)
  • If your skin starts to get dry and flaky, do not remove the dry bits during daytime. You will get sore red patches and feel like an idiot. 
  • If the damage is done and you already have flaky skin, try this: apply a thick layer of heavy creme or balm, let it soak into your skin for a few minutes and then remove it using circular motions with a washing cloth or cotton pad. This will reduce the flakiness. Make sure to gently rinse and moisturize afterwards.
  • Use a liquid foundation and pat it on with your fingertips or a sponge, don't rub it in since this will only accentuate the dry spots. 
  • Avoid powder. If you insist on using a powder, use one that doesn't contain talc. It is known absorb moisture. You can use a setting spray to make your make-up appear less dry and caky. 
  • If you get heavily irritated skin, make sure to use creams with soothing ingredients like shea butter, aloe vera, calendula, almond oil, avocado oil,...

Everyone is different, so it takes some testing to see what works best for you.

The best tip I can give you is not to wait until your skin is in bad condition, but to start pampering it as the weather changes. Sudden changes in your skincare routine might have a reversed effect!

How do you protect your skin during winter? I'm always looking for new things to try.

Thanks for reading!

Pearl Squirrel

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