Our skin combats many enemies, including pollution, the sun’s UV rays, skincare products with harsh ingredients, and more.
But winter poses unique challenges to your unsuspecting epidermis. Fortunately, you can take steps to soothe your skin when you’re hit with wind, bone-dry indoor air, and the sun’s rays, which don’t take a winter vacation.
Dr. Alexis Stephens is your partner in care as you identify how you want your skin to look and feel: clear, smooth, and healthy. The treatments she offers address a multitude of problems, from sun damage to acne scars.
At Parkland Dermatology & Cosmetic Surgery, Dr. Stephens also educates you about what you can do at home to support your skin health, and she offers a range of the highest quality skincare products.
How to help your skin face winter
Winter can do a job on your skin, thanks to shiver-inducing temperatures, snow, and staying inside our homes and offices, which typically offer little humidity. The unforgiving combination of indoor and outdoor elements can make your skin rebel, causing:
- Excessive dryness and flakiness from your scalp to the soles of your feet
- A tight feeling in your skin
- Flare-ups of conditions like eczema, rosacea, and psoriasis
- Chapped, painful lips
- Cracked hands
You don’t have to accept skin problems and discomfort in the winter as inevitable. The good news is that you can take steps to keep your skin hydrated, calm, and healthy, even in the frosty depths of February.
1. Pamper your skin — everywhere
Whether it’s your face, feet, or lips, moisturize.
Products known as superfatted soaps, whether they’re liquid or bar soaps, are infused with healing oils, which your face will love. Winter is also a time when it may be OK to skip using toner, depending on your situation.
Glycerin-based moisturizers can heal cracked hands, while slathering petroleum jelly on rough heels, wrapping them in saran, and putting on socks while you sleep can seriously soften them.
Heavier creams and ointments are more soothing for your body during the winter, whereas lighter lotions may suffice during the warmer months.
If you’ve got painful chapped lips, apply products that contain beeswax or petroleum jelly to your lips. There are tons of balms, sticks, and potted glossy products out there. It’s also important to opt for lip products that contain sunscreen so your lips can be protected from UV rays when you’re outside. Licking your lips and excessive sun or wind exposure can worsen chapped lips.
2. Environmental protection
We mentioned that our homes and offices are filled with very dry air because of our heating systems, and the outside air is often super dry as well.
Getting a high-quality humidifier for your home can go a long way toward making indoor air more skin-friendly. You can even buy small humidifiers meant to address dryness in the air in smaller rooms, like offices and bedrooms.
3. Remember to exfoliate
Getting the dead, flaky skin off your face and body sets you up for better moisturizer absorption. Without the flakes, your skin can drink up whatever you apply to it. Exfoliants that contain lactic or salicylic acid are gentler than others.
For your body, try using an exfoliating mitt gently while your skin is wet.
4. Bathing beauty
Speaking of baths and showers, brief showers are best during the winter since long, hot soaks in the tub are drying to your skin. If you’re a bath lover, concentrate on the fact that at least you’ll save on your water bill!
Keeping your bathing water lukewarm rather than hot also prevents your skin’s oils from being stripped away.
After you bathe is the best time to moisturize too, since your pores are open and ready to soak in the moisturizer. Hyaluronic acid- or glycerin-based products also encourage your skin to drink more water.
5. Protect your skin from the elements
In winter, shielding your skin from plummeting temps and unforgiving winds is critical. If you don’t you can put yourself at risk for frostbite in addition to dull, dry skin. Always bundle up when you go outside with layers, a warm hat, gloves, or mittens.
Remember too, that you should never skip using a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30, even on a cloudy winter day. Those damaging UV rays still find their way to you.
6. Depend on your dermatologist
Discuss treatment for winter skin issues with Dr. Stephens. She not only has the most advanced treatments for chronic skin conditions as well as seasonal ones, she offers only the best skincare products to provide your skin with relief from winter woes and keep it in tip-top shape.
Call our conveniently located Coral Springs office at 754-999-3376 to schedule an appointment, or book one online.