Like most people I look forward to Christmas – what I don’t look forward to, is how my skin likes to take on the texture as a (distressed) leather bag, not ideal. The slightest mention of the cold and my skin becomes dry and unmanageable and my skincare regime has to be altered to accommodate for the inclement weather that will no doubt linger until June. Here’s some things that I change or incorporate into my routine at this time of year to keep my skin in top condition.
This first one is to drink at least 8 glasses of water a day. Technically this one should be practised all year round, but lets admit it, who has time (or remembers) to drink so much water every single day? And if you do, it’s a game of running to the nearest restroom every 5 seconds for a bathroom break. However at this time of year keeping your skin hydrated is one of the most important things you can do – increased heat indoors strips the air, and your skin of moisture, meaning you your skin can look flaky and dry; keeping your body topped up with water will hydrate you from the inside out, flush out impurities and keeps your skin looking dewy and healthy.
Hot water may feel great after a freezing cold commute home from work – I personally love the feeling of sinking into a scolding hot bath and relaxing at the end of the day, however hot water can be extremely drying on the skin – instead wash your face with warm water that is just hot enough to open up the pores and remove any dirt or dead skin but not too hot that it will be harsh on the skin or bring out rosacea. The best thing to do post shower is to pat your face until almost dry and then apply your moisturiser whilst the skin is still slightly damp to lock in the moisture from the shower.Forget the fragrance – your skin can be irritated during the cold months due to it being more open to the likes of chemicals within products so to give your skin a break, try removing the products in your routine that contain a fragrance. The scent can often be a synthetic component within the product and can trigger reactions in the skin, leaving it dry or cracked rather than your desired dewy result.
When your skin is dry and can often be flaky it is (very) tempting to reach for the exfoliator and rub your skin raw in the hope of removing the delicate flakes that are just so god damn noticeable! However doing this during the period when your skin is already basically starving for moisture will dry it out even more if you have sensitive skin, giving you the opposite effect. This doesn’t mean that you can’t exfoliate – find a product with a fine grainy texture and gently buff it into the skin rather than harshly rubbing; do this around once a week depending on how severe your dry patches are and it will help to get rid of the excess oil and also stop you from breaking out. Lock in moisture immediately after to make sure your skin doesn’t dry out.
The last thing is to assess your moisturiser. In the summer months you can use something a little lighter because of increased moisture in the air however in the winter you can develop dry patches; one thing you should never do, is pick at them. You need to choose a moisturiser that is heavy on the skin and will repair your skin whilst giving your skin the nourishment it needs.
When carrying out your daily routine for your face it’s crucial to think of the areas that aren’t as hard wearing and could do with a little more TLC. The skin around your eyes is a lot thinner than the skin on the rest of your face meaning it’s more prone to reacting during the harsh winter – a moisture-rich eye cream will do wonders around the eyes when applied morning and night, keeping your peepers bright and fresh.
Last but not least is one thing many people forget about when the sun isn’t physically blinding them…sun cream. My daily moisturise contains an SPF so I don’t have to worry about applying extra products that will build up on my skin and add extra time to my regime in a morning, I wake up early enough already! However UV rays are still there when there is only cloud in the sky so increased exposure to raw skin will only make your skin more dry and irritated, and also make you age quicker!