For most people, dry skin in the winter is inevitable. Cracked, peeling, flaking skin suddenly becomes your new norm. For some, dry skin can even escalate to having incredibly itchy skin or increased flare-ups of eczema. It’s all painful, uncomfortable, and can feel unattractive.
So why does our skin become so dry during the cooler months? Well, it’s usually because there’s no moisture in the air. When the weather is cold and dry, humidity is low. The water in our skin evaporates much more quickly in this kind of environment, and it can become even worse if it’s particularly windy too.
5 Tips to Rejuvenate Dry Skin in the Winter
To get back some semblance of a summer glow and smooth skin, try these 5 tips to help rejuvenate your dry skin:
1. Moisturize your skin.
This may seem like an obvious tip, but it’s one that many people overlook. While the moisturizer you use in the spring or summer may work out well for you, you’re potentially better off with a different kind of moisturizer for the winter months. It’s best to look for an oil-based moisturizer that will help create a protective layer on that skin that retains moisture. Most of the water-based lotions or creams don’t do this well enough to combat the cold, dry air in the winter.
2. Turn on the humidifier.
Most of us have our heaters running during the winter, but this can be one of the biggest contributors to dry skin. It’s not always realistic to keep the heater off, so instead turn on a humidifier as well. The humidifier will help distribute more moisture into the air and keep your skin from drying out.
3. Avoid long hot baths or showers.
It can feel incredibly nice to jump into a really hot shower or bath when it’s cold outside, but your skin will beg to differ. The heat can eliminate lipid barriers in the skin and cause you to lose a lot of moisture in your skin. Instead, opt for a warm, short shower or bath. Your skin will thank you later.
4. Don’t use skincare products with added alcohols and sulfates.
Products like cleansing towelettes are convenient, but typically have the kind of alcohols and sulfates that irritate and dry out your skin. Instead, opt for a cold cream cleanser that will not only remove your makeup but simultaneously moisturize as well.
5. Buff your skin.
It’s important to remove the dead skin to be able to moisturize and penetrate through to the new skin. Use a light scrub a couple of times a week to slough off the dead skin. If your skin is severely dry, skip the scrub and go for something more gentle like a wet washcloth.
Don’t forget, it’s important to take care of your diet and stay hydrated just like you would any other time of the year. Your skin can be a reflection of your internal health, so it’s important to make sure you’re drinking enough water and taking in the proper amount of nutrients, year-round.
Davis, S. (n.d.). 10 Winter Skin Care Tips. Retrieved January 29, 2018, from https://www.webmd.com/beauty/features/ten-winter-skin-care-tips#3
Wu, D. J. (2010, September 20). Top 10 Causes of Dry Skin. Retrieved January 29, 2018, from https://www.everydayhealth.com/hs/dry-skin-relief/dr-wu-causes-of-dry-skin/