What is it about winter that conjures up such lovely images? Sleigh rides, big sweaters, even marshmallows floating on the surface of a steaming hot cup of hot chocolate. But then there’s also dry, cracked skin that feels like it’s being rubbed with sandpaper and looks like it’s never seen the light of day. That’s why it’s so important to switch up your skincare routine during the winter, so your skin can not only look but feel its best during this season.
Keep reading for all our tricks and tips for keeping your skin in great shape during the winter.
IN A NUTSHELL
Main Takeaways: Changes in weather can lead to changes in your skin. In the winter months, there is less moisture in the air, which can lead to drier skin. It’s good to add more moisture into your routine.
Good to Know: Using a humidifier in the winter months can help keep your skin hydrated.
Tips for the Best Winter Skin Care Routine
A winter skin care routine goes far beyond just your skin care products. How you treat your skin in winter and how you prepare it for winter weather has a lot to do with keeping your skin looking great when the weather gets cold. Here are a few tips on how to take care of your skin outside your usual skin care routine.
1. Use a lip treatment
It takes mere seconds for lips to dry out in the winter, so be sure you always have a hydrating lip treatment on hand. And if you’re out and about and find yourself without hand lotion, a botanical lip balm can always double for it in a pinch!
2. Turn on your humidifier
Nothing will dry out the skin or the sinuses like a really dry room, especially when the heating system is cranked up high. Use a humidifier by your bed, and you’ll likely find your skin and your air passages feel a lot better in the morning. If you don’t have a humidifier, or don’t want to invest in one, keep pots of water on the radiators for a DIY version.
3. Make sure you’re moisturizing the skin on your body
Nothing is less comfortable than dry, cracked winter skin. Make sure you have a good body moisturizer and start using it before skin gets cracked, so you’re not irritating already irritated skin.
4. Don’t dry off completely
When you get out of the shower, just pat down the skin and then apply moisturizer, locking in extra hydration into your skin.
5. Limit physical exfoliation
Since physical exfoliation sometimes involves rubbing the skin and can cause irritation to dry skin, it’s always a good idea to limit how often you exfoliate physically in any kind of extreme weather.
If you do find that you need to exfoliate your body, use a scrub that includes an oil to immediately nourish your skin. For your face, avoid scrubs altogether and stick with a liquid exfoliant.
6. Lower the inside temperature
We often want to crank up the thermostat when we start to feel the first little chill in the air, but heat can really dry out your skin. A better option—on a couple of levels—is to throw on a few extra sweaters, put on your slippers, and get under some blankets.
7. Limit shower time and/or take cooler showers
It sounds counterintuitive to take cooler showers in the winter, but hot water can really exacerbate dry, cracked skin. If you can, try to keep your shower temps warm, but not excessively so.
8. Carry your toner with you
We know what you’re thinking—isn’t that what you’re supposed to do in the summer? Yes, it is, but what’s good for the goose is good for the gander, which is another way of saying that a good toner that locks in hydration is key in the dry winter months as well.
9. Put on an extra layer of moisturizer before you go out
Prevention is key, so you can apply a little extra moisturizer before you go out in the cold to prevent skin from becoming cracked and dry to begin with.
10. Wear sunscreen
We know what you’re thinking: why would I wear sunscreen in the winter? Believe it or not, the sun’s rays can still be incredibly strong—and damaging—in the winter, especially if they’re reflecting off snow or even ice. A layer of sunscreen is a good idea for anyone spending a lot of time outside, no matter what the season.
Ingredients to Incorporate into Your Winter Skin Care Routine
Changing your winter skin care routine really doesn’t have to be all that elaborate. One easy way to accomplish that is to have a quick look at your skin care products and make sure they’re full of clean, botanical ingredients that properly hydrate and moisturize the skin.
Here are some ingredients you should think about incorporating into your winter skin care routine:
- Hyaluronic acid helps hydrate your skin by drawing water to the skin and locking it in. H2 Oh Yeah features hyaluronic acid for deep, long lasting hydration that is 100% necessary during the winter.
- Glycerin essentially takes the moisture you already have in your skin and brings it to the surface to help keep skin hydrated.
- Rose Hydrosol is the colloidal suspension of rose oil in water, rose hydrosol is a pleasantly aromatic way to hydrate your skin, which is why we’ve included it in our Rose and Shine toner.
- Aloe vera is a soothing, hydrating ingredient that feels so good on dry, cracked winter skin. You will find it in many of our products, including Just Dew It hydrating serum.
- Lactic acid is an extraordinarily gentle exfoliant, making it a perfect exfoliant for the winter.
- Coconut oil is a great moisturizer with antioxidant properties that helps protect skin from environmental stressors. Our One Lip Wonder lip treatment employs coconut oil to protect your lips against dryness.
- Green tea leaf extract is full of antioxidants and vitamin E and is known for its hydrating properties. It can be found in our Eyes Eyes Baby eye cream.
- Chamomile is soothing to the skin and full of antioxidants to help fight environmental stressors.
- Jojoba oil is excellent for moisturizing all skin types. That is why we have included it in all of our face creams, including H2 Oh Yeah hydrating moisturizer.
Winter Skin Care Routines for Different Skin Types
Anytime the weather changes, your skin is going to change as well. In the winter, most people find their skin becomes drier (even those with oily skin). We have a few suggestions to keep your skin happy and looking great in the winter no matter what your skin type.
Winter Skin Care for Dry Skin
The best way to combat the itchy, extra dry, flaky skin that is common during the winter months for those with genetically dry skin is by keeping your skin as moisturized and as hydrated as you possibly can. The ideal moisturizer will not only add moisture and hydration, but help lock it into your skin. And don’t worry about overdoing it—as long as you’re applying it on clean skin and your skin will absorb it, a few extra applications is fine, so keep it with you when you’re out and about!
Winter Skin Care for Oily Skin
Even those with oily skin might experience some dryness in the winter (in fact, you might feel as if your skin is closer to combination skin for a few months out of the year), so we recommend adding a hydrating serum to your daily routine, morning and evening. Also, be sure you’re using a face cream that is made for all skin types and will keep your skin both hydrated and balanced.
Winter Skin Care for Combination Skin
Chances are, your skin probably tends to be on the drier side during the winter, so be sure you’re hydrating as much as possible with both moisturizer and eye cream. If you’re like most with combination skin, you may find that your skin is a little less oily when it’s dry out. Adding a hydrating serum or using a richer moisturizer during the winter will keep your skin balanced.
Winter Skin Care for Your 20s and 30s
Even with youth on your side, the dry winter air makes you just as susceptible as anyone else to dry, uncomfortable skin in the winter. Be sure to include a hydrating moisturizer that replenishes both moisture and hydration to your skin, as well as an eye cream to make sure the skin around your eyes isn’t neglected.
Anti-Aging Winter Skin Care
As we age, our skin tends to be more on the dry side. To keep your skin looking youthful during the winter, it’s best to keep it as hydrated and moisturized as possible. This means investing time in your skin with a thorough skincare routine. A hydrating toner, serum, eye cream and moisturizer will all be necessary – and your winter BFFs.
It’s also not a terrible idea to apply an extra layer of moisturizer at night and just let it absorb while you sleep (just make sure you use an old pillow case because it WILL get on anything it touches). And as long as you’re not wearing make-up, feel free to apply more regularly, as needed.
Winter Skin Care for Sensitive Skin
Strangely enough, sensitive skin acts in very similar ways during both summer and winter; it usually becomes even more sensitive in extreme weather. Rude. If you have sensitive skin, make sure you don’t do anything to exacerbate the conditions like physical exfoliation (which literally involves chafing the skin) or introducing products with harsh chemicals.
Winter Skin Care for Dull Skin
To give skin back its glow, be sure to exfoliate with a gentle, chemical exfoliant (such as glycolic acid or lactic acid.) If your skin is dry, once a week during the winter is plenty. Always follow up with a rich moisturizer.
Using a vitamin C serum will also help brighten the skin and restore a healthy glow.
Whether you’re hitting the slopes or making snow angels, these suggestions on how to adjust your winter skin care routine will help you keep your skin looking and feeling fresh.