Top 5 Foolproof Tips to Keep Your Skin at Peak Health This Winter
Most people would associate damaging sun during the summer months as the most harmful time of year for their skin. But, on the contrary, it’s actually winter when your face, hands and feet can suffer from severe dryness, and sometimes even itchiness, cracking and inflammation. Between the diverse weather patterns of wind, rain, sun and frosty air, and the sudden changes in temperature from outside to the heated indoors, winter can really be a whirlwind of trouble for your skin…
But don’t worry, because the expert skincare specialists at Nuriss are here to share their insider knowledge about how to best get through the winter with your skin not only intact, but glowing!
Use a humidifier
Unfortunately, it’s not realistic to avoid heating systems during an English winter. It would make for a very uncomfortable, freezing few months if you banned the thermostat in your home! Central heating systems, fires and fan heaters all suck the moisture out of the house and your skin, which can cause shrivelled cells and even wrinkles in the long run. But, even turning it down and using a few more blankets, hot water bottles and jumpers will help lessen the drying effects of the heating system on your skin. You can also plug in a humidifier, which will add moisture back into the air, and back into your skin!
Avoid superhot baths and showers
There’s nothing better than jumping into a steaming hot bath or shower at the end of a cold wintery day, especially when you feel absolutely chilled to the core. And, if your house or flat is not warm and toasty, it can be equally difficult to muster the willpower to get out of the steamy water. But it’s important to be aware that the hot water is stripping away essential oils from your skin, which, in some ways is a good thing, because you are also stripping away the trapped dirt and odour from the day, but the body’s important moisture is also escaping, which can cause redness, itching and dryness. If you have experienced this, try turning the water temperature down slightly and shortening the length of time you spend in the shower or bath. If you do enjoy long baths, try adding a gentle moisturising bath cream into the water to help replenish your skin.
Tip: After a shower, pat your skin dry and moisturise straight away while it’s still warm and your pores are still open. This will ensure you maximise the benefits of your moisturiser and absorb the largest amount possible!
Use the right moisturiser (and use it properly!)
Your spring or summer moisturiser might not cut it during the winter months. Depending on your skin type, it might be beneficial to switch from a water-based solution to an oil-based ointment to help protect your skin against harsh weather conditions. Once you have a good quality moisturiser that works for you this winter, it is equally important to make sure you’re applying it right. The best time to apply it is straight after a warm shower or bath when your pores are open and your skin is still slightly damp. Also, don’t forget to use sunscreen. Yes, you read that correctly. Sunscreen is for 365 days of the year, not just for summer! Simply walking to work will expose your skin to harmful UV rays, which can prevent it from holding onto its moisture, even if you can’t feel the sun’s heat.
Tip: Check out skincare specialist and Nuriss founder Dr Anita Sturnham’s top tips for dry skin.
Show your hands and feet some love!
These extremities can suffer the most in bitter cold weather. The fingers and toes are often the first to go numb when exposed to the winter air, and the constant temperature change from outdoors to indoors can result in itchiness, redness and cracking of the skin. The best way to avoid these problems this winter is to always wear gloves and thick socks when heading outside, and make sure to avoid getting them wet by wearing waterproof shoes. If your socks do become wet, it can irritate the skin on your feet and cause itching, cracking, sores and even eczema – especially if you are prone to the condition, or have sensitive skin.
Tip: Don’t ignore your feet in the winter just because people won’t see them! They need greasing up with a strong lotion, preferably containing glycerine. You can also use an exfoliator to get rid of dead skin, which will help the lotion absorb deeper into the skin.
Eat for your skin
One of the most important things you can do to keep your skin healthy all year round is to eat and drink food that will nourish and hydrate it. It can be easy to forget to keep your fluids up in the cold weather because you might not feel thirsty, so always be aware, and make sure you’re drinking enough water. Similarly, we tend to opt for hearty, warm meals in the winter, but it’s also important to make sure you’re eating plenty of fruits and vegetables to keep your skin moist and healthy.
Nuriss is a leading skincare clinic in the heart of London, offering a specialist range of medically-designed products for all skin types.