There’s no denying that Winter in the Midwest can be beautiful. But for many people, the obstacles of Winter extend far beyond icy roads and school closings. Recent statistics show that over 81 million people are affected by itchy, flaky and dry skin between November and March.
“I tell my patients that the moment they turn on their indoor heating in the Fall that they should expect their skin’s condition to change,” say Cyndi, a Licensed Esthetician with Face Cosmetic Skincare. “Whether you have electric heat or a wood burning stove, heat will zap the moisture out of the air, and your skin will immediately begin to respond by growing dryer and tighter,” she continues. “Luckily, there is a lot we can do to combat dry, Winter skin with the services and products we offer at our clinics to the extent that you may have your best skin of the year during Winter! Here are some of the top tips we regularly share with our patients.”
1. Partner with a Skincare Expert
Did you know that there is a difference between dehydrated skin and dry skin and that you can suffer from BOTH at the same time? Partnering with a licensed esthetician who can correctly identify your skin’s condition and prescribe customized products that work can go miles in alleviating compromised Winter skin. It may be tempting to head to the drug store and purchase the thickest moisturizer you can find, but if your skin is dehydrated or inflamed a product like this will offer little to no relief and may actually increase your discomfort!
2. Make Friends with Your Moisturizer
You may have found your ideal moisturizer for Spring and Summer that has the perfect gel-like consistency, but that doesn’t mean this product will fit the bill in Winter!
“Most of my patients step up to a richer, more emollient moisturizer in the Fall and Winter that not only balances and hydrates their skin, but also seals in moisture,” explains Cyndi. “I even work with patients who will incorporate more restorative serums and oils under, into or on top of their moisturizer for extra reinforcement,” she continues. “It’s important to choose the right kind of hydration to ensure you’re not adding oil to skin that is simply thirsty, as this can lead to breakouts and skin congestion, but that’s exactly what your licensed esthetician is there for! We take the guesswork out of selecting what is right for your skin and will get your results.”
3. Hydrate from the Inside Out
No matter what the season is, you can expect to hear “Drink More Water” from your licensed esthetician. It’s not that drinking a gallon of water a day will magically transform your skin, but it will help your skin function better, especially if it’s dehydrated, or lacking water. As your body’s largest organ, your skin is the last organ to reap the benefits of what you eat or drink, so stepping up your water intake in the dry, Winter months can make your skin’s life more comfortable.
4. Hook Up with a Humidifier
If central heating can dry out your eyes, hair and nasal passages, think of what it’s doing to your skin! Compensate the moisture loss in the air with a humidifier. Better yet, sleep with a humidifier close to your bed so your skin is saturated with hydration while you sleep and your skin is in repair mode.
5. Strategize Your Skincare
When you think of Winter skincare, many of us only think of moisturizing, but other steps and ingredients in our skincare regimen can have a significant impact on our skin’s health during the Winter months.
“Right around Fall is a great time to evaluate your skin care regimen with a licensed esthetician and make plans for Winter,” says Cyndi. “This may include things like switching from a clay-based mask to a more emollient and restorative mask, or incorporating a hydrating toner to mist onto your skin throughout the day,” she continues. “One of the key elements that many people forget about is proper exfoliation. You need to get the old, dull skin out of the way so your moisturizer can do its job correctly. My favorite Winter treatment is our HydraFacial treatment because it not only removes all of that flakey Winter skin, it also infuses your skin with a medley of healing botanicals and hydrating humectants!”
6. Break Up with Your Bathtub
A long soak in a hot bath can do wonders for your stress levels, but it can also wreak havoc on dry, itchy Winter skin. Hot water can break down the lipid barriers on your skin’s surface and cause you to lose moisture. Add olive oil to your tub time instead of fragrance laden bubble baths and make sure to slather on the moisturizer immediately after stepping out of the tub to seal in hydration.
7. Stay Committed to Your Sunscreen
Did you know that you could actually get MORE UV damage in the Winter than the Summer? This occurs because many people decide to ditch the sun protection step of their skincare regimen as soon as the leaves begin to turn in the Fall. The truth is, Winter sun combined with snow glare can cause significant damage to your skin. Make sure to protect your skin just as you would in the Summer months!
Want to win the war on Winter skin? Schedule a complimentary consultation with a Face Cosmetic Skincare licensed esthetician to identify your skin condition and discuss products and treatments to keep your skin balanced, hydrated and glowing all Winter long! Call (651) 632-9700 to schedule.