During the winter, it is all too easy to forget two critical skin care routines – sunscreen and moisturizing. But your skin -- face, hands and body – needs protection now more than ever. Without it, skin can become dry, itchy, red, flaky or even cracked – uncomfortable, to say the least, and not the look you want to present to the world.
No worries, though, we have winter skin tips that will banish your dry skin.
During the summertime we sweat which is a form of hydration for the skin. So during warm weather we advise our patients to use a thinner consistency moisturizer that promotes hydration and antiaging without clogging the pores. During the winter it is cold and humidity is low, causing skin to lose moisture. While we wouldn’t normally recommend skin products that are “thick and greasy,” switching to a richer emollient during the winter months will help prevent dry, flaky skin.
What to Do
Moisturizers work by re-hydrating the surface skin and forming a seal that helps retain moisture. Typically, these products contain humectants to attract moisture to the cells, ingredients such as petrolatum or lanolin that help seal in moisture, and emollients that fill in tiny spaces between skin cells to produce a smoother, plumper surface appearance. Here at Eterna Cosmetic Surgery, we especially like Bio Cream Firm as a hand cream because it both moisturizes and helps prevent signs of aging.
Moisturizer should be applied at least twice daily on clean, dry skin after washing your face in the morning and the afternoon. For hands, use moisturizer right after washing. And for the body, apply moisturizer immediately after you bathe or shower, to lock in maximum moisture.
Sunscreen can be moisturizing however that is not the main function. Sunscreen should be applied in the morning daily to block UVA/UVB rays to prevent sun damage, sun spots, fine lines and wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, and overall signs of aging.
You can take preventative actions in addition to moisturizing regularly:
- Take shorter baths or showers and avoid hot water that strips away moisture. Perfumed or deodorant soaps can also dry skin.
- Don’t scrub your skin as you wash, and pat gently with a towel to dry off.
- Consider using a humidifier (about 60% is a good setting).
- Don’t scratch that itchy skin! If applying moisturizer isn’t enough to relieve the itch, try using a cold compress.
- If wool or other fibers irritate your skin, don’t wear them.
Repairing Winter Dry Skin
The skin becomes itchy due to dryness. If still irritated or itchy, try adding a hydrating serum such as Hyalis hydrating serum from NeoCutis prior to your normal moisturizer. If the skin is irritated and dry on a regular basis, try applying Aftercare soothing cream by NeoCutis prior to your normal moisturizer. This helps to reduce redness, sensitivity, and itchiness.
Get Professional Advice and Products
We can make general recommendations about how to keep skin moisturized in winter, but every person’s skin is different. For example, men typically have thicker skin than women and may not require such heavy moisturizers. Teens and young adults who suffer from oily skin should receive a skin evaluation to determine the suitable moisturizer in order to avoid further clogging the pores.
There’s no need to guess what is best for you, though. Scheduling a personal consultation will allow our Eterna Cosmetic Surgery skin care pros to evaluate your skin and then make recommendations that match your age and lifestyle. We also offer a broad selection of medical grade skin care products, including the ones mentioned above, so you can be sure you’re using the best quality products to achieve the best quality results.