Dry skin is sensitive and a hassle to take care of year-round but the cold and dry winter air can irritate dry skin even more. Indoor heat is another factor that can contribute to skin dryness during winter. And so is hot water. Thus, a hot shower and spending some time near a roaring fire will help you warm yourself after you spend time outdoors but your skin won’t be so happy.
To combat irritation, redness, and itchiness, you have to find ways to retain your skin’s natural moisturize. It’s important to make sure that your skin is not stripped of its natural oils so avoid any direct source of heat and hot water.
You should also adjust your daily beauty routine to give your skin the extra tender loving care it needs during the cold months. Plus, there are a few changes you can make in your home to ensure that your skin retains its natural moisturize.
Without further ado, here are a few tips to take care of dry skin during winter:
Lower The Thermostat
If you’re the type of person who loves to wear t-shirts all the time, cranking up the heat during winter is probably second nature for you. But, as previously mentioned, central heating, and indoor heating in general, can dry up your skin.
We’re not saying you should freeze but you can lower the thermostat a bit and wear a comfortable hoodie indoors to maintain healthy skin.
Use A Humidifier
Winter is the season when most of us spend a lot of time indoors so we have to add moisture to the dry air if we don’t want to deal with dry, irritated, and sensitive skin. The best way to do it? Run a humidifier! Humidifiers are great because they add moisture to the air and help keep the skin hydrated.
Limit Shower Time
Long, steamy showers are so amazing and relaxing during winter days. But they are not so great for dry skin. Here you have two options – you can either opt for a quick hot shower or a longer one with lukewarm water. Better yet, alternate so you don’t miss out on those amazing hot showers.
However, if you have very dry and sensitive skin, dermatologists recommend a quick 5-10 minutes shower with lukewarm water.
How do you know when the water is too hot? As a rule of thumb, if your skin turns red, the water is too hot.
Eat Healthy And Stay Hydrated
Before we’re going to discuss a few ways to hydrate the skin from the outside, we have to mention the importance of eating healthy and drinking enough water. Healthy foods and proper hydration are essential. Sometimes, natural supplements like omega-3 or omega-6 can help prevent or treat dry skin but make sure you consult with your doctor first.
Opt For Gentle Cleansers
Itchy, dry skin gets worse if you’re using the wrong cleansers. Generally speaking, regular bar soaps and cleansing gels contain fragrance, sulfates, and other irritating and drying ingredients. Replace them with natural cleansers that are fragrance-free. Check the label to be sure the cleansers don’t contain sulfates and fragrance.
Also, be sure you opt for cleansers that are labeled as fragrance-free, not as unscented, as unscented products can still contain artificial fragrance. On the other hand, some natural cleansers can be scented because fruits, flowers, and other similar ingredients are naturally scented.
You can also opt for cream-based cleansers that are way gentler than soap bars and other drying cleansers.
Moisturize Your Skin
No matter how much you’re trying to maintain your skin’s natural moisture, moisturizing is a daily task you cannot skip. Especially if you have dry, itchy skin. Skip the astringent toners and all the beauty products that contain drying alcohols. Opt for skincare products that contain fatty alcohol or no alcohol at all.
You should look for beauty products that contain hydrating ingredients, such as glycerin, hyaluronic acid, petrolatum, and lactic acid. Use a richer moisturizer, hand cream, lip balm, and body lotions that nourish and hydrate the skin.
Another important tip – moisturize often! Using a moisturizer once per day is not enough during wintertime. Use a moisturizing face cream at least twice per day. We would also recommend using moisturizing face masks at least 2-3 times per week. You can even use moisturizing face masks daily if they are made with ingredients that are ok for daily use, such as hyaluronic acid.
If you spend time outdoors, you have to protect your hands. Use gloves to keep your hands warm and apply hand cream after washing your hands.
Don’t Skip The Sunscreen
You may think you don’t need sunscreen during winter days but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Especially during white winters. Snow reflects the sun’s rays so it may be cold outside but the risk of developing skin cancer is still there so don’t skip the sunscreen. Not to mention that UV rays can penetrate clouds so you’re not protected during darker days either. Furthermore, nowadays, there numerous types of sunscreens on the market so you can find one with hydrating properties to protect and nourish your skin at the same time.
Wear Soft Clothing
There’s nothing more annoying than a sweater that irritates your skin. But wearing clothing that causes itching is not only annoying but also bad for dry skin. A wool sweater may keep you warm but if it causes itchiness and irritation, you should avoid it. Or wear it over some light and soft layers. Cotton tops are great as base layers because they are soft and comfy. Plus, they prevent rough clothing from directly touching your skin.
Lastly, make sure you change clothes immediately if they get wet. Wet clothes can cause even more itchiness and irritation so when your pants, socks, or gloves become wet, change them ASAP.
Overcoming the drying effects of cold air is a bit of a struggle but, with all these tips for taking care of dry skin during winter, you should be able to avoid or get rid of dryness, irritation, redness, and any discomfort or skin irritation.