Dry skin, cracked knuckles and chapped lips? The true joys of winter, that can wreak havoc on our bodies from head-to-toe.
Think About SPF
Just because it's cold outside, it doesn’t mean we can put away the suncream just yet. Whilst levels of UVB are lower in winter, levels of UVA (or UV-ageing) are still at significant enough levels to age our skin prematurely.A cream with a high UVA rating for use all year round works wonders if you want to protect your skin from its ageing effects. As UVB is the wavelength that stimulates vitamin D production, levels can drop in the winter months and if necessary we can supplement with oral vitamin D3.
Skin can become drier and often more sensitive with the onset of colder weather and our overuse of central heating. An essential remedy is to keep hydrated during the day, swap your coffee for green tea which has great anti-oxidant effects is one example. Also, as we head ever closer to Christmas we begin to imbibe with alcohol far more regularly, so adding an extra few glasses of water a day is a must. Gentle cleansing is also a good habit, you need your skins barrier to be as healthy as possible so that it can retain its own vital moisturiser. As a general rule, if your skin feels tight after washing it is likely that the cleanser you are using has disrupted your skin barrier. Your skin should feel calm and hydrated after washing, if you are reaching immediately for your moisturiser you may want to consider a gentler cleanser.
Preventing ‘lick eczema’!
Licking sore lips is a bad habit we have all fallen foul of over the years. Sadly it will only exacerbate dryness and can cause what is referred to as ‘lick eczema’. Make sure your lips are sealed with an effective ointment at all times, particularly before eating and drinking as some foods like tomatoes and citrus especially can seriously irritate chapped lips. If you are outdoors for a great amount of time, for example skiing, it's crucial to remember your lips are vulnerable to sun burn. Zinc oxide is a fantastic physical sunscreen and will help to reflect the UV away from the skin of your face and lips.
Keeping An Eye On Dry Facial Skin
Winter skin can often look and feel very dull, so a quality daily moisturiser used consistently will reap great benefits for skins health. Supermarkets often boast about how their own brand creams are on a par with higher-end creations, yet many own-brands overlook key essential ingredients and the broad spectrum of nutrients for us to truly benefit from them. You can even pair this daily ritual with more professional treatments.Regular facials will help to keep your skin clean, clear and hydrated whilst maximising your everyday skincare regime too.
Use bath time to hydrate
Baths are a truly luxurious gift to our dry winter-worn skin. Not only do they provide the all-important relaxation to switch off our skin damaging stress hormones; baths are a marvellous opportunity to hydrate skin. Additions of bath oils and gels can reinvigorate our dermal layers, while the warmth encourages pores to open and we can wash away all the winter grime and leave ourselves warm, hydrated and happy.