Winter can do a number on your skin. When the winter winds blow, it can feel like there’s no escape from the chilly conditions outside that make your skin feel raw. A combination of cold, dry air can leave your skin itchy, red and irritated. And it’s no better indoors with the heat zapping away moisture from the air and drying out your skin. The good news is, we have a few tips up our sleeves to combat dry winter skin and retain its natural moisture, so you can keep your skin soft and supple during the cool season.
Here are 5 easy changes to your everyday routine to improve winter skin:
1. Make your home winter skin friendly
Try to change your habit of cranking up the heater when it’s cold outside. The heat can make the air in your house even drier. Set the thermostat to a comfortable setting and layer up with warm clothing instead. Invest in a humidifier to help keep your skin hydrated, as it will add moisture to the dry winter air. Place it in the room you spend the most time in, including your bedroom.
2. Change up your shower routine
Taking a long, steamy hot shower may feel like a great idea at the time, but the hot water can dry out your skin by stripping its natural oils. It isn’t easy, but your skin will be much better in a 5-10 minute lukewarm shower or bath. If the idea of a cold shower is unbearable, at the very least you can choose a soap, moisturiser and cleanser that doesn’t irritate your skin, and aim to use less of the product overall so you’re not lathering it all across your body. Incorporating emu oil into your shower routine can help further moisturise and nourish your dry, chapped winter skin.
3. Modify your skincare regimen
During the cooler season, opt for creamier, thicker cleaners and moisturisers, and reduce the amount of toners and astringents you apply to your face. Many astringents contain alcohol which can further dry out and itch your skin. Before bed, use a richer moisturiser on your face so your skin can fully absorb the nutrients and repair and restore hydration overnight. In the morning, apply moisturiser again to refresh and renew the skin for the day. Throughout the day, apply a rich cream to revive and nourish your hands as they’re constantly exposed to the elements and can become dry and cracked. The obvious tell-tale sign of winter is dry, chapped lips. Glossing your lips with pure emu oil throughout the day is a natural way to keep your lips supple (it’s also totally safe to ingest and is actually good for your overall health!). Last but certainly not least, don’t be fooled by dark dreary grey days in winter. The sun’s harmful UV rays can filter through clouds and cause damage to your skin. Applying pure emu oil to your skin can help add an extra layer of sun production.
4. Remember to eat well and stay hydrated
Sometimes when your skin is very dry in winter, it can be improved by staying well hydrated and increasing your intake of foods or supplements that contain Omega 3 or Omega 6 fatty acids (such as fish oil, flaxseed oil and emu oil). After all, there’s nothing more effective than nourishing your skin from the inside out. If you’re not keen on the idea of eating these foods and you’re sick of drinking boring water, consider adding sliced fruits to a big water bottle and a few drops of emu oil to infuse the water with a yummy fruity flavour. This will motivate you to drink more h20 and get the double benefit of Omega 3 & 6 with every sip!
5. Dress accordingly to your skin’s needs
Wear appropriate, comfortable clothing to help reduce aggravating your dry winter skin. Rougher fabrics such as wool can cause skin itching and irritation if it directly rubs against your skin. Instead, opt for light layers made from soft and breathable materials – such as silk and cotton – as a base layer, and then add your thicker clothes over the top.