As the nights start drawing in, chances are it's more than just your body clock that's being thrown off. Tight skin. rough skin, chapped lips.... Say hello to winter.
Here is our complete guide to winter skincare.
Too much change isn't always a good thing
I would not recommend a complete overhaul of all products due to a change in seasons - There is no real need for it. I think the most important thing is to develop an awareness and understanding of your own skin and how it responds to different environments and products, and make simple changes in the environ,ent. Being aware of potentially irritating ingredients is important too, such as retinoids, exfoliating acids and vitamin C.
2. You still need SPF
Just because it is winter, it doesn't mean you should put away your sunscreen. Whilst there is less UVB around in winter, levels of UVA (or UV ageing as it is known in the dermatology world, are still significant enough to age our skin. I advocate using a sunscreen that specifically has a high UVA rating all year round to protect your skin. A UVB is the wavelength that stimulates vitamin D production, levels can drop in the winter months and if necessary we can supplement with an oral vitamin D3 supplement.
3. Consider professional skin treatments
Winter is a great time for skin treatments. We always worry about peels and laser treatments in the summer months. With sun exposure before or after such procedures there is a higher risk of unwanted post inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Autumn and winter therefore represents as opportunity. I would however suggest planning ahead, o make sure your skin has time to settle and be at its peak for party season. A course of micro needling can help to stimulate new collagen and restore skin glow. Likewise, rather than waiting for summer, now is the time to start tackling unwanted hair with a course.
4. Keep hydrated
Your skin will naturally become drier and often more sensitive with the onset of colder weather and central heating. Make sure you keep yourself hydrated during the day; swap your coffee for green tea which has great antioxidant effects. Gentle cleansing is a must; you need your skin barrier to be as healthy as possible so that it can retain vital moisture. As a rule of thumb, if your skin feels tight after washing it is likely that the cleanser you are using has disrupted your skin barrier. Skin should be calm and hydrated after cleansing. If you are immediately reaching for your moisturiser you may want to consider a more gentle cleanser.
5. Pay extra attention to sensitive skin
Those with sensitive skin may experience heightened or more significant cold or wind sensation than those without. Although everybody's reasons for sensitivity is different some research shows and suggests that one factor may be that people literally have different degrees of sensitivity in the nerve fibres connecting our skin to our brains. Using a richer or more soothing moisturiser can help balance things out. I recommend seeking out ingredients that calm skin which experiences irritability.
6. Tweak your daily skincare routine
If you are having to apply moisturiser during the day, it is likely your skin routine needs tweaking. If you're using a lotion, try swapping it for a cream, massaging into your skin for 30 seconds to maximise its effects.
7. Layer up at bedtime
My number one tip is to embrace using a more occlusive, rich product, especially for the evening routine, which can help to maintain the skin barrier and prevent the need for prescribed treatments. Similarly, products marketed as 'recovery masks' often contain rich ingredients that are great for moisturising. Although petrolatum and mineral oil have some bad press over the years, it is really quite undeserved and they are a key part of a dermatologists arsenal in managing many skin conditions, particularly dry skin. The occlusive effect of such ingredients essentially shields the skin and gives it time to repair itself or maintain its natural barrier function.
8. Book in for a facial
Winter skin is often dull, so I recommend a professional facial every 4 weeks. That is how long it takes your skin to move through the full life circle of skin cell growth, so I often advise people to opt for a superficial treatment such as a peel or exfoliating treatment such as our BeautyLab Glycolic Peel treatment, in order to slough off dead skin and allow better absorption of active topical skincare. Regular facials will help to keep your skin clean, clear and hydrated while maximising your everyday skin care regime too.
9. Protecting lips from 'lick eczema'
Licking sore lips 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, can irritate dry lips.
10. Prevent dry, chapped lips
Hands are very high risk for becoming chapped and sore in the winter. Avoid baby wipes as they can contain preservatives that trigger hand eczema, and for everyone to wear gloves when washing. At night apply a rich layer of hand cream under cotton gloves. After a few nights the skin barrier will start to heal and the difference will be amazing.
11. Monitor scaly skin for dermatitis
If you notice scaly skin around your nose and eyebrows in winter, you may be developing dermatitis thought to be exacerbated by yeast. Cold winter weather is also known to trigger it.
12. Consider a foot peel
The feet often become drier and cracked when the temperature drops. Exfoliating frequently and applying an effective moisturiser always heros, but for many there just isnt enough hours in the day to do so. This is where a professional foot peel comes in. These are amazing treatments and is in the essence of a chemical peel for the feet.
13. Use bath time to hydrate
Baths are a gift to dry winter skin. Not only do they provide the all important relaxation to switch off those skin damaging stress hormones, but baths are a marvellous opportunity to hydrate the skin. If you suffer with eczema, oils can hydrate skin and reduce itching.
14. Kick your body care routine up a notch.
In winter a common site for dryness is the lower legs. So called 'chicken skin' or keratosis pilaris (KP) may also become more noticeable around this time of year due to dryness and associated inflammation. Those with KP or who wish to gently exfoliate while moisturising, choose a body lotion that's formulated with lactic acid.
15. Don't drink yourself dry
Research has shown that alcohol can increase inflammation in the skin and worsen many skin diseases, such as psoriasis, eczema and rosacea. It has a dehydrating effect on the body in general and also disturbs sleep which is important for skin regeneration and general skin health. This disruption of our body's natural equilibrium may lead to our skin looking dull and tired. Limiting the amount of alcohol consumed in one day, and remembering to drink water to maintain general hydration.
For more advise, or a consultation on your skin care needs and or concerns feel free to contact us for a FREE consultation.
Moroccan Rose has a full comprehensive list of skin care treatments for face and body.
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Moroccan Rose Beauty Studio
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