Long Life and Health
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Skincare Tips for Winter Weather

It’s the holiday season, and you know what that means: Cooler weather, festive decorations, shopping lists, and dry skin. Wait, what? Yep – just in case it slipped your mind in the midst of preparing for the upcoming festivities, don’t forget to add cold weather considerations to your skincare routine.

Why does skin get drier in the winter? 

The moisture in your skin evaporates more quickly when exposed to cold, dry air outside. These conditions happen every winter in the Northern Hemisphere. In addition to environmental factors, people heat their houses with furnaces or wood heat, which further dries out the air inside their homes and worsens the dry skin issue. 

What are the symptoms of dry skin? 

  • Itchiness
  • White, flaky patches
  • Redness, often due to itching 
  • Scaly appearance
  • Uncomfortable tightness of the skin 

A person may experience one or more of these symptoms. Duration is usually temporary and can be treated with over the counter medicines. 

Treatment options

Applying lotion to the affected area is typically the first line of defense against dry skin. If you have sensitive skin, look for lotion that doesn’t contain any perfumes or scents, which can cause irritation. Brands that offer longtime trusted results include Aveeno, Eucerin, and Neutrogena. 

Other commonly used treatments include petroleum jelly or mineral oil. Apply lotion or oil immediately after bathing and patting skin dry with a towel to lock in moisture before it evaporates. 

Preventive measures 

As with most health conditions, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of petroleum jelly. Wait, that’s not quite how that saying goes. Anyway, heading off dry skin before it comes an itchy issue is always a good idea. Here are a few methods to keep your skin healthy all winter long.

  • Shower or bathe with warm water, not hot. We tend to turn up the heat in the bathtub when the weather turns cold, but hot water further dries out skin by pulling more moisture from it. Try to keep the water temperature comfortably warm when showering.
  • Choose your soap carefully. Wash with cleansers that are free of fragrances to lessen the chance of irritating your skin. Don’t use toners, astringents, or other alcohol-based products on your skin. 
  • Exfoliate gently. Love your pumice stone? Me, too. But we should go easy on the harsh scrubbing to prevent irritating or thickening already stressed-out skin.
  • Shave smart. If you’re not embracing No Shave November, remember to shave properly during the winter months. Shaving scrapes off dead skin cells and natural oils, so always use a shaving gel or cream. Change razor blades often to keep them sharp. Shave during or immediately after bathing when the hairs are soft and pliable. 

Wintertime is fun time 

You can enjoy all the holiday season has to offer if you take a few minutes to prepare yourself to care for your skin. So grab that fragrance-free lotion, pour some pumpkin spice in your coffee cup, and get ready to deck the halls! 

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