As winter starts to approach, it’s time to begin thinking about ways to best prepare your skin for the chilly temps it’s about to face. To ensure you get everything your skin needs when seasons change, here are six tips on how to prepare your skin for winter.
1. Invest in a super-hydrating moisturiser
During summer, the air is usually more humid, meaning that a light lotion is all your skin needs to remain hydrated all day long. However, once winter sets it and air becomes drier, a lotion is not going to be enough to give your skin the moisture it needs. Instead, you should use a thicker moisturiser, and preferably one that has the following ingredients:
- Olive oil
- Almond oil
- Shea butter
- Grapeseed oil
You might be wondering why you need these ingredients.
First off, they are so good for your skin. They help create a stronger natural barrier against the harsh winds, dry air and cold temperatures. This prevents moisture from escaping from your skin while keeping any germs and bacteria at bay.
2. Don’t forget to use a cleanser
Cleansers are important when it comes to protecting your skin during winter. The only downside is that many people use cleansers with the wrong pH.
To understand this more closely, you first need to know what pH means:
pH is an acronym for potential hydrogen, and in essence, refers to the acidic/alkaline nature of something. In this case, would be your skin.
Certain ingredients such as vinegar are acidic, while others such as milk of magnesia are alkaline. Combining alkaline and acidic substances helps them balance each other out.
Your skin has an ideal pH of about 5.5. If it becomes too alkaline, it dries out. If it becomes too acidic, it breaks out and causes irritation.
So, how do cleansers help your skin during winter?
Well, cleansers contain ingredients that help keep your skin clean. However, most cleansers are acidic, and this can have an impact on your skin.
The best way to ensure you have a cleanser that will effectively work to help your skin during winter is by avoiding ingredients such as sodium lauryl sulphate, triclosan and amino fruit acids. You can even consider buying an electric cleansing brush for your face.
3. Drink more water, more frequently
When it comes to skincare, people always place a lot of emphasis on topical treatments. But it’s equally important to take a holistic approach to skincare, meaning you should take care of your skin from the inside out.
Your skin desperately needs extra hydration during winter, making it mandatory to drink a lot of water every day.
But what if you don’t really like drinking water during colder months?
Well, you can still hydrate by drinking warm, herbal teas including:
- Chamomile tea
- Green tea
- Dandelion tea
Research shows that a cuppa of tea hydrates the body the same way water does, making this the best alternative to hydration during winter months.
4. Take shorter showers
The very things that make you feel warmer during winter, such as long, hot showers, can actually strip your skin of moisture making it even more dry and brittle.
For this reason, you should take shorter, lukewarm showers then pat your skin lightly using a towel. Follow this with a thick layer of moisturiser from head to toe.
And if you can afford, opt for shower gels instead of soap for that extra skin enrichment. Your skin will be cleaner plus the shower gel adds more moisture to it.
5. Lather up on sunscreen
Most people think because it’s winter they don’t have to use sunscreen. However, it doesn’t matter whether the sun is up or not, or whether you’re going to spend the whole day indoors or outdoors, you should always apply sunscreen.
Even though your skin is less exposed to the sun during winter, you should not stop protecting it from the sun’s rays. Many creams offer sun protection, but you should ideally choose one that has an SPF of 15 or more. And if you’re always outdoors, you should use one with an SPF of 30 or more.
6. Slough off dead skin more often
It doesn’t matter how cold it becomes, exfoliation is the secret to having a smooth flawless skin during winter. You’ve spent a lot of time outdoors in the heat and sun, and the toll on your skin will be visible in the form of sunspots and sunburn.
Exfoliating your skin will help get rid of dull skin and give you a bright glow. If you allow dead cells to build up, the result will be a lifeless complexion and possibly an array of other skin problems.
So, how often should you exfoliate during winter?
During winter, try to exfoliate two to three times every week, although you shouldn’t over-do it because you may risk irritating your skin and causing a whole load of other skin problems.
Winter may not be here yet, but it’s important to start preparing for its conditions now. That way, once the temperatures drop, your skin will be ready and won’t suffer the wrath of the unexpected dry air and harsh winds.
Here is a YouTube video for some inspiration: