Caring For Your Skin When The Weather Is Frightful
Noses are red, fingers are blue. I’m done with winter – how about you?
— The Mentalpause
My skin is tired of the cold! (I am too but that’s another story). I wanted to focus today on caring for our skin in the depths of winter.
Did you know that skin is our largest organ? It is soft…to allow movement…but also incredibly strong to resist tearing. Skin is a great indicator of your overall health. If you aren’t healthy your skin is often the first place it shows. Our skin serves many functions from providing sensory inputs – like pleasure and pain – to giving us a waterproof covering for our entire body. Skin is our first line of defence against bacteria and also a built-in air conditioner by providing sweat glands to cool us down when we’re hot. Doesn’t it make sense to take some time to care for this amazing and resilient organ?
1. Resist the urge to turn up the heat. Cold makes you want to be warm but by turning up the thermostat you are further drying the air and potentially causing your skin to lose excess moisture. Go easy on the heat.
2. Treat your skin to fragrance-free cleansers. Stay away from bar soaps which contain harsh ingredients. Opt instead for gels or moisturising cleansers that will help heal and soothe dry skin.
3. Take shorter, cooler showers. No, not cold, but warm instead of hot. Hot water can damage the skin much like sunburn would. Warm water and shorter showers keep skin clean without damaging the delicate moisture balance.
4. It may be grey and cloudy outside but that doesn’t mean you can forget the sunscreen. Damaging UV rays can still penetrate the clouds and that means you could wind up with a sunburn! SPF 15 or higher on all exposed skin will help counteract the effects. Use one with a moisturiser and you are even better off.
5. Don’t forget your lips. Licking your lips in cold weather may make them feel better in the moment but can lead to “lip eczema”. Try to find a good quality lip balm with a sunscreen. Your lips will be grateful you did.
6. Don’t forget to stay hydrated and eat right. By choosing healthy foods and staying away from sugary sodas you are doing your absolute best for your skin. Water is what your body is primarily made of and it needs water to thrive.
Simple tips and a few quick changes may be all it takes to help your skin not only survive winter’s chill but thrive in it. That’s a win for skin and your overall health.