Winter is here, and with it is cooler air, dry indoor heat, low humidity, and harsh winter wind. These elements can deplete skin moisture and impact skin health and appearance. So I want to share five tips to keep your skin healthy and glowing all winter long.
The good news is that if you are already using quality, organic products that hydrate your skin and protect the skin barrier, you have a good start toward minimizing the effects of winter on the skin. A good example is Restoracell products with GHK-Cu. The copper peptides work to repair protective skin barrier proteins and support the functioning of healthy skin cells.
GHK-Cu also promotes the production of water-holding glycosaminoglycans (GAGS), which help moisturize and hydrate the skin barrier. And, along with GHK-Cu, the Restoracell Stem Cell Awakening Serum includes hyaluronic acid. This humectant can hold nearly 1,000 times its weight in water and draws moisture into the skin.
In addition to using products that protect your skin barrier year-round, here are five tips that will help you boost the health of your skin during the winter months.
1. Avoid harsh cleansers or soaps, and do not over wash your face. Consider using only water in the morning and opt for a cream cleanser at night. Dr. Ross Perry, Medical Director of Cosmedics, UK, recommends using a gentle, fragrance-free cleanser, as strong soap can worsen itchy, dry skin. He adds, "I'd advise choosing a cream-based cleanser and use toners and astringents sparingly as quite often these contain alcohol, which can further dry your skin out."
To help keep my skin hydrated, I use Bioderma Micellar Water to cleanse and freshen my face in the morning after work out. While other cleansers can strip natural oils from the skin, micellar water is much gentler. Micellar water draws away impurities by attracting them to the molecules suspended in the water solution and is, therefore, less likely to dry out and irritate the skin. I always rinse afterward with warm water so that my products absorb better.
At night, I use Restoracell's Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser. It is a cream consistency and non-foaming formula that removes dirt, oil, makeup, and impurities without stripping the skin barrier. In addition, the lactic acid gently removes damaged skin cells so my skin can better absorb the serum and moisturizer.
2. Keep exfoliation in your winter skincare routine. Between the cold air outside and dry indoor heating, your skin cells dehydrate and die out faster in winter. You'll want to buff away these dead cells so new cells can come in healthier and without obstruction. Most experts recommend exfoliating at least two times a week.
3. Moisturize with products that bring in water and keep it locked in. According to Joshua Zeichner, MD., director of Cosmetic and Clinical Research at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, hydration is best fed to the skin on the surface. Moisturizers contain three types of ingredients that work together to help the skin. Occlusive forms a protective seal over the skin; humectants act as a sponge to pull in hydration to the outer skin layers; and emollients, smooth the rough edges between cells in the outer layer. According to Zeichner, a proper moisturizer (or routine) will have all three components to bring in water and keep it locked in.
Restoracell Skin Awakening Moisturizer includes all three components. The shea butter works as an occlusive, forming a protective seal over the skin. The coconut oil is a humectant, acting like a sponge to hydration to outer layers. Finally, natural oils such as almond oil and kukui nut oil act as emollients to smooth out the rough edges between cells in the outer layers. Skin repairs itself overnight, so hydrating before bed with a good moisturizer in the wintertime is a pretty important step.
4. Continue to wear SPF
People may think they can stop using SPF on their faces once the winter months arrive. However, even though the temperature drops significantly in the winter months, the sun can still be powerful and damaging to the skin, especially when reflecting off the snow. Therefore, it's essential to wear a mineral-based SPF on your face, neck or anything exposed. Doing so will help hold off premature aging for longer. And, as I always like to add, don't forget the hands.
5. Hydrate from the inside
Another critical step to keeping your skin healthy and glowing is to make sure you're staying well hydrated throughout the day. Not taking in enough fluid can affect your skin's appearance and make it more susceptible to drying out. According to Dr. Suzanne Ferree Turner, founder of Vine Medical Associates, "when it's cold, we do not tend to drink as much fluid, and often we are drinking hot drinks like coffee which can be dehydrating." Instead, she suggests drinking hot herbal tea or making your own turmeric collagen tea.
In addition to saying well hydrated, you may also want to focus on eating foods high in antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids or supplement with high-quality Omega-3. According to Dr. Nicholas Perricone, "A supplement I advise patients not to be without is a high-quality Omega-3," he says. "I've seen some of the most dramatic results in terms of skin transformation with those who have chronically dry skin who begin an omega-three supplement regimen. They'll quickly feel the difference in their skin and notice diminished dryness and increase in suppleness and radiance."
If you will avoid harsh soaps and cleansers, exfoliate dead skin cells away, moisturize and protect your skin with the right products, and make an extra effort to stay hydrated, you can help keep that healthy glowing skin even in the winter.
I think I will make some turmeric collagen tea right now.