You've been there. The winter air dries out skin and you'd give anything to relieve the itchiness. Believe me, I understand your pain. I've been there myself. So, while planning the New Year, New You series, I wanted to take a moment to help those fighting dry winter skin. Hopefully these tips will help you like they helped me.
1. Choose a Gentle Cleanser
Chemicals full of harmful chemicals do a number on the skin, especially during the winter. Dr. Cynthia Bailey suggests, "Use gentle cleansers only, use them only where you need them, and rinse them off your skin thoroughly with warm water."
That "squeaky clean" feeling you get from harsh cleansers indicate you are stripping the face of natural oils. This week, many parts of the United States are experiencing deep freezes. It's so bad that hot water freezes almost instantly. This makes it even more important to protect your skin!
When your cleanser completely strips the outer layer of dead skin cells (this is called the stratum corneum, for all you technical folks), your body does not have any protection from extreme temperatures that happen during the winter.
Switch to a gentle cleanser. The winter is bad enough without adding chapped skin to the equation.
2. Moisturize frequently
Recently, I read the back of a moisturizer bottle at my local market. It warned against using the product more than once a day because, "excessive drying or peeling may occur."
Ok, so don't moisturize frequently with some crazy "moisturizer" like that. Instead, find a gentle moisturizer like we offer at ZENMED. Then use it, frequently.
Keeping your skin moisturized is a key part of winter skin protection. And let's be honest, when you think of creating a new you this new year, dry skin wasn't what you had in mind. Keep it moisturized, ladies and gents.
3. Use Sunscreen
It's a very common misconception that you only need sunscreen during the summer. However, harmful UVA rays remain just as strong during winter months. UVA rays also cause harm on sunny and cloudy days. So, you need to be wearing sunscreen any day and everyday.
Stephanie Holden, RN, BSN offers her best advice, "When it comes to sun protection, treat every day like a sunny day. Think of sunscreen as a 365-day-a-year requirement. Your skin–and your health–will thank you."
An SPF sunscreen with SPF 40 is recommended for daily use. And don't forget to reapply it frequently throughout the day, especially if your skin gets wet.
There you go! Create a winter regimen that includes these tips and you'll beat dry skin once and for all this winter.