Winter is a great time for many things. Cuddling. Comfort Food. Netflix. It is, however, a pretty lousy time for our skin—at least those of us that experience cold, dry, and otherwise awful winter weather. A little extra time and effort might be needed to maintain the glow, but summertime-fine looking skin is worth it, am I right? These 5 practices will have you looking like you flew South for the winter. Ready. Set. Glow!
At this point we're all sick of hearing how essential water is to our health, but it’s especially crucial when it comes to winter skincare. The air is cold and dry which dehydrates our bodies and thirsty skin is a complexion killer. To combat this I drink at least 64 oz. per day and I pump it up to 80 oz. if it feels like I need the extra TLC. Trust me, you can do it, too. Just invest in a large water bottle like 25 oz. Corkcicle Canteen ($32.95 Amazon) and prepare to take a few extra bathroom breaks.
2. Dead Skin Has Got to Go.
To slough off dead skin cells you have two options: A.Physical exfoliants. These have a grit to them and literally buff the skin away. B.Chemical exfoliants, commonly referred to as AHA’s (Alpha-hydroxy Acids) and BHA’s (Beta-hydroxy Acids). These dissolve dead skin gradually and in skincare they typically show up in the form of Glycolic or Salicylic acids. I have been exfoliating in the morning 2-3 times a week. Alternating between Neutrogena® Naturals Purifying Pore Scrub ($5.97 Target) for physical, and Peter Thomas Roth Anti-Aging Gel Cleanser ($38 Sephora) for chemical has kept my skin smooth operating.
Warning: Use caution if you have sensitive skin. Exfoliants are not one-size-fits-all. I’ve found that Mario Badescu’s Glycolic Cleanser ($16 Amazon) is super gentle and works great on sensitive skin types, but I still recommend exfoliating only once a week if you are new to it.
3. Brighten Up With Vitamin C.
To combat dull, lifeless looking skin I have been including Vitamin C in my morning routine with Ole Henriksen’s Truth Serum ($48 Sephora) and it’s been working wonders. I have an olive skin tone that can take on a grayish hue if I don’t take care of it—and not in the sexy Twilight vampire way—but every skin tone is prone to occasional dullness from winter hibernation. Vitamin C brightens, stimulates collagen production, and lightens dark spots. Yes, mhm, yep! #StillTeamEdward
4. Replenishing Moisture is Key.
If I had to recommend only one step (aside from the water—there’s just no getting around that one), it would be to moisturize your skin! My go-to has been Ole Henriksen Sheer Transformation® Moisturizer ($38 Sephora). It absorbs right into the skin and gives a deep hydration using Vitamin E and plant extracts, without feeling sticky. At night I get fancy and mix in 2-3 drops of Radha Rosehip Oil ($13.25 Amazon) for an extra dose of hydration, and anti-aging. If you are very dry and require something more emollient and creamy, try First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair® Cream ($12 Sephora). If you want to be "extra", which I fully support, I highly recommend Cera-ve Eye Repair Cream ($10.79 Target). It has a powerhouse list of ingredients that hydrate, de-puff, and minimize dark circles. I'm all about it.
5. Don't Let Those UV Rays Play You!
Protect your skin from the sun, okay?! Just because it feels sunless and sad outside doesn't mean the UV rays stop doing what they do. My favorite way to protect my skin this winter has been the IT cosmetics CC Cream ($38 Sephora), which has an SPF 50 and gives medium coverage. If you’re not into incorporating makeup in your sun protection or vice versa, try CeraVe AM Facial Moisturizing Lotion with SPF 30 ($14.99 Target). It’s super lightweight and works well under makeup if you choose to wear it.
*Bonus* My Special Sauce.
AQUAPHOR ($4.24 Target) This stuff is voodoo magical unicorn tears and it has been my secret weapon this winter. I discovered this while babysitting my nephew, who had what I would describe as an impressively gory diaper rash. After one day, I repeat ONE DAY of using Aquaphor the rash was miraculously healed. From that moment on I began putting it all over myself. I use it on my lips, cuticles, in and around my nose...even on my split ends! It heals, protects, and helps the skin retain moisture. I won’t pretend to know exactly how it does it, but take my word for it. It’s the Beyoncé of skincare hacks—and it’s cheap! Surfboard.
Show your skin some extra love this winter or use these tips to reinvigorate your skin, whatever the season!