Seven tips for glowing winter skin

The winter season brings challenges to our skin, leaving it dry and itchy. Without a proper moisture barrier, it can become irritated, inflamed and even cracked. What can you do to prevent this from happening? Follow these helpful tips to keep your skin looking and feeling amazing all winter long.

1. Limit hot showers

A long, hot shower may sound like the perfect recipe on a cold morning, but too much hot water can strip away your skin’s natural oils. Try lukewarm water instead, and limit showers to ten minutes or less. Use only gentle, mild soaps as deodorant and antibacterial soaps can remove natural oils and dry your skin. Immediately after bathing, carefully pat your skin dry and apply moisturizer to lock in water.

2. Avoid chapped lips

Unlike the rest of your skin, lips tend to dry out and become chapped easily since they do not contain oil glands. As a preventative method, refrain from licking your lips, and moisturize with an SPF 15 or higher lip balm with sunscreen. You can also try applying beeswax or petroleum jelly. Remove dry, dead skin flakes by gently brushing your lips with a wet, soft toothbrush or washcloth.

3. Hydrate hands and heels

It’s not just cold weather that can dry out our hands; it’s also frequently washing your hands and using hand sanitizer. To prevent this from happening, limit heater use, don’t use harsh soaps and be sure to moisturize daily. Use a glycerin-based moisturizer – even simple products like petroleum jelly can help tremendously.

Our heels also suffer during the dry winter months, resulting in peeling and cracking skin. Try coating them with petroleum jelly, then covering them in plastic wrap and wearing socks overnight.

4. Apply a face moisturizer daily

Your face may need a heavier daily moisturizer during the winter months. Some may want to skip anti-aging moisturizers that contain retinoids because they can aggravate already dry skin. To get the most out of your moisturizer, be sure to exfoliate first and remove dry, dead skin cells. If your skin is sensitive, consult a dermatologist before starting a new skincare regimen.

5. Apply sunscreen, always

Sunscreen is a must year-round, especially in sunny Arizona. Any time you are outside for an extended period this winter, make sure to apply sunscreen with an SPF 30 or higher. UVB rays, the main cause of sunburns, can burn and damage your skin year-round, especially at high altitudes and on reflective surfaces, such as snow, water or ice. Snow reflects up to 80% of the sun’s UV light, so the rays hit you twice, increasing your risk of skin cancer and premature aging. UVA rays remain constant throughout the year and can penetrate through clouds and fog. They can also penetrate glass, so it’s still possible to damage your skin while spending a bright winter day indoors.

6. Drink plenty of water

Drink plenty of water throughout the day to promote healthy living as well as healthy skin. Lack of water leads to dry, tight skin, which is more prone to wrinkles and accelerated aging. Regardless of what time of year it is, continue to drink water as much as possible and avoid consuming excess amounts of alcohol and smoking tobacco products, as these dehydrate you too.

7. Don’t forget your scalp

In the winter, you may also experience flares of dandruff. Over-the-counter shampoos that contain ingredients like ketoconazole or selenium sulfide will help you address this problem. Also, stay away from hair pomades and thick hair gels, as these will worsen dandruff. Something to note, there are many rashes that can mimic it, so scheduling an appointment with your dermatologist is a good idea. Plus, they can prescribe special medications to help treat this condition.

Find a dermatologist

If you notice anything suspicious on your skin or want to schedule a skin cancer screening, talk to a board-certified dermatologist.

 

Find a dermatologist