For many of us, the cold, dark winter months take their toll on our skin; it can easily become dry, irritated and dull. We are here to shine some light on what could be affecting your skin and how you can adapt your skincare so you’re ready to re-emerge in Spring with beautiful, glowing skin.
Winter season worries
Lower temperatures in the winter months can drastically change the way our skin behaves. Cold air tightens pores and reduces blood circulation causing dehydration and in some cases, cracking skin. This dry skin can lead to the flare-up of other skin conditions such as eczema and rosacea.
Sebaceous oil is produced in the skin to protect from bacteria. Once again, the cold air reduces production which causes clogged pores and pimple breakouts.
Many of us like to cower indoors from the harsh winter environment outside but unfortunately, this doesn’t make us safe from skin affecting elements. Cranking the thermostat up or sitting by the fire is usually too much heat for our skin, yet again causing it to become dry and dull, find your love for layers – both your skin and your heating bill will thank you.
Being stuck indoors tends to mean one thing these days – increased screen time. Our screens emit blue light, a high energy visible light that causes free radical damage as UVA and UVB rays. This blue light from our phones, laptops, TVs etc can stress our skin cells, causing them to become damaged and look aged.
Whether indoors or out, we all experience a lack of Vitamin D in the winter months which can also cause our skin to look sullen. It is also essential for keeping bones, teeth and muscles healthy, the NHS recommends taking supplements between October-March.
‘Tis the season in winter which usually means two things – more alcohol and more food. Excessive amounts of alcohol dehydrates and deprives your skin causing it to appear flushed and puffy, it is also full of toxins which are usually excreted through sweat causing blemishes the next day. Alcohol also affects your sleep quality meaning our skin cells are unable to regenerate properly overnight.
Unfortunately, the chocolates are also not a friend to your skin. Excess sugar in our bloodstream can cause Glycation which weakens the collagen and elastin in our skin, highlighting signs of ageing and sagging skin.
Changing your routine for Winter
We see many changes in our routine and habits in Winter including our wardrobe, the food we eat and our overall daily schedule – but why not in our skincare routine?
The cold air outside and dry heating systems inside is the perfect storm for dry, dull and sometimes irritated skin meaning it craves hydration and protection from the elements.
Cleansing & Exfoliation
Using moisture-packing cleansers can help keep your skin hydrated and plump in winter. The ideal cell regeneration time is 28 days, however, this can take longer in winter. Dead, dry skin cells, therefore, stick around longer than we’d like, causing our skin to look dull. The key to glowing radiant skin during winter is all in exfoliation.
Exfoliants come in two forms – mechanical and chemical. If you suffer from particularly dry skin, always opt for a chemical exfoliant. These products are designed to hydrate and gently remove dead skin cells using acids and enzymes at the same time, so your skin is never left feeling rough and dry. Be aware that not all exfoliants are the same.
Mechanical exfoliators usually include a hard substance to manually scrub away the dead skin cells. It’s best to avoid mechanical exfoliants on dry skin as it can cause small dents leading to an uneven appearance, they can, however, work well for those with more oily skin.
It is a common misconception that you need a rich moisturising cream in Winter to combat the drying effects of the weather. In fact, what you really need is a quality serum with a combination of ingredients designed to penetrate the skin and deliver moisture deep within. Following this with the correct moisturiser identified for your skin type will ensure that all layers of your skin receive that extra level of hydration needed in Winter without your face feeling weighed down with heavy creams.
If you have read previous blog articles or visited us previously you’ll be no stranger to this fact – SPF protection is needed all year round! Protecting your skin from harmful UV rays with broad-spectrum sunscreen is key to preventing premature signs of ageing and hyperpigmentation so don’t let it slip during the winter months.
Our top product recommendations
These are some of our favourite skincare products to help dry skin in Winter:
- HydraBoost Cleanser – A gentle and intensely hydrating pH balanced cream cleanser.
- AHA Renewal Serum – Enhances skin texture and tone, reducing the visible signs of ageing.
- Ultimate Boost Serum – A lightweight, hydrating serum that combines moisturizing and anti-ageing ingredients.
- HydraDew moisturiser – An intensely hydrating moisturizer loaded with powerful peptides, antioxidants and soothing ingredients.
- Sheer Hydration SPF – A broad-spectrum facial sunscreen available in 6 different tints bespoke for your skin.
It is impossible to suggest a list of products that will offer a one-stop complete skincare routine suitable for everyone as it completely depends on the individual skin type, issues and lifestyle. That’s why speaking to an expert to identify what exactly your skin needs throughout the year is the best way to keep it happy and healthy. Book a free video consultation with Dr Sharma to start your skincare journey.