Cold Weather + Low Humidity = your skin’s worst nightmare. Together, these two make dry skin your biggest winter beauty problem. I’m going to share a few ways to combat dry skin and stay looking hydrated AF.
So what’s the deal with winter skin? Let’s get technical: cold air isn’t able to hold as much moisture as warm air and the lack of moisture also makes it feel colder than it really is. Turning up the heat is a normal response to colder temperatures; but doing so vaporizes the remaining moisture in the air making matters worse. It’s a lose-lose situation. The simplest solution is to increase the humidity in your immediate environment a.k.a. your house.
#1 Use a Humidifier/Diffuser
What’s the difference? A humidifier warms water and disperses it in the air by way of steam while a diffuser disperses cool water by vibrations. The drawbacks with using a warm humidifier are that you can get burned or that it’s noisy. Diffusers can also be used with essential oils for aromatherapy.
The portable device I use, the SpaRoom Natura Diffuser, is a cool mist ultrasonic diffuser. It’s super quick, uses a minimal amount of water and lasts for a full 8 hours on it’s intermediate mode. Not to mention that it design is minimal and fits into our decor without drawing attention to itself.
The ideal range for room humidity is 35-45%. I use a small temperature/humidity monitor to monitor levels in each room of my house. It’s easily concealed behind decor and, while it’s not exact, it provides a good estimate of the conditions in my home. Too high humidity levels are also bad: condensation build up can travel through walls causing peeling paint along with mold growth and rot!
*TIP: Use distilled water to avoid mineral and fungus build up + use white vinegar to clean your unit*
#2 Keep Real Plants in Your House
Plants add moisture to the air as part of their own natural process. They absorb water from the soil and then release it through pores in their leaves. An added bonus is that they also filter out toxins in the air as well, so, not only will your house look better but the air quality will be improved as well.
I know what you’re thinking … that you can’t keep a plant alive. I’ve been there; which is why the plants that I’m suggesting are the easiest to keep alive. The require minimal care, can survive in dry environments and even do good in spaces that don’t get tons of light. Water when the top 2 inches of the soil is dry and you’ll be good. Or invest in moisture meters that you place in the soil that will tell you when to water (it’ll say the soil is dry). This will help you make sure that you aren’t overwatering either.
My Favorite Indoor Plants: succulents, pothos, snake plant
#3 Avoid HOT Water on your skin
When it’s cold, all you want to do is stand under a stream of hot water. I totally understand that because I’m super sensitive to cold temperatures and that’s often the only was for me to warm up.
Hot water is the number one thing that will dry your skin (and hair too) out because it strips away all the natural oils. So try to use warm water to shower or wash your face/hands.
Using moist heat like steam or moist hot packs are a better option for warming up because they restore moisture instead of taking it away.
Do this immediately when you get out of the shower, when you wake up, after you’ve been outside in the cold, dry air or when you’re sitting in front of a heater or air conditioner.
I normally use a heavier face cream at night, regardless of the season, but during the winter months I will also use it during the day time to combat dry skin. I don’t usually change the body lotion I use but I do make sure to moisturize often, especially after I shower. If I’m feeling extra dry I sometimes add a body or facial oil on top to seal all the moisture in.
Another great product to help restore skin hydration is using a hyaluronic acid serum. Hyaluronic acid has a unique ability to hold onto moisture (one liter of water per one gram of HA). It also creates a protective, air-permeable layer that locks moisture in.
#5 CHUG CHUG CHUG
Then drink more.
And when you think that you drank enough; drink more. For the average person 3-5 liters of water a day is ideal.
Hot chocolate and vanilla lattes do not count towards your water intake. If you’re feeling like a hot drink → hot water with lemon is a great substitute. Not only will it warm you up but it also aids in digestion and boost your metabolism and immune system. It’s an excellent source of Vitamin C which, if you read my Active Skin Ingredients post, you know is super beneficial for skin recovery and protection. You can also add a little honey, if you want a little sweetness, which is an antioxidant, antifungal and antibacterial.