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The arrival of winter brings with it an array of exciting activities – from bonfire nights to sipping on hot chocolate there’s a lot to love about the cold season. However, not all is well. You may have started to notice people around you complaining of dry hands and chapped lips. But worry not, for we have compiled seven tips for hydrated, glowing skin.
1. Prepare your home
The drier the air, the drier the skin. New York City dermatologist Shari Marchbein, MD recommends placing a humidifier in the room where you spend the most time to maximize the amount of water in the air. This will help your skin stay hydrated.
2. Change your diet
The gut and skin health have a direct connection. Therefore, increasing your daily intake of fats may help with dry skin. Eating a diet rich in walnuts, olive oil, and avocados is a good idea. “Don’t overdo it with caffeine,” she explains, “as it can cause dehydration.” And the most obvious one: Drink a lot of water.
3. Exfoliate your skin
No matter how many serums and creams are applied, dry skin will stay dry without some light buffing. “Pick up a gentle scrub,” says Marchbein, “something with a mild glycolic or lactic acid to get off the dead skin.” For those with raw or severely dry skin, she suggests you skip the exfoliator and incorporate a wet washcloth instead for a gentler option. Serums and moisturisers can penetrate and really get to work once the skin is exfoliated.
4. Switch to a heavy cream
Perhaps one of the most important and commonly overlooked steps in the dry skin game is changing to a seriously hydrating cream. “Look for creams, rather than lotions,” Marchbein says. For patients with severely parched faces, pack on a hefty amount of product, she says, morning and night.
5. Avoid harsh cleansers
Be sure to toss any face washes with drying ingredients, like fragrances or additives, in favour of those with formulated chamomile or oatmeal. “A really gentle cleanser is a great option that won’t strip the skin of its natural oils,” states the expert.
6. Have warm showers
While the heat from an evening shower may feel phenomenal on a chilly day, Marchbein advises to limit rinse time to five minutes or less and to use warm—not hot—water, which only adds to surface dehydration. And instead of irritating soap bars or harsh body washes, pick up a creamy cleanser, “Within 60 seconds of stepping out of the shower, apply a thick body moisturiser to help skin hold on to moisture throughout the night,” she further suggests.
7. Have a nighttime routine
Every night before bed, Marchbein recommends sticking to a routine that will ensure healthy skin for the morning. After your face serum and moisturiser, apply a gentle eye cream to the under eyes and lids. Coat hands with a thick cream and don’t forget the lip balm right before hitting the sheets. For those who are feeling overly dry, hydrating sheet mask is a good idea once a week at bedtime.