If I had a dime for every time a client has come in for an appointment with me, frustrated with how dry their skin has become this winter… let’s just say… cha- ching would take on a new meaning. Yes… it is winter and as usual, the vast majority of us notice a change in our skin. I have written about dry skin in general, however… winter, dry skin is a whole different animal! I am referring to skin that is dry, dehydrated, crepey, possibly irritated, and… no matter what we try, our normal skincare and make up routine, just isn’t cutting it! There is a very simple reason why your skin is going through this change. Not only is the air outside cold, but the humidity level, or as I like to meteorologically refer to it, the dew point is low. What does that mean? The moisture in the air is at an all time low… and that environmental moisture, that is one of your skin’s best friends… has vanished. To make matters worse, the heat in you house only adds insult to injury. What little moisture your skin was able to hang on to, gets sucked out… thanks to trying to stay warm inside. It happens every year, but when you have a long, cold dry spell… it can take a toll on your skin. So, what are the solutions? Well, there are several. So in this post, I am going to give you several tips and tricks to get that hydration back in your skin… regardless of the dew point.
First of all, and I cannot stress this enough… what is going on inside of your body, will be evident on the outside of your body for sure. So, we know where I am going with this… hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! Drinking water is not just for the summer months. It is a year round thing and can be the first step to getting hydration back in your skin. Remember, your skin is your body’s largest organ. So, you want to get as much H2O down the hatch as you can. Like you, I get tired of water, so luckily this year I was turned on to the Age Quencher line of products, by my friend, Virginia @yourlifeedit. The Beauty Electrolyte product has been a life saver for me, for not only hydration, but for energy as well. It is a totally natural way of getting that extra hydration into my entire body. One scoop of the powder in a glass of water will equivocate 3 glasses of plain water. There is a reason that this product is on “My Faves” page. I encourage you to try it! Use my code MARY15 to save 15 percent on your order at AgeQuencher.com. Also, you need to up your intake of those healthy fats. I like to think of this like a mechanic… the engine has got to be “lubed up” in order to run correctly… well, the same is true for your skin. Avocados, salmon, nuts and eggs… are all high in those omega rich oils… which will aid in the hydration of your skin. And while we are on this subject… that wine and your beloved cup of morning Jo….well they are throwing you in reverse. Yep, alcohol and caffeine dehydrate your system… so for every serving of alcohol or caffeine, have a serving of water as well.
2. Remove Dry Skin
So, you are moisturizing like crazy, but the moisturizer just seems to sit on top of your face. That is simply because you have a barrier of dry skin on your face that is not allowing anything to penetrate. You have dead skin on your face monthly… however, when it is dry, it is even more of an issue. I don’t care what kind of hydrating mask or super charged moisturizer you buy… you will not get the full benefit of it unless the dead skin is removed. In my opinion, the best way to do this is by way of dermaplaning. This is an aesthetic service in which a sterile scalpel is used to gently lift the dead skin off of the face. For full details on dermaplaning, check out my blog post (Dermaplaning… Everything You Need to Know) I don’t recommend most facial scrubs or microdermabrasion, for the most part, because they can be too abrasive on skin that is already somewhat compromised, and can end up doing more harm than good, in the way of causing sensitivities to the skin. For that reason, I do recommend dermaplaning. When done correctly, the dead skin is carefully removed to reveal a fresh pallete, that will absorb hydration readily.
3. Hydrate Topically
About those products… if you are a Retin A user, or you are heavy on the AHAs or glycolics, you may want to pull back on those a bit, until your moisture barrier is restored… or until the weather allows. These products, though beneficial for the skin, can be drying, so backing off a bit, can be helpful. When using your Retin A, always top it with a layer of moisturizer after it has had time to penetrate. This will allow for the benefits of the Retin A without as much of the irritation and drying effects. Topical hydration is key… and the layering of products is important. Serums, such as those containing hyularonic acid, will help the skin to retain moisture from within. So, serums need to be closest to the skin… and will penetrate best on a damp face. You will apply your moisturizer on top of your serum. I am a big fan of mixing facial oils with my moisturizer for that added boost of moisture, that lasts all day long. My favorite are the facial oils from Beauty Counter… simply because there are no irritating ingredients, they do not clog the pores and quite frankly, they work! Refer to my post, (Magic in A Bottle) for more details on facial oils. These facial oils are also on “My Faves” page. You can order directly from me by going to Beautycounter.com/marymattson
4. Create Your Own Humidity
Lastly, create your own humidity in your home. This is so simple. I shared this idea on my Insta Stories a few weeks ago, and my inbox lit up with questions. Humidifiers are not just for chest colds. They are great for putting moisture into the air for the sake of your skin. The most important place for one is your bedroom. During the hours of sleep is the time when your skin is in its most restorative state. For this reason, we want to encourage as much hydration during this time as is possible. I have a humidifier right next to my bed that emits a cool mist all night long. It can be a game changer for your skin… not to mention your sinuses and your hair.
We experience this dilemma every year… and it seems that it is inevitable. The seasons and all that comes with them, can wreak havoc on our skin. Trust me… we will have our issues to discuss in the summer months as well. But, for now, dealing with dry skin can be a bit of a battle. So, put these four tips into practice: hydrate from the inside, gently exfoliate the dead, dry barrier, hydrate topically, and create your own humidity. It’s really quite simple. The key is being diligent with this routine until you get some relief. And… might I add… patience. Yes, patience. Like everything that we really want… getting that happily hydrated skin back in check, can take a little time. I guess it’s fair to say that “patience” should be number five. I am sure that there are some more great tips and tricks that are winners… please feel free to share your ideas with me, here on the blog. Thanks, in advance!