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Ohio in winter is hard on the skin, especially along the lakeshore with the constant wind and relentless lake-effect snowstorms. Indoor heat, particularly from radiators, exacerbates the drying effect winter weather has on the hands, feet, and face. Moisturizing consistently in winter is essential to mounting a cold-weather defense for skincare, but moisturizing correctly is key to making that defense work. Follow these dos and don’ts for winter skincare to keep skin glowing even when temperatures are frigid.
The first rule of hydration works from the inside out and controls the skin’s principal source of water year-round. Since skin is 64 percent H20, it mostly hydrates from within. With adequate, regular water intake (at least two liters/day), the body can keep the dermis plump and stimulate its collagen production. Collagen is essential for regenerating skin and enhancing its elasticity.
Often the go-to for cold mornings, long, scalding hot showers will actually strip away the natural oils from the skin and could leave sensitive areas like the hands and face irritated and dry. Instead, opt for a warm shower and try not to spend too much time under the hot water.
The secret to winter skincare is to therapeutically moisturize overnight. The treatment consists of coating hands and feet in a deep moisturizer, like olive oil or Vaseline, then covering them with cotton socks and gloves for the night. The extremities enjoy a warm soak of healthy emollients and vitamins while the body rests. Overnight moisturizing also helps counter the effects of dry night air, radiators, and space heaters. A cold-mist humidifier may provide additional relief from nighttime dryness.
To avoid making dry matters worse, aestheticians recommend daily facial cleansing using gentler, less abrasive skincare products. They also advise against exfoliating more than once or twice weekly and suggest choosing a scrub with small, soft beads. Never use facial cleansing cloths—not even to remove makeup. They often contain harsh, dehydrating chemicals, and they strip away vital natural moisture that protects the face from the elements.
For those who can’t tolerate heavy creams well, serums are an excellent winter skincare solution. They contain little or no lubricants or thickeners, so the skin quickly and deeply absorbs nourishment from them. Serums can also be used underneath other lotions as a first layer of defense or alone for a lighter yet deeply penetrating skin moisturizer.
For help finding the right skincare system for you, schedule a consultation with our staff at Donaldson Plastic Surgery. During the visit, you can book one of our restorative facials or proprietary peels to repair and defend your skin during winter weather.
*Earned by Dr. Donaldson