The Winter months are particularly challenging for our skin. A combination of colder outdoor temperatures with drying internal heating and low humidity, causes the epidermis to become dehydrated. Harsh winds, rain or snow also cause environmental damage. Skin feels drier, rougher, more sensitive and more prone to breakouts.
Here are three Winter skincare rules to abide by:
#1 Rethink your moisturiser
As your skin becomes drier during the Winter, it can be frustrating when you slap on cream or lotion and experience only a short-lived improvement. A long-term and visible improvement in dehydrated skin is about using the correct skincare products that will attract moisture into the epidermis and keep it there.
Humectants, such as hyaluronic acid, attract water from the deep layers of the epidermis to the surface layers of the skin. Emollients help repair cracks in the skin barrier, thus preventing water loss. Occlusives form a barrier on the skin to block water loss. Look for products that combine these ingredients to restore the skin barrier, decrease water loss and increase water content in the skin.
Alumier MD’s HydraDew is an intensely hydrating moisturiser loaded with Sodium Hyaluronate, a form of hyaluronic acid holds up to 1,000 times its weight in water; Shea Butter, an emollient with soothing and antioxidant properties; and Niacinamide, an occlusive ingredient that traps moisture as well as brightening the skin.
#2 Repair your skin barrier
The skin barrier is located in the upper layer of the skin and is formed of natural oils. It is the first line of defence from any environmental stress and protects against foreign substances that try and penetrate the skin such as bacteria or pollution. Winter places a lot of stress on our delicate skin barrier and the key indicator that it has been compromised is irritated and dehydrated skin.
If your skincare products aren’t cutting it, an advanced facial could be the solution for skin barrier repair. The 3D Hydro Facial combines several technologies to improve your skin health, including the unique Fire and Ice handpiece. First the skin is warmed to a temperature of 42°C which creates heat-shock proteins, which repair the skin and strengthen its elasticity. The skin is then cooled to a minimum of 5°C, which tightens pore and locks in moisture.
#3 Up your intake of the sunshine vitamin
As we head into the darkest Winter months, it is important to consider the amount of vitamin D we’re getting. From October to March, the sun in the UK does not produce enough ultraviolet light to produce sufficient vitamin D levels.
Vitamin D can help you fight off seasonal colds and infections but is also key for the skin’s defences. Inflammatory conditions such as acne, eczema and rosacea, often flare up when you’re deficient in vitamin D.
It’s possible to get vitamin D from food sources such as oily fish, including salmon, mackerel, and sardines, egg yolks, red meat, and liver. However, most of us do not get enough vitamin D from our diet to make up for the lost sunlight so we may need to consider a supplement.
For more Winter skincare advice, call 0115 772 2363 to arrange a consultation with Dr Claudia.