Dani’s Winter Skin Care

Winter. This word makes me think of hot cocoa, warm fireplaces, and snuggling my kiddos as the snow falls softly outside. Unfortunately, it also makes me think of constantly running my furnace, blustery cold winds, and horribly dry skin. I live in Michigan. In case you aren’t familiar with it, this is one of the states where the air hurts your face 5 months out of the year.

If you’re like me, then you may be on the search for a remedy for the dryness that lingers this time of year. I have spent years trying different things and talking to skin care specialists. Here are a few things I have tried.

Invest in a humidifier. When we’re constantly running our furnace, we dry our air out. A small humidifier in your room, or a big house one can make a huge difference. Keeping your humidity up has so many benefits. It keeps the outer layer of your skin well hydrated, which is a great thing, but it also helps keep your nasal passages and lips from drying out. Warm or cool mist just depends on your situation. I have kids so I use a cool mist to remove the chance of someone getting a steam burn. Don’t forget to follow manufacturer instructions to keep it clean and sanitary.

Next on my list is hydrate from the inside. Drinking water is so important. Your body is mostly water that constantly needs to be replenished. It is generally recommended to drink eight 8oz glasses a day. Making sure your body gets enough water is huge for healthy skin. Just a few benefits of staying hydrated are lessening signs of aging, smaller pores, less itchy skin, and clearing of acne.

Another part that I have struggled with is taking less hot showers. I love the heat. Just standing in the water, or a really hot bath with a good book. But when your skin is already dry this just makes it worse. Cooling it down just a little and patting dry (instead of rubbing hard) can make your skin hang on to extra moisture.

For really dry skin, my favorite thing is an oatmeal bath. You can buy them pre-made or make your own. I use Aveeno Soothing Bath Treatment (8 ct Amazon $6.19). This one is 100% Colloidal Oatmeal, which will soothe and protect your dry skin. If you’re more of the DIYer, you can take oatmeal out of your cupboard, powder a half cup in your blender and use that instead. Just add it to a warm (not hot) bath. Soaking for 15-20 minutes does the trick. Pat dry after and lotion up immediately. Give it a try! Your skin will thank you.

Let’s talk about body scrubs next. There’s a big difference between the ones you use on your body to the ones made for your face. Facial skin is more sensitive and can’t handle some of the rougher scrub materials that your body can. (For more info on what to use on your face, check out the post in archives Building a Skin Routine and Baking Soda is NOT a Face Exfoliant).  I love a good body scrub, and in the winter scrubbing once a week is great for removing that dead, dry skin. Also, there is something very pampering and spa-like about a good scrub.

One of my favorite brands to use is Farmhouse Fresh. If you haven’t checked them out, this is such an amazing company out of Texas. They are generally vegan (a few do contain beeswax), cruelty free, and their products range between 94%-99% natural. They also offer a completely organic line. My personal fav is the Sweet Tea body polish ($34 It smells so yummy and uses cane sugar to gently smooth skin.

If you aren’t into buying one, scrubs are so easy to make yourself. I recommend using regular sugar or brown sugar for a softer scrub. You can use sea salt or raw sugar for a rougher one once in awhile. Those are really nice for your legs. Once you pick your scrub material, then add your oil. I prefer almond oil for my skin. It absorbs nicely and doesn’t leave a greasy feel. (It’s what I used when I did massage a few years ago). You can use olive oil or coconut if you prefer. You can scrub just like that or get a little creative. Add a little vanilla for a great scent. Or a few used coffee grounds for a yummy, wake you up fragrance. No matter what scent you choose, you’re on your way to beautiful hydrated skin.

Last thing I want to cover is moisturizing. This is how you lock it all in and get that healthy glow. For that dry winter skin, a fragrance free option is going to be best. Perfumy lotions smell amazing but they usually have ingredients that aren’t the greatest for that extra moisture we are talking about. There are a few ingredients to look for that help with hydration. Peptides (amino acids) help your skin produce collagen. This helps with your elasticity and keeping it hydrated. Hyaluronic Acid and Dimethicone can both help keep you moisturized as well. If you are looking more on the natural side, Shea Butter is an amazing option. It won’t clog pores (non-comedogenic in technical terms) and leaves the skin feeling silky and refreshed. Moisturize right after your shower or bath to really lock it in.

There is always a little trial and error when coming up with the best routine for you. Keep at it and you will be rocking healthy, hydrated, glowing skin in no time!

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