A good winter skincare regime starts in the shower, according to Dove skincare representative and dermatologist Dr. Poonam Rajan, MD. With that in mind, we take you through the right steps for maintaining soft skin throughout the cold months ahead.
#1. Use body and facial cleansers that are lotion-based to infuse skin with moisture, rather than stripping it dry. Creamy cleansers are gentle on the skin barrier and will assist in repair.
#2. Resist the temptation to blast the heat in the shower and turn your home thermometer to 80 degrees. Besides saving on your heating bill, you’ll also save your skin from the heat’s drying effects. When you’re in the shower find a temperature that is not too hot, but also not too cold, since cold water can cause the blood vessels to constrict.
#3.With dryness comes the retention of dead skin cells on the top layer of skin and this will leave your radiant glow a bit duller than usual. Remove dead skin cells by exfoliating regularly using a gentle exfoliant scrub or a facial cloth—just be sure not to scrub too hard.
#4. When applying a body moisturizer post-shower, be sure to lather up as soon as you pat yourself dry. This will allow you to lock in the moisture from the shower with an extra soothing seal. It’s the same for facial skin care: Pat skin dry and moisturize within 2 to 3 minutes to trap the maximum amount of moisture.
#5. A good facial moisturizer is one that’s balanced. Thick lotions can trick you into thinking that they are extra beneficial, however it’s all about the ingredients. Look for an equal amount of occlusives, like mineral oil and beeswax, which increase the water content of the skin by slowing the evaporation of water from its surface, and humectants, such as glycerin and urea, which attract water from the dermis into the epidermis. Many people find it unnecessary to switch to a different moisturizer in the winter months, however if you find that dryness is a real issue, you may want to upgrade your lotion to a cream. If you’re already using a cream, an ointment may be in order. If you have acne-prone skin and the extra thickness is a concern, consider using two products, a lighter lotion for your oily T-zone and a cream or ointment for your cheeks. Another solution is simply adding a hydrating serum to your skin regime.