6 Winter Skin Bad Habits That Are Aging You
Do you know that as the weather changes so does your skin? This the season for a whole host of cold-weather skin problems that are easy to prevent. If you can fix these common bad winter skincare habits you’ll be on your way to smoother, more radiant skin in no time.
Winter Skin Bad Habit #1: You jump in a hot shower in the morning.
Everyone loves a blast of hot water when it’s freezing outside, but hot water sucks moisture out of the skin. Turn the temperature down a notch and your skin will stay more hydrated. This holds true when you wash your hands too.
Winter Skin Bad Habit #2: You don’t hydrate after showering.
Adding moisture to skin while it’s still slightly damp helps lock in hydration. A key hydrating ingredient: hyaluronic acid, which binds moisture to the skin while feeling weightless and leaving skin supple. My tip is to apply a hydrating serum cocktailed with a moisturizer within 30 seconds of showering, this maximizes full nutrient absorption. Do it whilst in a steamy bathroom!
Winter Skin Bad Habit #3: You don’t change up your skincare routine.
What works for skin in the warm-weather months is different from what works during the winter season. As the air becomes thinner, skin is dryer and needs extra hydration. Layer on a hydrating serum under your usual moisturizer and add an oil to your regimen before you go to bed.
Look for skincare ingredients that include humectants. These draw water into the skin from the environment. In winter, you also need to ramp up your exfoliation to get rid of the dead dry skin cells on the skin’s surface. Look for nighttime moisturizers with retinol (which exfoliates while increasing moisture and elasticity) and day and night moisturizers with alpha and beta hydroxy acids (like lactic and/or glycolic acid) to exfoliate skin.
Winter Skin Bad Habit #4: You skip the SPF.
Summer may be over but the sun’s rays don’t take a break. In fact, the sun’s aging and cancer-causing ultraviolet rays still shine through on cloudy, inclement days. What’s more, the sun’s rays are more intense at higher altitudes (if you’re skiing or snowboarding) and reflect off snow and ice, making SPF critical during the winter, too. A daily SPF can help prevent dark spots, wrinkles, and rough skin.
Winter Skin Bad Habit #5: You crank up the heat.
Indoor heating systems suck moisture out of the air (and your skin), leaving skin parched. Better to keep the temperature moderate and layer on a sweater. Or even run a humidifier to add moisture back into the air. Add a daily hyaluronic acid serum and/or moisturizer to your regimen, it will ensure that moisture stays in the skin. Products with niacinamide, or vitamin B3, can also help lock in moisture.
Winter Skin Habit #6: You don’t supplement with vitamin D.
This vitamin (which is actually a hormone) is essential to almost all functions in the body, including the skin. While the body is able to manufacture vitamin D (upon exposure to sunlight), the body’s stores of vitamin D run low in the darker winter months. A supplement can help your body, but topical vitamin D can help boost skin’s radiance, minimize acne, increase elasticity, stimulate collagen production, and lessen lines and the appearance of dark spots.
These are simple yet effective rituals where a slight change can go a long way. Beautiful, youthful skin starts with good daily skincare habits and don’t forget, a healthy balanced diet.
Dr. Dennis Gross