One of life’s simple pleasures is enjoying a long, hot shower in winter but did you know that this, combined with less moisture in the air and increased exposure to sudden temperature changes, can lead to dry, itchy skin and exacerbate some existing skin conditions?

While many of us tend to place a lot of emphasis on healthy looking skin in summer, we can sometimes neglect our skin in the colder months. However, it is just as important to keep up a good, regular skin routine throughout winter.

How does cold weather affect the skin?

One of the main reasons our skin dehydrates more in winter is due to continually moving from cold, dry air outside to warm, dry air inside, coupled with our tendency to use hotter water when bathing and showering.

According to Aesthetic Nurse Prescriber, Sylvia Chanovska, cold air causes the skin’s pores to tighten and reduces blood circulation.

“This reduces the naturally occurring oil, known as sebum, which acts as a protective layer and traps moisture next to the skin,” she said.

“With humidity in the air lower during winter, the cumulative effect is that skin starts to dry out. This can aggravate existing conditions that already make the skin prone to cracking and flaking.”

What can I do to maintain my skin’s health in winter?

The good news is there are a number of very simple steps you can take to help maintain your skin’s health in the winter months. These include:

  1. Watch your water temperature

As tempting as it is, try not to have your water temperature too hot when you shower or bathe in winter and avoid spending too long in there. In addition, using warm water and a moisturising body wash will help prevent your skin from drying out when bathing.

  1. Moisturise, moisturise, moisturise!

Moisturising immediately after your bath or shower will help to lock in moisture and prevent your skin from drying. If you have particularly dry skin or an existing skin condition, talk to your dermatologist about which moisturising product would be best suited for you.

  1. Keep up the fluids

Make sure you continue to drink plenty of water in winter. While it’s easier to manage this in the hotter weather, it is just as important to keep your body hydrated during winter in order to help maintain good skin health.

  1. Eat well and increase the omega 3

What you eat can not only affect your overall health and wellbeing; it can also help your body to support the health of your skin. While it’s tempting to stock up on foods that are potentially not so good for us in winter, it’s important you continue to eat a nutrient rich diet. In addition, eating more foods that are rich in omega-3 fats (such as salmon, anchovies, caviar, walnuts, soybeans, chia seeds and flax seeds) can help to reduce inflammation and provide essential nourishment for your skin.

  1. Layer up

One effective way to stay warm while preventing skin dryness is to add more layers of clothing and reduce the temperature of your heating system. Wearing gloves will also help to keep you warm and prevent the skin drying out too quickly on your hands, which is generally one of the first places we notice dry skin in winter.

  1. Don’t forget the sunscreen

We may think cold, rainy days means we don’t have to worry about the sun. However, while we may not feel the sun as much in winter, it’s still important to apply sunscreen any time that the UV Index is above 3. Not only does too much exposure to the sun cause our skin to dry out, it can also cause irreparable damage.

Do you have a skin concern?
Then why not contact us for a free consultation? One of our skin specialists will assess your skin, your personal needs, and desired results and develop a skin care plan to suit your requirements.

DermCosmesis prides itself on being an ethical, safe and professional skincare clinic for a wide range of ages and focuses on creating a unique and relaxing experience for each visitor.