As the days get shorter and temperatures drop, you will undoubtedly notice adverse changes in your skin as we transition between seasons. Climate change can play havoc with your skin, not to mention other lifestyle changes such as central heating and steaming hot showers, and because skin is so sensitive to such elements, it’s vital to rethink your regime. Not only can the weather exacerbate existing skin concerns, it can also present new ones too. From dryness and dehydration to dullness and even breakouts, we speak to several dermatologists and doctors to hear their best advice for keeping your skin in check…
1. Increase Moisture To Prevent Dryness
The autumnal and winter months not only bring colder temperatures, they also see humidity levels fall making the air drier. This is bad news for your skin as the dry air sucks moisture from it, leaving it feeling tight and dry. To combat this it’s crucial to give your skin additional hydration. Dr Barbara Sturm recommends hyaluronic acid for this. “My Hyaluronic Serum is an essential as the formulation contains both high and low weighted hyaluronic molecules to replenish moisture at different layers,” she explains. “To properly absorb the serum, remove any dry and dead skin cells with gentle exfoliation.”
Dr Gary Goldfaden also advises using your serum or moisturiser whilst your skin is still damp as this allows the skin to capture and seal in moisture. For an even more intensive hit, try using a mask specifically formulated to combat dehydration and boost moisture. Kiehl’s new Avocado Nourishing Hydration Mask works to seal in moisture while also preventing further dehydration making it the ideal winter skin treat.
2. Switch To Thicker, Richer Products
Just like switching up your wardrobe, a seasonal shift also requires you to swap your lightweight summer products for something more heavy duty. “I always suggesting switching to thicker creams and even oils in colder months as our skin needs more nourishment,” explains brand founder, Dr David Colbert, who also advises not being afraid of using larger amounts of product. “Our Soothe Cream or Illumino Face Oil are both great for sealing in moisture.” Don’t be afraid to layer both – use the oil to penetrate the deeper layers and then follow with the moisturiser to treat the surface.
3. Keep Up Regular Exfoliation
Exfoliation not only helps to rid dead skin cells, it also boosts the efficiency of other products such as serums and moisturisers. Whilst skin may feel drier in colder months, it is important to keep exfoliating on a regular basis. Twice a week is usually sufficient, any more than this and you run the risk of dryness. “Removing dead skin cells will reveal a bright, more even-toned skin which would otherwise appear dull,” explains Dr Dennis Gross. “I always recommend using a chemical peel (like my Alpha Beta Peel Pads or Professional Grade Resurfacing Liquid Peel) over harsh scrubs – particularly in winter.” As exfoliation can be quite drying for the skin, always follow with a hydrating moisturiser or serum.
4. Pay Attention To Ingredients
In addition to hyaluronic acid Dr Goldfaden also suggests looking for cold-pressed, pure oils and antioxidants. “Baobab and marula oil, as well as many other essential oils all contain high levels of vitamins, essential fatty acids and omegas which provide countless benefits to winter skin,” he explains. “Antioxidants also nourish and rejuvenate skin whilst protecting and brightening, making them another key ingredient to incorporate into your skincare.”
5. Address Specific Concerns
“Our skin is a very complex organ which buffers us as a first line of defence from all environmental changes,” explains Dr Colbert. “As a result of this, the epidermis has to react and many conditions such as eczema and rosacea flare up.” Eczema suffers should reach for something calming and anti-inflammatory such as Odacité CA+C Sensitive Skin Serum Concentrate, whilst Chantecaille’s Jasmine and Lily Healing Mask is great for reducing the appearance of rosacea.
You may also experience breakouts as the skin’s natural moisture barrier becomes weaker and unable to fight bacteria as efficiently. Don’t be tempted to skip moisturiser and dry out sudden spots. Instead, keep moisturising and opt for a targeted treatment to tackle each breakout. Ren’s new Clear Calm Non-Drying Spot Treatment couldn’t have launched at a better time as this gentle formula banishes spots with salicylic acid but also soothes, hydrates and calms with maritime pine, chlorella and thyme.
6. Refocus Your Diet
Healthy skin also comes from nourishing your body from within. The coming of a new season is a great time to refocus your eating habits and increase water intake and Dr Goldfaden believes that healthy-looking skin requires a 360-degree approach to wellness. “I recommend eating a diet rich in fatty acids such as avocados, salmon and leafy greens,” he explains. “This helps to keep inflammation and congestion at bay while infusing nutrient-rich vitamins and minerals back into your system. Try to stay clear of alcohol, white carbs and refined sugar which can trigger unwanted breakouts and irritation,” he adds. Colder weather may mean you are not as thirsty, but it is important to keep drinking in order to maintain a glowy complexion.