Springtime Skin Refresher: Rejuvenate Winter Dryness
Spring is finally here, and with it comes a new opportunity to rejuvenate our skin after the damaging effects of chronic colder weather. In this post, we’ll explore some of the most effective ways to recover from nasty winter dryness!
Why Does Cold Weather Cause Dryness?
It’s actually not so much the cold itself but the corresponding drop in humidity that can be problematic for your skin during winter. When humidity gets below 30%, the atmosphere essentially begins to suck moisture from your skin—resulting in some serious cracking in susceptible areas like your hands and lips. (We often tend to make things worse by taking prolonged, piping hot showers every day. This strips us of our natural protective oils, exacerbating the dryness caused by low humidity.)
Are There Any Simple Solutions?
There certainly are. Here are some of the most important ones:
- Cleanse and moisturize correctly. With the vast range of exfoliating products and brushes on the market, it might be tempting to give your skin a vigorous scrub every time you jump in the shower. But it’s better to be gentle, as scrubbing too hard can irritate the skin. Minimize your use of soap, especially the antibacterial variety—instead, try a cleanser containing glycerin or ceramides.
- Eat omega-3 foods. Diet plays a crucial part in skin rejuvenation, and regular meals or snacks high in omega-3 fatty acids can help your skin retain its natural oils. Examples of these foods include salmon, walnuts, and safflower oil.
- Apply sunscreen. This is one of the most important long-term solutions to dry or damaged skin. Reduce sun damage by using SPF 30+ sunscreen year-round—even on cloudy days. If you have chapped lips, these can be gradually improved with lip balm containing SPF 15+ sunscreen.
- Use a dehumidifier. If humidity levels are still low in your area, it’s worth investing in a dehumidifier to give your skin the chance to recover while you’re at home.
- Avoid hot showers. Hot water can exacerbate dry skin more than most people realize. Try to limit your showers to 5–10 minutes, and use warm rather than hot water.
I Have Serious Skin Dryness. Could You Recommend A More Advanced Treatment?
Absolutely! (In fact, if you have chronic, severe dry skin, you might consider scheduling an appointment with your doctor to make sure you don’t have an underlying medical condition).
If none of the options above seem to be working, you could try chemical skin peels. These come in light, medium, and deep varieties. Dr. Siegel recommends medium or deep peels, as their effects are less superficial and more long-lasting. Peels will initially increase the feeling of dryness, but in the long term you’ll enjoy the sensation of revitalized, elastic, and supple skin.
Dr. Siegel is a facial plastic surgeon with considerable experience in skincare. To find out more about how to deal with your skin’s winter dryness, make an appointment with him today!