Cold, dry winter weather can really cause irritation, discomfort and can age the skin if proper care isn’t taken. You invest in your skin with cosmetic surgery and non invasive procedures, so it is important to take extra care of your skin, when the weather is extreme, to help those age defying effects last. Here are some tips to help you keep your skin healthy and feeling great.
There are many habits that can strip out the moisture from your skin. This dryness can be painful, itchy and contributes to skin-aging by stripping moisture. So you need to work on replenishing this lost moisture using a few simple steps to do so.
First…some habits to avoid – some to do:
- Taking hot showers or baths removes the natural lubrication and oil on the skin. Although a hot shower always feel good after coming in from the cold, try to keep it short or not too hot.
- Using cleansers and toners, containing harsh ingredients, strips your skin of natural oil. Real sudsy cleansers usually have a surfactant like sodium laurel sulfate and the acetone in many toners can be too harsh along with already dry conditions. Use mild cream or gel cleansers and toner with no alcohol this time of year.
- Sipping hot coffee and tea is so comforting when it’s cold out, but beware the dehydrating effects they can have. – Most people only think to drink lots of water when they’re sweating and hot, but cold, windy air can be just as dehydrating for your skin. So, drink lots of pure water everyday!
Not only do you need to be on the defensive when it comes to protecting your skin (during the winter) by not participating in certain drying habits, but you need to be on the offense to add the extra help it needs this time of year. Here are some ways to add moisture reinforcement for your skin:
- Running the heat in a home strips the air of any moisture, so you can counter this by adding a little water vapor back to your home’s air with a humidifier.
- Diligently use moisturizer morning and night. Never miss moisturizing your face and hands since they’re exposed to the elements the most, but don’t neglect the rest of your body.
- Exfoliate gently to remove the dull dead skin that builds up, but don’t forget that you must moisturize that fresh new skin to keep it healthy and glowing.
- Continue using sunscreen. Snow can actually reflect up to 80 percent UV rays. As skiers and snow sports enthusiasts know, you can skill get a sunburn in the winter.
- Eat foods that encourage your skin to retain and build healthy moisture, such as those rich in essential fatty acids like salmon and other “healthy fats” found in avocados and coconut oil.
I hope these tips help you save your skin this winter. We also offer medical grade, physician prescribed skincare SkinMedica®, which effectively addresses many skin issues and is essential for healthy skin maintenance. Contact our office to schedule your consultation. Call us at 202.966.9590, or fill out our online contact form for more information.
Steven Davison M.D.
Board Certified Plastic/Reconstructive Surgeon