Snow Bunny or Beach Bum
Winter must be the element of which the phrase "dangerous beauty" was coined after. Crisp pristine and icy cold is what a typical winter looks like. Beautiful yet treacherous to the unprepared.
It doesn't matter if you prefer baking in the sun or the chill of the winter wind one thing is for sure your skin is always looking for protection. I'll be honest with you, I am a tropical bird and dread the cold. I spend the cold months in layers of thermals and sweaters wrapped up like a mummy, and still, my skin acts like I've been making snow angels in the nude all season. No matter what the temperatures are and how much or how little we spend time outside our skin will inevitably be exposed to the joys of winter weather and all the blowback that comes with it. The dryness, chapping, irritation, and flaking, to name just a few. We all deal with these annoying cold weather skincare troubles, and it’s just easier to write winter off as your bad skin months like those occasional "bad hair days" and resolve to fix your skin in the spring. But don't. Why? Because you have options and I am here to give them to you.
Conquer Your Winter Skin
Winter skin can be conquered with a few planned changes to your skincare routine. With ultra-hydrating and a boost in your exfoliation routine, you can maintain your summer glow well into the frosty winter months.
The Chill Kills
Before you look for an answer, you need to understand the question you are asking. What exactly makes for angry winter skin. Freezing temperatures mean lower humidity, so the air is much drier which upsets the moisture balance of your skin. I live in the Northeastern part of the United States. Here we go without sunlight and mind-numbing cold temperatures for days at a time. This affects different skin types in various ways; some people deal with extreme dryness, inflammation, chapping, and irritation. while others will simply see sensitivity and spot dryness from friction caused by the sweaters and coats that continuously rub against our skin. The different treatments they use on their skin can also affect how they react to the weather. Ex. Acne and blemish treatments.
There are other issues less known, and less thought of that will affect how our skin responds to the cold. Many of us spend hours in the sun at the beach or in the pool. If you are anything like me, I spend as much time as I can outside in Spring and summer. I am busy gardening and weeding or merely spending time with the kiddos in the pool. So we roll into fall and winter with UV damage paired with latent dryness - a perfect storm of sorts which escalate the signs of aging and leave you more in need for hydration than you realize. So we march the most trying season of the year with deficient skin, to begin with.
But don’t lose hope just yet, I've put together a robust plan of action for your winter skin with our Earthyalchemist products which will keep your skin supple and hydrated throughout the season with minimal change or added time in your daily care routine. Because we know how important it is to keep you looking and feeling good whether you have hours to spend or just minutes a day on self-care.
The Earthyalchemist Skin Care Routine A to Z.
First best advise I can offer you is pretty basic. Do not shower with hot water. I know better than anyone how enticing that hot steam is when you slip out of your warm layers of clothing, the cold air hits you right before you step into the shower and all you want to do is let that hot water steam up the shower burning a little heat into your skin. Well, it is a good thought but a very bad idea. Hot water strips your skin of its natural oils and leaves it drier than it should be. So now you've done yourself a disservice the effects of which will last longer than the few minutes of bubbling heat gave you. So do yourself a solid and keep your water lukewarm enough not to burn you but not to freeze you either. Somewhere in the middle of Wow to Wowza is good.
After a gentle cleanse with one of my favorite bars Cleopatra I use my Cool Cool Citrus scrub on my elbows, knees, heels and the balls of my feet. Some gentle exfoliation with my sugar scrub steeped in skin loving oils helps remove dead skin cells but also gives you that added hydration in areas that you need it the most. The Earthyalchemist formula features fresh, sweet citrus scents nourishing oils organic sugars and thick exotic butters and honey in the soaps and scrubs; these super ingredients fuse with your skin to bring out its best feature forward. Now that your skin is sufficiently prepped after cleansing and hydration, water on the skin evaporates into the air, taking the skin’s natural moisturizing barrier with it! Using a good, hydrating body moisturizer helps to prevent this from happening, keeping skin soft and touchable! Pristine or Coco Rose, both excellent body butter options. Emollient, super absorbent, intensely hydrating and aromatic.
My personal preference is Pristine Body Butter, and Maya Rose our luxurious body oil alternating these two every other day. This keeps my skin on its toes.
There are many times you will need targeted moisture solutions, and for this, I recommend a salve of your choice. I have a few options for you. I use all of them at different times depending on my mood or my need. Right now my shelf is sporting 6 of them, but the one I reach for is the Lavender infused Calming Salve. Rushing around this holiday season, we can all use some calm in our lives, right? I also have a Set of five Salves you can grab to stock up for your different moods or grab them individually from our Body Collection here.
Here are some quick Do's and Don'ts for Winter Skin.
- Carry lotion bars at all times. Dried hands and exposed parts of your arms, legs, and feet are very uncomfortable, so when you’re not wearing gloves or pants of socks, keep these parts moisturized with your favorite lotion bar. Mine is the Banana Cream Lotion Bar which comes in a compact and stylish tin. Lotion bars won't over moisturize. No glops of extra oozy lotion to worry about cleaning up. Also, lotions bars are not water-based so that they won't dry out quickly. These bars are made with oils, wax, butters, and vitamin E. This makes them extra potent in skin repair and also lays on top of skin acting as a protective layer.
- Buy a Humidifier for Indoors. Heaters are notorious for sucking the moisture out of the skin. And we spend quite a bit of time indoors being warmed by heaters whether it is at work, school or public places like malls. Use it at night in your room and keep the mister flowing overnight, so you’ll wake up with soothed and hydrated skin and unobstructed easy breathing is a significant side effect. It's not just the skin that dries out so does the inside of your nostrils and throat if you are a mouth breather. If you have small children at home, they can benefit from this addition as well.
- Boost Your Protection Unconventionally. We’ve discussed trading in a harsh detergent bar cleanser that is mass produced with a handmade soap bar for a more gentler clean. I also recommend using our Wynter Balm Pre Wash once a week to help exfoliate and hydrate your skin by polishing your skin and prepping it for a good cleaning. The pre-wash is designed to slough off dead skin but without the cleaning effect of a scrub soap, Use it in sweeping motions towards the heart. (Meaning motions upward from your lower extremities) You can take a small dime size of the balm at a time and use a towel to brush it onto the skin. This helps circulation and also stimulated the release of toxicity. ( This method is a loose version of brushing in Ayurvedic practices). This also helps prevent prevent ingrown hairs if you wax or shave. If done regularly, it promotes blood flow. It is especially helpful to those who suffer from cold hands and feet caused by symptoms of Raynaud's disease.
- Take long, hot showers. (Like I'd mentioned before) The heat from a longer than usual steamy shower causes the skin to lose its oil barrier fast, causing itchy, dry skin.
- Skip the body lotion. To remedy flaky skin, reach for a thick and creamy nonwater based cream or bar than water or alcohol-based lotion which will dry you more. Lotions add more a feeling of "wetness" to your skin than actually moisture. It’s one of those steps that are hard to switch out from, but you’ll be glad you did it once your skin gets the relief and moisture it needs. After all it's pretty enticing to grab a big squirt bottle of discounted lotion from the drugstore with all the trigger words pasted on it. But control that urge. Your skin will thank you later.
- Over-exfoliate. We’re all for a scrub down (or even a peel!) believe me I love doing it. Nothing takes you right to glow and glimmer like an excellent exfoliant. But overdoing it will irritate and chap the skin, so less is more in the brisk months. Especially those salt scrubs. Minimize the use of them till you hit hot and humid weather that promotes oil production and sweating.
There are many ways to maintain healthy glowing winter skin and transition seamlessly between seasons as long as you have the right skin care products to help you. Whether you choose Earthyalchemist as your champion or another brand, it is critical to recognize what your skin lacks and feed it appropriately and stay aware of the inner working of what your skin care routine needs. You can find high caliber products that work beautifully with your skin's composition if you focus on a few basic principles.
Look for good quality, natural ingredients and pay attention to the company and its personal stories. How authentic are they with their goals and how transparent are they with their objective for you. Just like you'd interview your primary care physician or your nanny you need to put your skin care company through a similar checklist. Not every great skin care line is great for you. Find your home and reach for your best skin. After all the longest relationship you will ever have is with your skin.
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