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Dry skin in winter is incredibly common. The cold temperatures and dry air can easily leave us feeling dry, irritated and itchy. But there are ways to keep your skin healthy without having to resort to expensive or wasteful skincare products. In this article, we’ll look at simple steps you can take to avoid dry skin in winter, all while being planet-friendly!
The first of these don’t involve skincare products at all…
You can go a long way to help your skin without opening a jar of face cream.
The first step is to make sure you’re drinking enough water. While it may seem counterintuitive, hydrating from the inside out can help keep your skin hydrated on the outside. Aim for at least eight cups of water per day and increase your intake if you’re feeling thirsty.
The second step is to reduce the amount of time you spend in hot showers or baths. Hot water can strip away natural oils from your skin, leading to dryness and irritation. Instead, opt for lukewarm showers and baths, or try switching to showering every other day instead of daily.
Thirdly, watch out for harsh heating or dramatic temperature changes, as this will confuse your skin and cause dryness. Keep your home thermostat down, don’t sit too close to a roaring fire, and when you go outside, wrap up warm. A woolly hat to cover your forehead and a scarf around your mouth and nose can go a long way to protecting delicate facial skin from the cold.
Turning down your heating and water temperature will of course benefit the environment, not to mention your heating bills!
Your skincare regime naturally plays an important role in defence from the cold. It’s also good for the soul and we’d never be ones to discourage self-care! Get into a good rhythm of gentle exfoliation, cleansing and moisturising to avoid dry skin in winter. Here’s how and why:
Gentle exfoliation at least weekly will remove dead skin cells making way for new ones that can hold moisture properly. This doesn’t need to be an expensive investment either – you can buy small quantities of powders for face masks and scrubs here and add natural exfoliators like ground oats or poppy seeds from your kitchen cupboard. Mix into a paste with water and apply gently in circular motions. (But don’t keep your paste for more than a day or so, as without preservatives it’ll go mouldy!)
Daily cleansing also keeps your skin fresh and healthy. Unclog your pores, wipe away pollution and makeup and let your skin breathe. Be sure to use a gentle cleanser on your skin. Harsh soaps can strip away moisture from your face, hands and body, leaving them dry and irritated. Drying ingredients like Salicylic Acid are also a no-no.
Look for a hydrating cleanser with ingredients like glycerine, which helps lock in moisture while still providing effective cleansing power.
You can also keep things really simple and just use an oil cleanser – jojoba oil on its own is perfect and will wipe away makeup.
We also love Zao’s solid makeup remover oil which soothes and moisturises while lifting daily grime and makeup.
A good moisturiser will hydrate and protect your skin. In the depths of winter, you might want to do this in 2 steps: Use a water- or juice-based cream (or indeed a rose water spray) first to hydrate, then follow it with a facial oil or balm to lock in moisture and add a layer of protection.
Ideally apply moisturiser straight after cleansing, bathing or showering. Doing this while your skin is still slightly wet helps it retain more moisture throughout the day.
A firm favourite here at Acala is Yay for Earth’s Sensitive Skin Face Lotion. Unlike the name suggests, this product is actually an all-oil blend, so it’s particularly effective at locking in moisture during the winter.
For something slightly different, particularly if you’re looking for plastic-free face cream, why not make your own with our DIY Face Cream Kit? It’s a fun activity and there are enough ingredients to make a cream or two for your friends too.
If it's hydration for hands or body that you need, try our gorgeous Luscious Lemon Whipped Body Butter. With creamy shea butter, coconut oil and jojoba, it's guaranteed to put a stop to parched fingers.
Finally, just because it's winter, don't forget your sunscreen, as this will help your skin focus on maintaining hydration, and not battling the effects of the sun.
There you have it – 3 ways to prevent dry skin in winter without products, and 3 steps to use in your skincare regime.
Winter is of course a great time to focus on self-care and if you feel like a bit more pampering check out our recommendations for creating an eco-friendly home winter spa.