Chicago winter is understandably hard on human skin. Between the cold weather, sudden gusts of freezing wind, and dry air, the skin doesn’t stand much of a chance. But you don’t have to move to the tropics to get your healthy skin back. Follow these 7 tips for healthier and better looking skin this winter season:
- Drink plenty of water. Your body is always losing fluids, and replenishing them is one of the first steps toward avoiding dry skin in the wintertime. In the dry winter climate, you’ll be losing more fluids than usual, but if you stick to the commonly recommended 64 oz. of fluids a day, that should be plenty to stay well-hydrated.
- Avoid hot showers. Few things are as satisfying as taking a really hot shower when it’s freezing out. However, most people don’t know how harsh hot water is on their skin—it strips more of your skin’s essential oils, leading to dry, itchy skin. This winter, keep the water a bit cooler and spend a few more minutes in the shower instead. This change is one of the easiest things you can do to keep your skin more hydrated when the temperatures plummet.
- Invest in a great moisturizer. Your skin is as moisturized as it’s ever going to be right as you get out of the shower. Your goal is to retain as much of that moisture as possible. To do that, apply a quality moisturizer all over as soon as you get out of the shower. This will keep your skin hydrated and form a barrier between it and the elements. If you have sensitive skin on your face, you may want to invest in separate face moisturizer.
- Moisturize again at night. If you have any areas of your skin that tend to dry out (the most common tend to be hands and face), be sure to reapply moisturizer to them before you go to sleep. That will give your moisturizer at least 6 hours to do its magic, and by the morning you should be able to feel a difference.
- Invest in a humidifier. Winter air is already dry, but your home’s furnace actually makes it even drier, and we all know that when it gets truly cold our furnaces are running practically 24/7. Some newer furnaces have a humidifier built into the system to make the air more comfortable, but if you don’t have one of these, you may want to invest in a standalone unit to keep in your bedroom while you sleep.
- Cover up as much skin as possible. It’s no coincidence that the parts of the body that get the most exposure to outside air also tend to be the ones that get too dry. The solution? Embrace gloves and scarves, which not only help to protect these sensitive areas but are also fun accessories that can enhance your outfit.
- Take a vacation. Sometimes, our skin just needs a recharge. Not everyone can afford this, but you may consider getting away for a few days to a warmer climate where you can give your skin a break and also get a boost of much-needed Vitamin D by spending some time in the sun.
Following these 7 tips should put you a long way towards healthier and better looking skin this winter season.