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Protect Your Skin from Cold Weather

 

by Sárka-Jonae Miller
See more articles by Sarka_Jonae Miller

(The Best Years in Life) Although summer may be approaching, late winter to early spring still brings harsh weather that threatens the health of your skin. Dry, cold air steals the protective layer of oil that keeps your skin moist. The lack of oil causes dry, itchy skin that is prone to cracking. Any trauma to the skin could cause flare ups of conditions such as psoriasis and eczema. Even being indoors does not help because heaters dry out the air too, robbing your skin of moisture. Although you cannot completely prevent dry skin, you can minimize the potential trauma and reduce the likelihood of flare ups and cracking.

Bathing Tips to Protect Your Skin

Few things feel as wonderful as a long hot shower or bath on a cold day. Unfortunately, this is exactly what you should not do if you want to keep your skin healthy and moist. Bathing time should be kept to a minimum. Using lukewarm water instead of hot water is also preferable.

Avoid using soap to wash your face. Soap lather is harsh and drying. A face cleanser specific to your skin type gets the best results. You do want to wash off any dirt or make up to keep your skin clean.

When you get out of the shower, be sure not to hurt your skin by harshly drying yourself off with a towel. A better way to get dry is to gently pat yourself with a towel. This prevents damage to your skin and helps to maintain moisture. Only pat dry your skin until it is slightly damp, not completely dry, and then apply moisturizer.

Natural ways to moisturize your skin

Putting on moisturizer helps give your skin back what it loses from wind and cold weather. Some people with conditions like psoriasis and eczema find that wrapping their skin with a plastic wrap after applying moisturizer makes their skin extra soft. Try leaving plastic wrap on for 30 to 60 minutes.

When shopping for a moisturizer, look for the most natural moisturizing ingredients. Almond oil and cocoa butter are two excellent skincare ingredients perfect for extra dry skin. They both smell delicious and are available at natural food stores. Aloe vera is another cold weather-friendly natural ingredient. It moisturizes, tones and soothes irritated skin. Aloe vera plants are easy to care for and give you access to fresh aloe any time. You can also buy aloe vera gel or juice.

 

What to wear for healthy skin

Tight clothing rubs against your skin and could cause the trauma that leads to flare ups. It can also irritate otherwise healthy skin. Certain fabrics, including polyester and wool, increase itchiness.

Do your skin a favor and wear clothes made out of breathable fabrics that are soft to the touch. Looser clothing causes less irritation even if you sweat.

Use a humidifier

A humidifier is an easy way to keep your home or office skin-friendly. A moisture level of between 30 and 50 percent is ideal. You can measure the humidity in your home or office with a hygrometer.

Care for your lips

Dry lips are almost begging to be licked, but if you want to protect your skin apply lip balm instead. Licking your lips can make them more dehydrated because saliva is alkaline. If a lip balm doesn't do the trick, try taking an extra soft toothbrush and gently brushing away flakes. To prevent dry lips, use lip balm every time you eat, drink or go outside.

Following these tips leads to healthier skin with fewer cold weather flare ups. You should also remember to apply sunscreen even when sunlight is weaker during overcast days. Snow reflects up to 80 percent of sunlight so even if the sun is barely shining, pack on the sunscreen.

See also:

Natural Fruits, Foods and Remedies Give Smoother, Younger Skin

Bring Out That Inner Glow in Your Skin

Sources for this article include:

http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20307071,00.html
http://www.todaysparent.com
http://www.motherearthnews.com
http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com

 

About the Author

Sárka-Jonae Miller is a health and fitness expert. She began working in the fitness industry in 2000 while pursuing a BS in journalism at Syracuse University. She became certified as a personal fitness trainer and group exercise instructor in 2003. She has also received training in massage therapy. Sárka also writes fiction. She is the author of the chick lit novel, Between Boyfriends. Get more health and wellness tips on Sárka's Natural Healing Tips blog or join her on Facebook and Twitter.

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