Does my skin get the wintertime blues too?
If you’re anything like me, every year around this time I look at myself in the mirror and say “well, hello crypt keeper”.
Even after 20 years as a professional in the beauty industry, I somehow forget every bit of good hair and skin advice I’ve ever given my clients during this time of year. And, yes, the massive quantities of holiday sugar consumed can’t have done anything good for my glow, but it also seems like the dry days of the Denver winter have now crept into every pore on my body and sucked my skin drier than the Sahara desert.
So what to do when the winter skin blues have got you dry, itchy, and patchy all over? Even though you may not be able to get that summer glow on, get back to basics and make sure you don’t forget these 5 tips that I’m reminding myself of right now!
Here are my top tips for all-around winter skincare wellness:
Tip #1: Exfoliation is non-negotiable
I mean, obvs we are pretty biased when it comes to the importance of exfoliation, but when it comes to dry skin in the winter, exfoliation is more important than ever. A good exfoliation helps to remove all of the dry, dead skin cells that can build up even more in the cold winter air. Purging your skin of these dead skin cells can help brighten your skin and let your treatment and hydration products work even better. In fact, during the winter time, especially if you live somewhere cold and dry, you may want to increase your exfoliation frequency from 2-3 times per week to 3-4.
For my full body physical exfoliation I love a good exfoliating glove or a Luv Scrub. I’ll occasionally use a sugar scrub like Herbivore’s Coco Rose Scrub…but you know we don’t love shower products in jars around here since introducing water into a product environment can promote bacterial growth (not to mention your product gets all watery and goopy). A lot of times these kinds of scrubs can end up just sliding off the skin and down the drain before they even get a chance to do their job.
And of course, we don’t recommend a sugar scrub anywhere in the intimate area because when the
heat from your shower causes the sugar to mix with the oils, it can really occlude the skin's pores as well as causing yeast infections for people who are more prone to them. So for that area and the other areas I wax or shave, I always use our Deck Scrub Original
in the winter time, which gives a great physical exfoliation from our signature exfoliating blend, helps to prevent ingrown hairs and has essential added hydration from Vitamin E and Shea butter. The formula is thick so it really sticks to the skin and gives you amazing exfoliation for anywhere on the body.
Tip #2 Give yourself a nightly rubdown
A nightly full body hydration ritual is one of my favorite forms of self-care, but it becomes an absolute necessity during the winter.
After a good exfoliation, I start with a full body balm or a good body oil. My current fav is an organic Argan oil from a store called Apia in Morocco. Since our family is there, I’m lucky enough to spend part of the year there, so I stock up on it whenever I visit. If I don’t have that on hand I also like Shea Moisture's Daily Hydration Oil.
Then I make sure to hit all the areas I wax with my Deck Glow Brightening Oil. In the summer I’ll use just my Deck Polish but in the winter I’ll layer both. I also make sure to use Deck Glow on my hands
since I deal with a lot of hyperpigmentation and roughness on them. (It has worked magic on making my hands smoother and getting rid of a lot of the sun spots.)
For my face, my absolute favorite hydration oil is Sunday Riley’s Luna Sleeping Oil. It’s a super hydrating retinol oil that helps fight that rough texture that winter dryness can bring on. I never forget to finish with the lips! I love Jack Black's balm which isn’t too waxy but really penetrates for longer lasting moisture. And bonus, it has SPF!
Tip #3: It may be cold outside, but skip the hot as hell showers
I know that especially in the winter it feels amazing, but if your shower water could cook dinner for the night, dial it down a notch. Super hot showers can strip the skin of beneficial oils and damage your natural skin barrier. Piping hot showers can add to dryness and dehydration issues, causing itchy, red irritation. While most dermatologists and your favorite Esthi might recommend a lukewarm shower (and following their advice is always best), if you just can’t live without the heat, try to keep the hottest part of your shower down to just a few minutes and then turn the temp down to finish. No matter your shower temp, it’s best to use a gentle body cleanser that will help to retain all of your natural oils. I haven’t found one that I absolutely love just yet, so we have an ahhhhhhmazing one in the works!
Tip #4: Hydrate from the inside out and get fishy
As they say, keep calm and hydrate. All. Day. Long. The cardinal rule is to drink a half an ounce for each pound of your body weight. For the thick girls (like myself) this can end up feeling like we are drowning by the end of the day, so I usually don’t (or more accurately can’t) stick to that. I try to
fill up one 2 liter bottle and at the very least drink that. It really helps me to have the entire amount I need to drink for the day already in one container and literally sitting in front of me saying “look how dehydrated you are, you need me”. That’s some motivation right there. This is especially important for those of us living in high altitude climates!
Getting enough Omega-3s in the form of a quality fish oil supplement or from adding more fish to your diet can also play a role in keeping those winter time skin blues away. Omega-3 helps to moisturize skin from the inside out, strengthening the skin barrier, sealing moisture in and keeping the bad stuff out. It helps to reduce inflammation which can also ease redness and irritation.
Tip #5: Don’t be a salty bitch
I know this can be extra hard during winter months when cuddling on the couch with a big blanket and a bag full of Doritos sounds better than just about anything, but minimizing your salt intake can help your skin feel a whole lot better. Not only can excess salt in your diet cause some major bloat, it can also really mess with your skin’s balance. Excess sodium can deplete collagen levels and dehydrate the body, causing itchy, dry and dull skin. Some studies have even shown that excess salt can trigger existing skin conditions such as eczema.
I like to try dialing up the other spices in my foods so that I can minimize my salt intake. Adding warm, earthy spices like paprika, turmeric, ginger, cumin and cinnamon can really enhance flavor so you can add in just a touch of salt without missing it.
So there you have it! Those are some of my tips for beating the winter time skin blues. And no matter what, remember that no matter the season, it's always important to be forgiving and kind to your skin. In a world that can seem chaotic, it is LITERALLY the only thing holding us together.
Comment below and tell us some of your favorite wintertime body care tips. Bonus points if they include some of your favorite Zandi Land products! 😘