WINTER SKIN: ‘LOCKING’ IN THE MOISTURE
Winter is a tough time for South-Africans. Although short, our winter season can be brutal, particularly with our penchant for outdoor entertaining and love of short-sleeves ;-) It’s important to remember to not just temporarily adjust our lifestyle when we brace for the colder months, but re-align our health and beauty routines too.
I hold a holistic view on beauty and believe a lot of what’s reflected on your skin is lifestyle related, so see below my pointers to get through our chilly winter period, and come out just as beautiful on the other side.
DO Keep wearing sunscreen- Our winter sun is absolutely beautiful
DO Keep getting your water in- in fact, try and up that intake if you can. If the thought of 2l water per day is off-putting in the colder season, look at alternative ways you can get in liquids such as a cup of anti-oxidant rich Rooibos or a nutritious homemade veggie soup
DO Keep moisturising - despite being tempted to go from the bath to fleece pyjamas to under the covers in 5 minutes flat!
DO Keep exercising. Your blood pumps when you exercise, taking the blood all around your body (and to the much needed extremities like cold hands and feet).
DO Manage the heat in your home as effectively as possible without drying out your skin. Although wrapped in a blanket, in front of a heater sounds sublime, it's not the best thing for winter skin
..forget to apply generously despite winter. For those who feel like sunscreen blocks your pores with the uber dry conditions up in Mzanzi, try Nimue SPF 40 Sun C - it’s a lightweight and non-greasy formula that is suitable for all skin types and ages.
DON'T Always give in to the temptation of a hot, chocolaty drink. Limit your caffeine and sugar intake where you can
DON'T ...miss out on routine of moisturising your skin. As soon as you're out the bath or shower, lather in some rich moisturiser and a comforting body oil or gel. You can also add a bath milk or soluble bath oil to the bath water to help nourish and moisturise your skin.
DON'T ...forget that as painful as it sounds, summer bodies are made in winter. Choose clear soups and healthy, hot alternatives to carbo feasts and fatty comfort food
DON'T ...keep the heat on 24/7 as this can really dry out our skin and eyes and even create difficulties with our sinuses. If you need to warm your home with the use of a heater/s, try switch on a humidifier to replace some of the moisture in the air.
Here's my list of fail-safe, go-to products to keep all the parts of your beautiful body happy and healthy in winter:
Winter lips can be painful can create issues with your makeup application. I recommend Elizabeth Arden 8-hour cream as the ultimate fix. While it’s a bit of a splurge, a little goes a long way so this gem will last through winter. An added perk is that you can use it on minor cuts and other skin irritations too. If your lips are peeling, use some brown sugar mixed with olive oil and brush it onto pursed lips with your toothbrush. This should effectively exfoliate your lips prior to adding the lip salve.
Most people’s hands take a real beating in winter and the current hand sanitising protocols don't help either. I recommend SBR Repair Cream for Very Dry Skin. This cream is extremely rich so you don’t need to apply massive amounts and I find that it works for a very young to more mature skin (it my 2-year old's cheeks from getting chapped in the winter wind, and has soothed the eczema on my hands).
Cracked heels need a super-rich cream, that's high in Urea. Dis-Chem's Heel balm delivers just that. Very similar in consistency to the legendary Eulactol Heel Balm, this product comes at a fraction of the cost. Put your socks on once applied to avoid slipping and sliding around the house.
Knees and Elbows
If you're lucky enough to still have your granny, then you would've heard about Ingram’s Herbal Camphor Cream. I have to say, this 'old wives tale' is no tale at all. This cream has most certainly earned its stripes and is super easy on the wallet too!
Use an oil like Nivea Bath and Shower Pampering Body Oil during your cleansing routine, then top it off with a Urea-rich cream like Eucerin Urea Repair Plus to seal in those luscious oils. Give yourself a good rub at least twice a week with Bio Oil Gel to add some extra moisture back into the skin.
Over and above your normal routine, woman from the age of 30 upwards should add a daily serum into their routine while younger ladies can simply add in a weekly moisturising mask. I hate to tell you ladies, but start with the eye-cream addition from as young as 20. Remember that when it comes to skin, prevention is better than cure!
Lastly, please don’t despair and think that you need to have a bulging wallet in order to afford to look after your winter skin. Dischem and Clicks both stock great ranges of products which include local and international brands at really good prices so you really can afford to develop a healthy routine, without breaking the bank.
P.S. I would love to hear about your own winter 'must-haves' so please feel free to send with some pics.