Our bodies have a natural layer of oil that helps protect the skin, but the dry air of winter can sucks the water right out of our skin. And when the moisture gets sucked out of skin, the dry skin of winter is more likely to become inflamed and itchy.
In the colder months, skin moisturizing can make the difference between comfortable smooth skin and dry itchy skin.
Here are Dr. Werschler’s 7 Essential Winter Skin Care tips:
- Use superfatted cleansers and soaps, but not heavily perfumed ones. Superfatted cleansers and soaps add moisture to the skin; cleansers and soaps with perfumes wash oils away and make skin drier. Also, liquid cleansers are generally more moisturizing than bar soaps. Some of our favorites at our medical spa, Werschler Aesthetics, include Apricot Creamy Cleanser and Herbal Cleanser for the face and Tropical Lave for the body from Epicuren. Also, iS Clinical makes a great creamy cleanser for the face that is perfect for dry winter skin as well. Skin Medica has also just launched a new line of creamy cleansers. Stop by Werschler Aesthetics and have the staff assist you in picking out the perfect product for your specific needs.
- Warm, short showers are better than long, hot baths. The heat of a hot bath melts away the skin’s protective oils and may dry out the skin.
- Pat dry after a shower or bath; vigorous rubbing leaves protective oil on the towel, not on the skin.
- Moisturize. A lot. Immediately after a bath or shower is a good time to moisturize, because it can seal the moisture in your skin. Unscented moisturizers or moisturizers with natural fragrances are better because the artificial fragrances are added to products along with alcohol, which can dry the skin. Epicuren makes a great line of unscented and naturally scented lotions that are available at Werschler Aesthetics (the staff favorite is the Kukui Coconut Lotion). If you are really dry, try moisturizing your body with one of the incredible oils from Epicuren right out of the bath or shower on damp skin and use a lotion over the top of it to seal it in. Oils are more moisturizing than lotions or creams.
- Fragrance-free laundry detergents can be better for your skin, and fabric softener dryer sheets can also because of the fragrances embedded in them. Try an unscented product in both your detergent and dryer sheets that say “Dermatologist recommended.”
- Keep your home humidity elevated with room or heating unit humidifiers.
- For dry, cracked hands, try applying a thick layer of petroleum jelly or coconut oil to your hands at bedtime, cover with cotton gloves (you can get these at pharmacies), and wash off in the morning. For deep cracks in the skin, it may be time to make an appointment with one of our providers at Spokane Dermatology Clinic as you can develop an infection in the deep fissures.