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Winter Skin Survival Guide 
woman hydrating in winter

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If you feel like your skin is drier, itchier, and flakier when the weather becomes colder, it’s time to edit your skin care routine! Colder, drier weather paired with cranking up the indoor heaters leads to excessive water loss through the skin.  Read on to learn strategies to keep your skin hydrated and smooth through the coldest time of year so that the snowflakes are the only flakes in sight. 

Switch up (or skip!) your Soap:  

Soaping up the skin strips it of important oils and dries it out. Lather up the sweaty zones like underarms and groins everyday, but skip the soap on areas like your arms, legs, and torso except for once or twice weekly. Choose a fragrance-free cleanser for sensitive skin, and avoid cleansers that are anti-bacterial or contain exfoliating beads. 

Maximize your Moisturizer: 

Within 3 minutes of getting out of the shower or bath, apply a THICK moisturizer. Opt for a cream that comes in a jar rather than a thin lotion in a pump bottle as creams are more hydrating. Cerave and Cetaphil CREAMS are excellent, easy to find options. Avoid creams that contain fragrance, as fragrance can irritate dry skin and lead to an itchy rash. Feeling especially flaky? Layer a lotion that contains lactic acid (Amlactin is a great choice) under the thicker cream for an exfoliating and hydrating combo.  

Seal the Skin to Keep the Water In: 

We lose more water through our skin, a process called Transepidermal Water Loss (TEWL), while we sleep at night. That’s why we recommend applying occlusive ointments that are lanolin or petrolatum based at bedtime to prevent water from escaping through the skin barrier. Aquaphor and Vaseline are two of our faves! They can feel sticky at first, but the smooth skin will be worth it in the morning. 

Smoother Skin from Within: 

While you may not be sweating as much as during the summer, you still need to focus on healthy hydration. Drink plenty of water to replace all of the moisture you lose through your skin. 

Supplementation with Omega-3s may also help hydrate your skin. Look for a supplement with DHA-EPA and take 2,000mg daily. 

If your dry winter skin is not improving, or if you develop redness, itchiness, or other rashes, it’s time to see your Dermatologist. 

At Georgia Skin Specialists, our providers are committed to helping you achieve the Best Skin of your Life. Call or click below to schedule an appointment with one of our providers

 

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