Winter can wreck havoc on your skin, leaving it tight, dry, and flaky. Whether you’re snow boarding, skiing, or clocking the miles in a local park, cold dry air sucks the moisture right out of your pores. Even if you decide to work out indoors, overzealous heating systems may have the same dehydrating effect on your skin. Cou can combat the effects of chilly climes with protective products. A great moisturizer, sunscreen, and exfloliant are seasonal musts, but they’re only the beginning. Our arsenal of treatments—and rules—will give your skin some much-needed cold comfort.
Rule #1, Be gentle: Skip bar soaps. Sure they leave skin squeaky clean, but they often contain harsh detergents that can suck the moisture out of your skin. Suds up with something super gentle like Dove Winter Care Nourishing Body Wash, ($7) which is übersoothing and has a powdery clean smell. For the ultimate splurge invest in La Mer The Body Crème ($195), a light-as-air, algae-infused moisturizer that leaves skin feeling beyond baby soft.
Rule #2, Lay it on thick: Slathering on moisturizer post-shower is the best way to keep skin hydrated all day. For a creamy nourisher try Ahava Honeysuckle & Lavender Mineral Botanic Velvet Body Lotion ($26). This botanical-enriched lotion stars aloe vera and African shea butter and boasts anti-inflammatory benefits. For guys not into smelling like a flowery, we suggest Nivea For Men Maximum Hydration Lotion ($7.99), a non-scented skin-smoother.
Rule #3, Spend Some Face Time We’ll assume you already have an amazing moisturizer that you use daily. If you don’t, get one—fast! If you do, make sure it’s emollient enough for the winter. You may need to find something that creates more of a barrier while boosting moisture. Philosophy’s Take a Deep Breath ($34) does both thanks to a blend of antioxidants and perflurodeclain, an all-star oxygenizing ingredient that helps fight environmental stressors.
Rule #4, Scale down: Reptilian-like skin is a serious no-no. Exfoliating is the key to removing dead dermis that builds up and prevents moisture from getting to you pores. Kate Somerville Exfolikate Gentle Exfoliating Treatment ($65) is a non-irritating facial scrub leaves a smoother, more glowing complexion. For your body, try Origins Incredible Spreadable Ginger Body Scrub ($28). Its super-sloughing powers effectively remove that dry layer without much elbow grease. We also love the invigorating citrus scent that doesn’t slap you in the face and has unisex appeal.
Rule #5, Protect and prevent: Just because winter brings bleak and dreary days, it doesn’t mean you get to leave the house without sunscreen. Sun damage doesn’t take a season off—and even though the rays may not be bright, they’re still a threat. Shield your skin with Innovative Skincare Protective Moisturizer SPF 15 ($88), a high-power face product that does it all–blocks harmful UVA and UVB rays, moisturizes, and combats the tendency toward skin cancer thanks to a formulation enriched with DNA protectants. Innovative Skincare also makes a version for your body: Extreme Protect SPF 30 ($68).