It’s Time For A Change: How Cold Weather Can Impact Your Skin and What You Can Do About It
Photo by Jessica Felicio
Regardless of where you live in the northern hemisphere, I know you’ve noticed the weather change. Whether you’ve gone from 100 degree to 90 degree weather (like me) or from 90 degrees to 50/60 degrees, you know winter is just around the corner. Just like we swap out summer shorts for jeans and t-shirts for cozy sweaters, our skin requires an updated regimen to stay luminous, happy, healthy and moisturized through the season change.
Some Cooler Weather Changes That Can Impact Your Skin
Colder weather can be tough on our skin. Reduced humidity, biting winds, and indoor heating systems can strip the skin of its natural moisture. This reduction in moisture in the air can manifest itself on your skin in the form of dryness, flakiness, and sometimes even redness. You may notice increased sensitivity in certain areas, or your face may feel strained and tight.
Cooler weather not only means increased heat, it also ushers in significant diet changes. Holiday season means swapping out the light, energizing foods of summer for heavy, coma-inducing foods that are high in carbs, fat, salt, sugar, and love. While I don’t expect you to avoid these foods, just keep in mind that they can dry your skin and cause other skin conditions like acne and irritation. The weather change also means a change to the types of produce you have access to. Holiday season introduces a variety of seasonally appropriate fruits and vegetables with skin supporting nutrients you should take advantage of.
How to Manage Your Skin When Temperatures Drop
- Adjust your home environment: Before cranking up the heat, consider the effects of hot, dry air on your skin. Instead, try setting your thermostat at a comfortable but cooler temperature. I personally like to sleep with the heat completely off during winter months- crazy, I know. It not only helps me sleep better, but it does wonders for helping to maintain my skin’s moisture. Pair this with a humidifier to add moisture into the air, and help your skin maintain its natural hydration.
- Incorporate occlusive ingredients: As you shop for skincare products, keep an eye out for occlusive ingredients like jojoba, avocado, beeswax, lanolin, hemp, glycerin and shea on product labels. These ingredients create a protective barrier on the skin, sealing in moisture. Some noteworthy products from my collection that contain natural occlusives include:
Hydra Face Creme- A creamy formula featuring jojoba, avocado, and hemp seed oils that quenches dry skin with lightweight hydration to revive even the most fragile, crackly face skin in seconds.
Brightening-C Serum- Antioxidant serum featuring glycerin, jojoba, and sunflower oil that amp up your skin’s natural defenses with pure vitamin power.
Not Your Ordinary Cleansing Balm- A shea butter based cleansing balm that removes makeup, dirt, and grime from the day without stripping your skin.
- Maintain a balanced diet: We know that your diet can impact the health of your skin, but it’s probably not fair to expect you to give up your holiday favorites for the sake of your skin. Just be sure to balance that out with a good mix of winter delights. Cooler weather brings us squash, pumpkins, apples, and root vegetables, leafy greens and citrus fruits. Incorporating foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, like salmon or walnuts, will help your skin barrier. For a guide to cool weather skincare diet shopping, subscribe to my YouTube to be alerted when my healthy skin diet shopping: fall/winter edition video is live later this month.
- Gentle exfoliation: As dead skin cells build up, your skin might appear more dull. Use a mild exfoliant once or twice a week to reveal brighter, fresher skin. Here are some gentle exfoliants that are perfect for any skin type from my collection I highly recommend:
Papaya Bright Superfood Face Mask: Nutrient-dense and packed with Vitamin C, this powder-to-gel formula smells like a tropical vacation and gently exfoliates for an even glow.
Rice Milk Micro-Exfoliant: If you like to manually exfoliate, this is the exfoliant for you! This powder-to-paste exfoliant made with finely ground brown rice gently buffs away dead skin cells to reveal glowing skin.
Brightening Enzyme Gel: Made with fruit AHAs, this fragrance-free gel exfoliates your skin without the extra work. Simply apply, let it work its magic, and rinse!
- Layer wisely: Think of skincare like dressing in layers for cold weather. Start with a hydrating serum, follow with a moisturizer, and seal with an occlusive (like a facial oil or petroleum jelly), especially at night, to lock in moisture.
Holiday season is a beloved time of year that requires changes in several areas of our lives. Observe your skin and make changes where necessary. Indulge in those wintry foods (in moderation, of course), and don't forget to show your skin some love with those goodies I've mentioned. 🍂🧡🧣