beauty insider:
COMFORTING WINTER SKIN CARE TIPS

WINTER SKIN

JUST AS WE CHANGE OUT DIETS TO COMFORT FOODS IN WINTER,

we also need to change our skin care routine to one that is more comforting, nourishing & protective…
by bM ‘skincare expert’ contributor Emma Hobson


Winter products need to address the effects of the harsher environment; ingredients such as silicones are a godsend, creating invisible shields to protect our skin against dehydration and can even repair an impaired barrier. Having powerful anti-inflammatories which reduce redness and irritation such as Panthenol (B5), Oat Kernel {Avena Stavia} and nourishing, softening emollients such as Evening Primrose Oil and Shea Butter and various Peptides which repair and restore the skin are essential in winter.

Here are my comforting winter skin care tips to get you through winter:

Comfort for dehydrated, parched skin. Though drinking water is good for you it doesn’t correlate directly to having hydrated skin, it’s better to rely on products that protect your barrier function and prevent moisture loss. One of my top 5 favourite ingredients is Hyaluronic Acid, which has the ability to hold 1,000x’s its own weight in moisture, its ‘big brother’ Cross Linked Hyaluronic Acid is amazing too. An important part of caring for this condition is exfoliation, I’d recommend Hydroxy Acid and or Digestive Enzyme products, either wash off or leave on, both are good and many can be combined. Mild exfoliation can be done daily, more active, two to three times per week.

To boost the moisture and regain the ‘plumpness’ in the skin apply layers {the skin responds well to layering} of a hydrating serum, toner and moisturiser. Daily use of hydrating serums really keep the skin moist and supple. The hydrating spritz toner will boost your moisture levels and reduce the quantity of moisturiser you’ll need {added bonus}, and can be used throughout the day over makeup to give a real surge in moisture levels. Your moisturiser doesn’t need to be heavy or contain a lot of oil, your skin is lacking moisture not oil. I’d recommend a medium weight moisturiser with SPF30+, that is designed to nourish, protect and importantly hydrate. For an added boost to parched skin apply a hydrating gel mask once a week, ensure it goes close the corners of the nose, mouth and eyes to target those extra dry patches.

Comfort for dry, irritated skin: Firstly ensure your using a milky, creamy cleanser, one that has a light vegetable oil base such as safflower oil, it’s the perfect start to your skin care routine. Exfoliation will prevent the skin feeling taught, rough and flaky and it will help eradicate any dry patches. Avoid scrubs and opt for microfoliation instead, this will very gently ‘polish’ the skin surface using Rice Bran and Rice Extract. Vitamins are terrific in elevating dry, irritated skin, you can find some fantastic multi vitamin ‘power packed’ serums and masks. Choose those containing a complex of Vitamins {A, C, E, Panthenol/B5, Beta Glucan} as each Vitamin has its own unique benefit to the skin.

Using a night-time oil based serum will provide extra nourishment. I like Argan, Rosehip Seed and Rose Oil, blended with essential oils and combined with Peptides that deeply replenish lost oils and give lacklustre skin a fresh, dewy appearance. You’ll need a moisturiser that ‘works smart’ and ‘hard’ for your skin. Ideally containing Vitamins A, C, E, Panthenol (B5), Essential Fatty Acids, Peptides, Anti-Oxidants and Betaglucan. Don’t forget to add a few extra drops of oil to your bath or body moisturiser for that extra skin nourishment for your entire body.

Comfort of red, itchy eyes: All your eye care products need to be soothing and calming, it’s important to avoid those that contain Retinol, Hydroxy Acids and Artificial Fragrance. There are some amazing soothing eye serums that with the use of Red Hogweed, Ginger Extract and Oat Kernel act as a great anti inflammatories, reduce the redness and irritation. When the corners of the eye may become very dry and irritated use a Silicone {anhydrous} moisturiser which will protect and repair the impaired barrier of the skin and elevate the irritation. For the eyes themselves use eye drops periodically through the day to combat dry, itchy eyes.

Comfort for the lips: Please be extremely gentle with the lips. Avoid any harsh exfoliation or products that ‘sting’ or can possibly be drying. Keep the lips soft and smooth using a microfoliant every other day. Be cautious with lip balms and lipsticks, some can be drying due to their excessive humectant content which can ‘strip’ the moisture from your lips {sadly these are often the really cheap brands}. If you’re ‘addicted’ to applying lip balm/stick to keep the lips moist, try swapping to another brand you may be amazed at the difference. Ideal lip products are designed to protect the lips form harsh climates and are rich in Essential Fatty Acids and oils such as Avocado and Wheat Germ, Shea Butter and Cacao Seed Butter.

Extra winter-care tips for your skin:
* Try to avoid using too-hot water including showers and baths, this will prevent increased dehydration and sensitivity.
* If you have the heating on, combat the dry climate by placing a bowl of water in the room, better the water evaporates from the bowl Vs. your skin!
* Apply a sunscreen SPF30+, you still need to protect against UVA all year round.
* Watch your caffeine intake, keep those coffees to a minimum!
* Eat more good fats to keep the skin moisturised such as avocado, nuts and oily fish

CLICK HERE to find out more about Emma

{Pic: Elle}


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