Ten tips to take care of your skin in winter
Winter affects our entire body, it is well known as it affects the respiratory system and bones, but we must not forget about the skin. The skin in winter, as in summer, is exposed to inclement weather, the areas being most sensitive to cold; cheeks, lips, neck, décolleté, and hands.
Therefore, it is important to take into account a series of tips:
1. Hydrate the skin daily and several times a day. This is especially important in those people who suffer from some type of dermatosis (atopic dermatitis, psoriasis …). A suitable emollient (based on lanolin, urea …) will help maintain healthy skin during winter.
2. Avoid excessive hand washing. Wear and tear dermatitis that affects the back of the hands is a frequent reason for consultation at this time of year, especially in people who wash them repeatedly for work reasons; to avoid this, the use of gloves, hydration and barrier effect creams.
3. Avoid aggressive products for washing hands, face and body. Use mild and dermatologically tested products.
4. Avoid showering with very hot or very cold water. Use warm water and avoid showering more than once a day, as this will increase dehydration of the skin.
5. Moisturize lips and protect them from ultraviolet light. The lips suffer a lot in winter, even more so if you have some basic alteration (atopic, actinic cheilitis …).
6. Do not forget sunglasses and daily sun protection also in winter, especially in areas where there is snow, since it reflects 80% of solar radiation.
7. Wear gloves and warm clothing. Especially those patients with sensitivity to cold and who usually suffer from perniosis (chilblains) or Raynaud’s phenomena (cold fingers of the hands that turn white, bluish and red).
8. Avoid, as much as possible, sudden changes in temperature (passage from the cold environment outside to the heated environment inside the premises and houses), as this increases the possibility of the appearance of dilated capillaries (telangiectasias or spider veins) on the face (especially cheeks), with the consequent aesthetic problem.
At this point, we must emphasise three aspects:
a. The most recommended active ingredients for non-sensitive skin are: vitamin C, retinoic acid, glycolic acid and hydroxy acids (with an important anti-aging function). However, there are sensitive and intolerant skins that must use other types of products, rich in soothing, vasoconstrictive and decongestant substances, such as dexpanthenol, alfabisobolol, butcher’s broom, glycyrrhetic acid … In addition, they should avoid products that contain alcohol, preservatives or perfumes . Therefore, an individual dermatological assessment of each skin type is essential.
b. The texture of the ideal cream will also depend on the type of skin and if you have any underlying condition, in general, the fluid will be better for combination or oily skin and the cream texture for mature and dry skin. There are innovative masks and consultation treatments, such as mesotherapy with hyaluronic acid, which help to hydrate in depth. In any case, we insist that the best thing is to consult a dermatologist, your doctor who specializes in skin care, both healthy and diseased.
c. Finally, point out that winter is the best time to perform intensive facial depigmenting treatments (for dark spots), both at home and in the doctor’s office (chemical peels or masks).
9. Take care of the diet. Increase the consumption of vitamin C and antioxidants. Do not forget to drink between 1.5-2 liters of water a day. 10. Avoid tobacco and alcohol, as they have a negative effect on the health of our skin, generating free radicals. In addition, alcohol worsens facial hair dilation.