We’ll take the pragmatic route on this topic, of course!
Anyone that has ever cared or paid close attention to their skin will know that a change in environment, a trip, a change in seasons, eating something weird that you’re allergic to, or even pregnancy (damn hormones), can throw a wrench in the gears of your skincare.
Right now, I’m dealing with the pregnancy factor and this weird dry/splotchy patch that won’t go away. I’m getting a facial today, so I’m hoping that’ll settle it down and that I’ll get more advice on some natural products I can use (I will definitely post about those later).
Here are some tips on how to adjust your skincare routine (without freaking out that you have to adjust your skincare routine). How much you spend is up to you, but know that good products can often cost more. Hey, it’s an investment in YOU, which I’m always a fan of.
THE DISCLAIMER: No two skincare routines are meant to be the same (your friends’ won’t be like yours because, by nature of being human, you’ll have different skin problems and situations). Please bear in mind that I’m not a medical esthetician, so any advice that I dole out is what I’ve suggested to my own customers through my natural personal care business and from a hell of a lot of research. It won’t work for everyone, so please consult your dermatologist or doctor if you have severe acne or other comparable skincare problems. If you’re generally happy with your current skincare situation and don’t feel like you’re going to have any problems, I really love Soko Glam’s skin quiz for figuring out what products to use.
Start by assessing your skin. Sounds difficult, but it’s quite easy. Check for any abnormalities (weird dry patches that weren’t there before, unevenness, extra oil, etc.). Simply wash your hands, run your fingers over patches, give your face a good feel and a long glance in the mirror!
Typically in the winter months, many people experience dry skin. However, overly dry skin can sometimes (depending on your skin type) behave in the opposite way and try to produce extra oil to compensate for the dry conditions, making your skin break out. Yikes.
Go easy on the oil-free cleanser. North American skincare is all about the oil-free everything: I’m here to tell you, oil-free isn’t great for your skin long term for a few reasons. 1. Your skin produces oil naturally, and stripping the oils makes your skin work harder to balance out again, which = ageing. 2. It can make the pH of your skin more alkaline, and skin is not naturally alkaline (it’s a pH of 5.5, so slightly acidic), which also = premature ageing.
I’m not one to say no to the occasional cleanser with salicylic acid when the skin is being weird. Salicylic acid sloughs off skin really nicely (so it’s a chemical exfoliator, in a nutshell), but overuse can push skin in the other direction and dry it out.
I’m a huge fan of double cleansing, aka washing my face with cleansing oil, followed up with a water-based or water-activated cleanser, which keeps everything nice and balanced. The oil helps hydrate skin, while also adhering to dirt, make-up, excess sebum and pollutants as well as keeping the pH of your skin nicely balanced. In my not-so-humble opinion, oil cleanser is for everyone: dry, sensitive, oily, and combination skin alike can use it.
Always tone and moisturize. Think of toner as a primer for your moisturizer. It’ll help it spread more evenly, adds a touch of external moisture to your skin. Realistically, keeping hydrated is great for your skin but it takes FOREVER for the water to get your skin, so hydrating externally is very important. Toner also allows you to use less moisturizer, making your container way more economical.
If you’re doing all of the above…toss in a serum for those spots that are extra dry, or even put a few drops in your moisturizer to give it some dry-skin beating superpowers!
Don’t skimp on your eye cream at night (yes, this is a different cream and Web MD backs me up). You can also be lazy like me and use your serum instead of eye cream; it should be fine 😉
And don’t over exfoliate. Opt for no more than twice a week, otherwise, you can thin out your skin, which can lead to more problems. Yikes.
The big takeaway: don’t be afraid to layer on extra hydrating products if you’re experiencing seasonal dryness, and adjust as necessary. Just please please please don’t rub coconut oil on your face…
What do you do to beat dry skin in the winter? Do you put a humidifier on your desk? Let us know in the comments!