Healthy skin normally has a water content of between 10% and 20%. But heating and the harsh winter weather can suck the moisture out of your skin, leaving it dry and dull. Winter skin usually suffers from spending too much time indoors in a dry artificially heated atmosphere. Harsh winter weather can also lead to broken capillaries in your skin, those red veins that are usually visible on your cheeks. They are caused by the constant constricting and dilating of the blood vessels as you go from extreme cold outside to heating indoors.
But the good news is your skin need not look dull or flaky or feel drier during the winter months if you follow these 5 easy tips.
1) Turn down the heat setting. Not only will you help the environment and your electricity or gas bill, but also your skin will lose less moisture. Use a throw or light blanket in front of the TV instead of overheating the room. Overdressing can also make the body too warm, so dress in layers so that you can remove them as necessary when going from the outdoors to indoors and vice versa.
2) Drink more water. Room temperature water is best, but a nice warm cup of tea can also help your skin (without heaps of sugar though.) Try herbal teas or Miso soup for a satisfying and warming drink. Remember, you still need to consume at least 2 litres of water per day.
3) Humidify the air. If you don’t have a humidifier, always place a bowl of fresh water in the room near the heat source, so that the humidity can be put back into the atmosphere. Humidity in the air around you reduces excessive water loss from the skin and even helps those raspy coughs in winter.
4) To support and strengthen capillary walls, increase your intake of Vitamin C. Vitamin C is the most important vitamin your body needs, to make its own Collagen as well. Vitamin C or ascorbic acid is found in fruits. For anti aging benefits, take at least 1000mg of Vitamin C a day. If possible a slow release form of Vitamin C is even better as it gives a constant supply of Vitamin C throughout the day.
5) It is important to remember that hydrating the skin is not only about putting moisture onto the skin. The real trick is to stop the moisture that is already there from escaping. Your skin needs a moisturiser that contains natural lipids to form a protective skin barrier against the elements and give intense hydration. To protect the skin on your face and neck against the elements use a good quality moisturiser like the JK Secret Cosmeceuticals Rich Anti Aging Moisturiser which contains organic rosehip oil, evening primrose oil, avocado oil, as well as apricot kernel, jojoba and grape seed oil to form protective layers on your skin. It also contains Vitamins C & E, AHA’s – alpha hydroxy acids and Collagen, which is just what the doctor ordered!
Jeanette Kemert is a Cosmetic Scientist with over 20 years experience in the skincare industry. She is a formulation development specialist, consultant and lecturer. In 2009, Jeanette founded JK Secret Cosmeceutics due to the high demand for an anti aging skin care range containing natural and organic ingredients combined with potent cosmeceutical ingredients.
Visit her at www.jksecret.com