5 Summer Skin Care Habits You Need to Continue Through Winter
Ah, autumn. The weird season between summer and winter that can't seem to make up its mind weather-wise. The time of year when you put on a sweater in the morning just to sweat through it by the afternoon. As the weather is changing, so is your skin!
While it may be tempting to cozy up under three blankets, start a Netflix binge, and ditch your skincare routine, don't forget your body still needs as much TLC and attention as it did in the summer - perhaps even more so.
Here are 5 skin care tips you shouldn't forget about just because winter is coming.
1. Make SPF Your BFF
It may seem like SPF is the signature summer staple for soccer moms and beachgoers but just because it's starting to get chilly, doesn't mean you should stash your Banana Boat under the sink. The sun's rays are just as harsh in the winter - if not more. Clouds and snow reflect UV rays making your exposed face the perfect target for UV radiation. UV radiation can lead to skin damage and in some cases can also lead to skin conditions like cancer.
Opt for a lightweight moisturizer with SPF to ensure your skin stays protected and moisturized in the colder months. Don't forget to reapply throughout the day, especially if you're sweating it off from doing physical activity or staying outdoors for extended periods of time.
2. Exfoliation Station
Exfoliating in the summer seems like a no-brainer when it comes to attaining the perfect shave and keeping your skin super soft. But did you know you should exfoliate in the winter too? It's not exactly groundbreaking to say that skin becomes dry and rough during the winter months. Dry indoor heating and cold outside temperatures can dangerously dry out skin. Dead skin cells can prevent any type of moisturizer you use from working correctly, making it more difficult to fully penetrate the skin. You'll want to exfoliate once or twice a week to make sure the new skin cells can grow healthily without obstruction.
Try our favorite fall DIY pumpkin poppy seed sugar scrub (try saying that five times fast)! Don't forget to moisturize afterward for optimal skin softness.
3. Dedication to Hydration
Hydration starts from the inside out. Summer diets consisting of fruits like melon and oranges allow us to get away with missing a cup or two of water here and there. In the winter, as seasonal fruits and vegetables go in and out of stock, it can get a little tricky. It may be cozier to curl up with coffee or a hot chocolate on a brisk day, but make sure you're also taking extra care to keep your water intake up. It's been said that the "8 cups of water a day" rule is overkill, so instead just make sure you drink enough for your needs.
Turn to vegetables with high water content like tomatoes, zucchinis, and celery. As great additions to your diet, try throwing them into your next stew or soup and your skin will thank you.
A water-loaded diet paired with a regular moisturizing routine will ensure your skin stays healthy through the cold and flu season.
4. Lock Up Your Lips
Who doesn't want a perfect pout? In the summer, it was easy to remember to put on lip balm since our delicate lip tissue can crack and dry easily in the sun and heat. But as it gets colder don't throw your trusty Chapstick into your glove compartment. Dry indoor heating and frigid outside air can wreak havoc on delicate lip tissue.
Opt for a lip balm with SPF for extra protection against the sun's harmful UV rays. Don't forget to gently exfoliate once a week with a sugar lip scrub (nothing too harsh or abrasive since lip tissue is super delicate). Our lips are one of the most sensitive parts of our body, why not give them a little TLC?
5. Don't Overheat
I know. If you're anything like me, you probably read that while swaddled in two sweatshirts and a heated blanket and thought I was crazy. It's already snowed in some parts of the country and it's only going to get colder. In the summer, no one has to think twice about not staying in the heat for too long - in fact, it's almost a competition to get as far away from the heat as possible and find the nearest AC! Despite the dropping temperatures, try to avoid overdoing it with harsh levels of dry heat in the colder seasons (like that space heater at your office desk you always turn on blast, or those moments when you turn up your thermostat when your significant other isn't looking). Showers are also a culprit for moisture theft. As someone who likes their shower temperature set to 'lava,' I would never tell anyone to take cold showers, but just consider easing up on the temperature a bit for the sake of moisture retention!
Artificial heating can suck up moisture like nobody's business so consider lowering the heat, just a few notches. Taking the edge off of the indoor temperature combined with an active moisturizing routine will help keep your skin healthy and hydrated.
There is no one clear path to a healthy complexion, these tips are to help get you started thinking about your own skincare routine and where it may be lacking this fall and winter. It's easy for skin care to get lost in the shuffle during the holiday season. The important thing is to be proactive and to apply practices that might have been left behind for summer.
Find what works for your unique skin and make it your own!
Megan is an English student with a love for bad jokes, watching the same three television shows over and over, and all things beauty. She considers her life to be an extended tribute to carbohydrates and Diet Coke, and genuinely hopes her dog is proud of her. Follow her on instagram & twitter @sweganrussell and check out her blog sweganrussell.wordpress.com