When seasonal temperatures turn nasty, your skin can suffer under the attack. Here's how to boost your body's first line of defense all year long.
Harsh winter weather can wreak havoc on your skin, and it's impossible to keep all of your skin covered all winter long. So when the cold winds howl, moisturizing becomes a must.
Going from extremely cold outside to nice and toasty inside can really dry your skin. You can prevent dry, rough skin by stocking up on nutrient-rich body butters and creams, but the first step in creating soft, supple skin is to exfoliate.
Exfoliating bath gloves are a handy way to keep your skin happy. Use them with your favorite body bar or shower gel to gently wash away dead cells and revitalize the skin. Elbows, knees, and feet need a little more attention and, for this job, a natural loofah is a great choice. This fibrous plant skeleton has long been a staple of the European spas because of its ability to smooth even the roughest spots.
For an added delight, try a sugar scrub once a week. The sugar acts as an exfoliant to "polish" the skin, and the oils are great for locking in moisture. Sugar scrubs rinse off easily with water, so the perfect time to indulge in this sweet treatment is just before you shower. Sugar scrubs are usually gentle enough to soothe the most sensitive skin without causing irritation, but it is still a good idea to test a small patch of skin on the inside of your arm before coating your entire body.
Don't use a body scrub product on your face. Instead, pick a scrub designed specifically for that job. Facial scrubs generally use finer particles, such as apricot, oatmeal, sea kelp, or small synthetic crystals, to exfoliate, and are gentler than body scrubs. But even when using a facial scrub, you still need to be careful not to apply too much pressure. Exfoliating too long or too hard can do serious damage to your skin. Apply the facial scrub to a clean, wet face, gently massaging in a slow circular motion. Splash off the scrub instead of wiping it off to help prevent scratching the skin.
Now that your skin is thoroughly revived, dig into a body butter or soufflé. Body butters are thicker than regular moisturizers and are great for keeping knees and elbows soft. Apply just after a bath and before bed to maximize the benefits of these lotions.
Hemp is causing quite a buzz in the beauty industry. Cannabis sativa hemp seed extract is a rich source of essential fatty acids, amino acids, and other vital nutrients that do wonders for extremely dry skin. There are formulas designed specifically for the body, hands, and face. Don't worry; this hemp is legal and completely drug-free.
Select a light and easily absorbed daily moisturizer for your face. You want to keep that sensitive skin hydrated, but you don't want to clog your pores or prevent your skin from getting necessary oxygen. Look for a gentle oil-free formula with SPF protection. Apply a daily moisturizer product in the morning before your makeup and in the evening after you have removed all of your makeup.
There are countless vitamin-packed facial creams available as well. Creams that contain alpha beta hydroxy acid can help reduce fine lines and wrinkles and create youthful, fresh-looking skin. Formulated for delicate skin, these treatments are an ideal way to rejuvenate the areas around your eyes while you sleep.
The onset of winter doesn't mean you have to surrender radiant skin to seasonal conditions. By sticking with a healthy diet, drinking plenty of water, and following a regular moisturizing routine, you can have supple, healthy-looking skin year-round.
is director of beauty education for Sally Beauty Company, the world's
largest distributor of professional beauty products. A licensed cosmetologist
for more than 30 years, he is a frequent contributor of beauty advice
to newspapers and national fashion and beauty magazines.
Ernie McCraw is director of beauty education for Sally Beauty Company, the world's largest distributor of professional beauty products. A licensed cosmetologist for more than 30 years, he is a frequent contributor of beauty advice to newspapers and national fashion and beauty magazines.
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