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The skin on your arms, legs and hands can quickly turn dry in the colder months, though it’s often most noticeable on the face. A combination of indoor and outdoor factors can cause flakiness and irritation on the cheeks and around the eyes – particularly on mature complexions. Fortunately, there are some easy remedies you can try to “restore” sensitive skin damaged by the winter weather, and experts have shared their best advice exclusively with Express.co.uk.
The combination of dry air, central heating, decreased sunlight exposure, and cooler temperatures are all contributing factors to the skin being drier during winter.
While this can affect all skin types, mature complexions are particularly prone to sensitivity and dryness in the cooler months. Speaking to Express.co.uk, Dr Ross Perry, medical director of Cosmedics skin clinics said: “When our skin is young and supple it’s naturally hydrated as we have more sebum and oil, as we age the oil in our skin decreases alongside cell renewal/turnover. As women age in particular, hormones can also play a part in leading to dry, scaly skin as we age.
“During winter and the colder months, we should be changing our moisturiser to one that is thicker and has more of a barrier, in summer it’s good to keep it lightweight.
“The thicker the moisturiser used will help keep the elements out from penetrating the skin such as harsh weather conditions, environmental factors, central heating and overall lack of hydration.”
When it comes to applying your moisturiser, Dr Ross noted that once or twice a day simply isn’t enough. If you often go bare-faced with no makeup on, he recommended applying it “liberally” and “frequently” throughout the day.
He added: “A home humidifier may help alleviate especially dry skin, and you should wear soft layers to avoid irritating the skin while keeping hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
“Choose soothing baths over hot showers as long showers in hot water remove moisture from your skin, better to shower in warm water just long enough to soap up and rinse off. Soaking in Epsom salts, or dead Sea salts in a warm bath for around 15 minutes to slough off dry skin scales, soothe itching, and unwind.
“Apply moisturizing cream or lotion right after to lock the water in. Try and exercise when the weather is nice to get some vitamin D.”
If, however, you like to wear makeup daily, there are a few other ways to ensure your skin gets enough vitamins and moisture to keep it looking supple and plump.
According to Dr Ross, you should be changing more than just your moisturiser if you’re looking to create a hydrated base for makeup products to sit on top of.
He said: “A good Vitamin C serum used at night will also help to add hydration and prior to make-up look to use a moisturising primer under foundation or opt for a tinted moisturiser.
“Many women find as they age, less is more when it comes to make-up, therefore a good tinted moisturiser with added benefits will make the skin look more dewy and fresh rather than cakey and dry looking.”
If you are struggling with extra dry or irritated skin, choosing specific formulas can help if you’re looking for both skincare and coverage.
For natural coverage to combat redness, Rosalique’s unique micro-encapsulated technology provides an instant concealing effect. Containing ingredients which are clinically proven to reduce redness the SPF50 formula is both dermatological tested and aesthetically graded.
The beauty and skincare expert added that La Roche Posay products are another affordable option which contain “great ingredients for the skin”, particularly for those who have specific concerns such as dry and ageing complexions.
Dr Ross said: “Epaderm cream is a super cheap moisturiser and really does what it says on the tin. Suitable for most skin types, it contains a great barrier which is affordable. Dry and ageing skin can often have lots to do with genetics so it’s also good to lead a healthy lifestyle.
“Try not to have showers or baths which are too hot as this will dry the skin out further and strip the skin of its natural oils. Pat skin dry rather than run with a towel as this can irritate the skin. Using petroleum jelly overnight is a good way of locking in moisture and is very cheap.”
If you’re trying to conceal skin concerns on dry, damaged skin, specialist Jane Scrivner explained that makeup “shouldn’t be an issue” if you use the right ingredients to prepare your complexion.
She told Express.co.uk: “You can still wear makeup in the cold weather if your skincare is properly protecting your skin. To restore dry, winter-worn skin you need a protective moisturiser to nourish and seal in moisture to protect against dehydration. Moisturisers containing ingredients like oatmeal, mango or shea butter, like my OO cream, will create a very fine protective film over the surface of your skin.
“If you don’t already have a facial oil in your regime, this is the time to incorporate one. Oils are the food we need to feed our skin and are the best way to nourish, replenish and restore the skin keeping it healthy, strong and supple. You’ll wake up to bouncy, nourished, pillow-soft skin.
“When it comes to choosing facial oils, ingredients are key! Jojoba oil is always a firm favourite of mine as it works with all skin types but rosehip and argan oil are also fantastic options.”
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