If you notice a change in your skin as winter approaches, making a few changes to your routine can make the world of difference.
1. If normally oily or combination skin is getting a little dry, don't use products designed for dry skin as this will only cause breakouts. Instead, try using a more nourishing moisturiser or facial oil that is suitable for your skin type and try changing from a cleansing wash to a cream cleanser.
2. Central heating takes moisture out from the air; try leaving a dish of water near your radiators which will act as a humidifier to help replace the moisture that's lost - you can also add a few drops of aromatherapy oil to fragrance your room.
3. Don't forget your lips, they can really suffer in the winter. Don't scrub them, this will make them worse (for more info I have written another blog on this), instead ensure they are nourished and hydrated by using a lip balm regularly throughout the day and before you go to bed at night, look for natural based lip balms and avoid petrolium jelly.
4. Use AHAs such as glycolic acid or lactic acid to exfoliate your skin rather than a scrub. Using a scrub on the face can dry out the skin. AHAs help to exfoliate by dissolving the glue that holds on the dead skin cells, leaving the skin instantly fresher and healthier, without having to scrub at your skin.
5. Don't forget the children; their skin can also become dry this time of year, especially if they suffer with eczema, so use an appropriate (gentle) moisturiser, or a non-comedogenic oil such as jojoba or avocado oil. I use Oilatum on my girls.
6. Humectants bind moisture to the skin; look out for ingredients such as Hyaluronic Acid, Glycerine, Lactic Acid, Aloe Vera and Urea in your moisturiser.
7. In the cold weather, our bodies crave hot baths and showers. Unfortunately, the hot water can dry out your skin leaving it itchy. Opt for a warm shower or bath that's not too hot, then wrap up in a nice, fluffy bathrobe.
8. If your skin is dry, try adding a cupful of oats to your bath to soothe the skin. For less mess, put the oats into the foot of an old pair of clean tights, tie and cut the rest of the tights to make more oatmeal bags for the bath.
9. Omega oils containing EPA are wonderful for helping to keep the skin and hair in peak condition. DHA keeps the brain functioning properly while the EPA in the oil helps by regulating oil production and acting as an anti-inflammatory. However, there are concerns that Omega 6 can actually make conditions such as acne worse, so if you do notice a flare up when taking your omegas, it's best to buy a product that contains only Omega 3.
10. Don't forget the skin on your body and feet. Because we're covered up we tend to stop looking after the bits that aren't shown, and then panic when the sun comes out, scrubbing and moisturising to make our legs and feet look healthy enough to show off. Treat yourself to some gorgeous smelling products, then choose a day to exfoliate and moisturise from head-to-toe, snuggle up in your bathrobe and go to bed early with a good book (ahhh bliss).