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Take a moment to think about how your skin feels right now. Perhaps you’re reading this mid-afternoon and your makeup has started flaking off when normally it stays put. Or you’ve just stepped into your air-conditioned office after battling the bitterly cold winds on the way to work and your cheeks are flushed and stinging. Your skin could feel tight and uncomfortable, there could be unwanted dry patches appearing, or overall your complexion might just feel a bit ‘bleugh’. Well, that’s winter for you. While the cold weather brings cosy nights by the fire, a new season coat purchase and weekend trips to the slopes, it also brings with it weather that wreaks havoc on our skin; resulting in things like dryness, dullness, dehydration and redness that we don’t experience at other times during the year. We’ve created this winter skin survival guide so you can spend less time worrying about the effects the cold weather has your on your complexion, and more time drinking hot chocolates by the fire.
Probably the most prevalent skin concern during winter, dry skin is a result of less humidity in the air, cold temperatures, hot air-conditioned offices and icy winds. You may notice flaky areas and skin might appear more matte and feel textured or rough. Areas of flaking compromise barrier function meaning the skin can be more prone to sensitivity, too.
Start with a balm cleanser. Eve Lom’s original balm cleanser has a coco butter base that breaks down makeup and cleanses the skin without stripping skin’s precious oils. Plus, it comes with a muslin cloth that gently buffs away any areas of flakiness.
Up next, drench skin with Lancôme’s Advanced Genifique Youth Activator Serum. Its innovative formula contains probiotics that help to maintain a healthy microbiome which strengthens and protects the skin barrier. It absorbs deeply and instantly into the skin leaving it feel nourished and protected.
Layer Perricone MD’s Hypoallergenic Nourishing Moisturiser over the top next. The texture is nice and rich and it contains olive squalene as the main ingredient which mimics ceramides in the skin and strengthens the skin barrier, so if you are out in the elements you’ve got added protection. Designed for those with sensitive skin in mind, it also contains anti-inflammatory, vitamin E to minimise discolouration and reducing water loss.
Adding an oil into your winter skin care regime is a no brainer. Drunk Elephant’s Virgin Marula Luxury Face Oil is rich in essential fatty acids and helps to replace a lack of oil in dry skin—it also has a very similar molecular size to skin’s sebum so is easily absorbed and accepted by the skin. It works to reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, redness and blotchiness, leaving a juicy glow in its wake.
This is the ‘bleugh’ we referred to earlier. You know the feeling; you catch a glimpse in the mirror and notice your skin looks lacklustre, sullen and if skin had an emotion, sad. Your circulation is more sluggish because your capillaries constrict when it’s cold, resulting in less bloody flow and a lack of radiance or glow.
Now is the time to incorporate an essence into your routine. AmorePacific’s Vintage Single Extract Essence contains a powerful green tea extract, a superior antioxidant that helps to even out skin tone and brighten. As with any essence this one will help skin to absorb serums and moisturisers more effectively, and you need all the help you can get in winter.
You’ll probably think about incorporating vitamin C into your diet to ward off a cold, but don’t forget the role vitamin C can play in your skin care routine, too. Korres Wild Rose Vitamin C Brightening Face Oil contains a super high vitamin C content from wild roses to give the skin a dewy glow. It’s also rich in omegas 3, 6 and 9 which play a role in encouraging collagen synthesis, brightening and antioxidant protection.
Pop on the electric blanket and take a moment to massage Clarke’s Botanicals Retinol Rescue Overnight Cream into your skin before bed. The retinol in this one will help to even out skin tone while renewing skin cells, revealing brighter skin when you wake up in the morning.
Make the most of your time stuck inside under a blanket by applying a skin-loving mask. 111 Skin Rose Gold Mask is a Victoria’s Secret backstage favourite, it’s infused with 24K gold (fancy!) and damask rose extract to brighten, soothe and replenish that moisture the wind took from your skin.
You might spot some redness and visible broken capillaries around cheeks and nose predominantly. Skin can look angry, irritated and blotchy. When it’s cold we have hotter showers and put our face directly under the water, this is a big no-no as the temperature is too hot causing the face to get flushed. Sudden temperature fluctuation in the skin can cause broken capillaries, too.
Try the Elemis Pro Collagen Cleansing Balm, it’s soft texture melts makeup and pollution, and the rose and mimosa waxes in it are very soothing and replenishing.
Chantecaille’s Jasmine and Lily Healing Mask can be worn to bed as night cream. It’s suitable for even the most delicate, angry or irritated skin. It’s also got a cooling effect that calms inflamed capillaries and protects and heals skin while you sleep. If rosacea is an issue this is definitely one to try.
Apply Cosmtetics 27 Huile 27 Bio-Nourishing Cell Regenerating Oil on top of your chosen overnight mask to create a protective layer. Rich in vitamins A and E, this facial oil also reinforces the skin's natural lipid barrier and helps to impart a radiant glow. Added macadamia oil nourishes and strengthens.
It’s that uncomfortable, tight feeling when you’re outside. Fine lines appear as the day goes on, and creases around the eyes and the mouth become more prominent.
The La Mer Treatment Lotion absorbs deeply into skin and prepares it for products to follow. It’s lightweight but hydrating formula is rich in minerals to feed skin, and hyaluronic acid fragments and polysaccharides plump and bind water.
Given the eyes are one of the first places to show dehydration, consider Perricone MD’s Essential FX Smoothing and Brightening Acyl Glutathione Under-Eye Cream. It regenerates the delicate tissue around the eye area helping to densify and plump from the inside out, minimising the appearance of deep lines and dark circles.
A must-try treatment when you skin is feeling depleted is the Tatcha Luminous Dewy Skin Mask. Each ultra-fine microfibre sheet mask is drenched in 20 ml of serum for maximum absorption—10 minutes is all you need. Rice germ oil and squalene help the skin to retain water better by creating a seal and reinforcing skin cell walls. Use this one with Tatcha’s Luminous Dewy Skin Mist for an added hit of hydration.
June 2019Words by Emily Deacon
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