Winter may bring hot cocoa, holiday cheer, and festive coffee cups. But it also heralds in a few less-pleasant seasonal standbys: dry skin, chapped lips, and head-to-toe flakes. The culprit is clear: Freezing temperatures, dry air, and whipping gusts of wind can wreak havoc on our complexions. But since moving to a Caribbean island isn’t exactly an option for most of us, we’ve found a few easy routine changes that will ensure your skin is soft, plump, and ready to take on the season.
Summer’s humidity may cause our hair to turn into a frizzy mess, but it’s much nicer to our skin, keeping it plump and dewy throughout the warmer months. But when humidity levels plummet in the winter, so do the moisture levels in our skin. “Summer moisture is not the same as winter moisture, so you need to change the way you moisturize,” says Dr. Kim Nichols, Avon’s Consulting Dermatologist. “You want to move to a heavier moisturizer to keep your skin hydrated.” That means, if you’re using a light lotion, now’s the time to change it up to a richer cream like Avon ANEW Ultimate Supreme Performance Crème, make sure to use it in conjunction with an SPF based cream. Also, consider products that contain hyaluronic acid, a powerhouse ingredient that absorbs moisture from the atmosphere and can hold 1,000 times its weight in water. “Hyaluronic acid is found naturally in our skin cells, but we have to supplement it in the winter,” says Dr. Nichols. “It’s one of the best things you can use this time of year, so pile it on!” Try Avon ANEW Clinical Overnight Hydration Mask, which is packed with the superstar ingredient to keep skin plump.
Cold air plus sniffly noses equals many of us walking around with flaky, rough patches on our cheeks and around our noses. Not exactly cute! To get rid of them, Dr. Nichols recommends exfoliation. But go easy! “Choose a gentle product like Avon ANEW Clinical Extra Strength Retexturizing Peel and don’t overdo it,” she says. “And always follow up with a good moisturizer on top.”
Stock up on sunscreen
Just because the skies are gray and dreary doesn’t mean your skin can’t experience damage. “Eighty percent of UVB rays came through the cloudiest days,” says Dr. Nichols. “And it’s even worse if you’re skiing. I’ve seen people get horrible sunburns from skiing in 20 degree weather.” To stay safe whether or not you’re hitting the slopes, always wear a broad-spectrum, SPF every day, regardless of the forecast. Try Avon ANEW Skinvincible Day Lotion Broad Spectrum SPF 50.
Love your lips
Your mouth is one of winter’s biggest victims. And not only do chapped, flaky lips look unsightly, but they also make it nearly impossible to achieve a smooth lipstick application. So, keep them soft, kissable, and lipstick-ready by slathering on a good lip balm throughout the day. Avon Moisture Therapy Intensive Healing & Repair Moisturizing Lip Treatment Balm has a patented Hydraboost technology that mimics the skin’s natural defense barrier to help absorb—and lock in—extra moisture.
Smooth your body skin
Legs and arms aren’t spared from seasonal dryness—and most of us have the rough knees and scaly elbows to prove this. To soften up, Dr. Nichols recommends hydrating with a more intensive product. We like Avon Moisture Therapy Intensive Healing & Repair Body Lotion.
Upgrade your shower game
You’re going to want to step it up similarly in the shower, too. Shower gels are amazing for getting us clean, but they don’t provide maximum hydration. Instead, Dr. Nichols recommends switching to a formula that’s cream- or oil-based to help keep skin properly moisturized. Try Avon Skin So Soft Creamy Body Wash. Then, when you exit the shower afterwards, be sure to apply a nice, thick moisturizer ASAP when skin is still damp. This helps seal in moisture to keep skin extra hydrated.
Baby your hands and feet
Gloves and snow boots can only offer so much protection; our poor hands and feet are particularly vulnerable this time of year, growing drier and rougher the further we get into the season. To keep palms silky, stash tubes of hand cream in your purse and desk drawer, then slather it on throughout the day. (Taking extra care to always lotion-up right after washing your hands.) Then, to keep feet supersoft, Dr. Nichols suggests this intensive treat: Slather them with an ointment-based moisturizer at night, then slip on socks. “The socks help the moisturizer penetrate,” she says. “You’ll wake up with noticeably softer hands and feet.”