How to look after your skin during Winter
Winter’s harsh conditions are often the cause of a variety of dermatological problems.
In stark contrast to glowing summer skin, many are horrified by dryness, a dull complexion, under-eye circles, and spots. The causes of such are varied, both direct and indirect. Here are some of the most common skin issues experienced in winter, their causes, and how to fix them.
Exposure to cold temperatures
Cold weather can cause a flare up in many pre-existing health conditions such as psoriasis, eczema and cold urticaria, which is why it especially important for those with clinical needs to take extra care of their skin during the winter season. For those who are fortunate enough to live without these conditions, low temperatures are still likely to cause chapped lips, itchiness, and a general sense of dryness. To avoid all the above, there are multiple things you can do.
Preserving your skin’s moisture is key to avoiding dryness and itchiness. Many of us may first turn towards hydrating skincare and regular moisturising and be disappointed when it makes little difference. Of course, using moisturiser and having an established skincare routine is important, but there are several other techniques which will make all the difference. First, make sure you invest in a quality SPF to wear daily – even in winter we are exposed to harmful UV rays which in the long-term can cause permanent damage and in current time contribute to dryness.
SPF should be used year-round, even in the winter, when your face is still exposed to sunlight and blue light rays
When temperature’s plummet outside, it’s natural to turn up the heating inside. However, this can make the heat in your house drier and have a negative effect on your skin. Instead of cranking up the numbers on the dial, put on a jumper or fill up a hot water bottle – you’ll save some money too! Additionally, experts recommend investing in a humidifier to allow your skin to absorb more moisture – a must if you’re working from home.
The role of seasonal depression
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a condition which affects up to 3 in 100 people at some point during their life. It is a type of depression which is prominent in the winter months, exacerbated by short days and grey weather. Sufferers may lack motivation, energy, and concentration which can cause individuals to abandon healthy habits and turn towards unhealthy ones including smoking, eating a poor diet, not drinking enough water, and not getting enough sleep.
Smoking can cause a dull and dry complexion, it can also damage your skin’s natural collagen and elastin which will result in sagging.
Eating too many refined carbs, which are commonly found in junk food causes a spike in your blood sugar levels, triggering insulin. Too much insulin stimulates oil-producing hormones can cause hormonal imbalances leading to clogged pores, breakouts and irritation.
Naturally, these habits will have an adverse effect on someone’s skin. They may notice a duller complexion, under eye bags, and acne. Although it is difficult to create good habits when suffering from depression, the importance of them still must be emphasised. Try to consume foods such as green leafy vegetables, protein sources such as beans and lentils, berries, and oily fish like salmon and mackerel. You will feel better for it and so will your skin. Exercise is also important and can aid sleep and relieve symptoms of depression.
If it seems as if all your at-home remedies are failing to work, consider enlisting the help of a dermatologist who can recommend suitable treatments for your skin type and set you on the right track. With Christmas coming up, perhaps ask your friends and family for skin treatments which is guaranteed to make you feel fabulous in time for the new year!